The world today has countless stressful situations. Although everybody tries to avoid stress, anxiety is inevitable. Worry affects people emotionally and physically. If left unchecked, too much anxiety can lead to medical conditions such as depression. If you notice that your state of mind is getting out of hand, you need to talk to professional medical personnel. Therapists and counselors provide the necessary treatment and solutions for handling anxiety.
Methods of Coping With Anxiety
Avoid wishful thinking
Regrets and fantasy have the power to manipulate and distort your thoughts from reality. Being in touch with reality will make you feel, act, see and hear the right things. Instead of clinging on uncertainty and hopeful thoughts, it is best that you accept and face reality. Avoid basing your thought on what should be happening and focus on what is actually taking place. Learn to experience your surrounding as it is and train your mind to expect and accept occurrences. Some situations will be pleasant while others will be unpleasant. Learn to handle both cases.
When bad things happen, do not wish for things to be different because you cannot change them. It is evident that anxious thoughts wear you out. Instead of dwelling on the problem, try to come up with solutions or a way forward. For instance, if you lose a family member, do not waste your energy wishing them back. Try to accept that they’re gone and that you need to move on with your life. While you’ll miss them, they’re in a better place now.
Avoid taking drugs and alcohol
Most people who turn to alcohol or drugs when faced with hard circumstances do not know that there are solutions for coping with anxiety. Taking alcohol in order to alter your state of mind only provides temporary consolation. It cannot take away the pain or hurt. Drugs can destroy your mind and body. These substances can cause mental disorders and panic attacks. The prolonged use of marijuana and cocaine among others leads to addiction. Once hooked on these substances, it becomes hard to let go and you might end up spending a long time in a rehab institution to clear your system.
Anxiety starts with unhelpful thoughts. These could be unrealistic, false or unreasonable thoughts. Whenever you are overwhelmed with negative thoughts, challenge them with positive ideas. Thinking about failure, embarrassing situations, or dangers is one way to get yourself to worry. Sometimes the mind deceives you into thinking of the worst when in reality there is not much to worry about. You will find yourself asking questions like “Is it really true?” or “What might happen to me if things don’t turn out well?” You need to rephrase these negative thoughts with positive ones like “So what if it doesn’t work out? At least I tried.”
Engage in fun activities
Sports and hobbies take your mind off work and stressful situations. When you do something that you enjoy doing, you set your mind free from worry. If you enjoy listening to music or reading a book, do it and give your mind time to relax. Some people find relief doing charitable work. Others prefer to travel. If you have nothing to do, try taking a walk in the neighborhood. You will feel much better. If you are a parent, spend time with your kids and play simple games like a child.
Working without taking a break leads to a burnout or fatigue. When this happens, doctors recommend bed rest because the mind is tired. Coping with anxiety involves taking breaks during the day in order to allow the mind to relax. Take this time to do something different from your work. This will help you relax and recharge. A worn out mind is often unproductive and does not have the ability to work effectively.
Change your lifestyle
Too much caffeine, sugar and starch is as harmful as alcohol abuse. Coffee tends to cause anxiety because of it contains caffeine. It is advisable to take decaffeinated tea or coffee if you want to avoid anxiety. Avoid eating too much sugary or starchy foods and snacks. Cakes, cookies, chocolates and bread tend to stimulate emotional distress. Eat more fruits and vegetables and drink more water than sodas. If you feel like taking alcohol, drink sparingly to avoid a hangover. Instead of drinking your favorite beer or wine when under stress, take it as an accompaniment after meals.
Spend time with loved ones
People who make you laugh and smile give you pleasant thoughts. Surround yourself with good people. Great company helps you forget about worry for a while. If you find it hard to solve a problem, try sharing with trusted friends and family. Remember a problem shared is half solved. If the anxiety becomes unbearable while you’re in the office, go home, take a warm bath, get a massage and listen to great music. You will feel better.
Exercise, exercise and exercise
Research indicates that regular workouts reduce anxiety and disorders. Sign up for an aerobics class or do some Yoga. It eases your mind and reduces tension. Coping with anxiety is beneficial for your body and soul. Cardiovascular exercises, outdoor activities and team sports engage your mind freeing it from worry and negative emotions. Most people prefer weight training and muscle building exercises because it allows you to have targets and motivation.
Breathe, breathe and breathe
Tension makes it hard to breathe and your muscles stiffen. It is advisable that you take deep breaths in between work. You can do this in the office to relieve tension from too much work. Some people encounter stage fright in public events. When you are tense, you find yourself breathing uncontrollably. Taking a deep breath opens up your lungs and reduces blood pressure helping you to relax. As you breathe, learn to smile and count to engage your thoughts.