Don’t let Anxiety Sneak up and Overstay It’s Welcome
Do you know the feeling when you slam on your brakes and aren’t sure if your car will be able to stop in time? Your heart rate increases, your mind starts racing, and even if an accident hasn’t occurred, it still takes a many minutes before the stress subsides. That’s a small sample of what anxiety can look like.
Anxiety is the mind and body’s reaction to stressful, dangerous, or unfamiliar situations. It might be more common than we realize, as anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S. with around 40 million adults being affected every year. If you feel anxious more often than you would like, you’re not alone.
In small amounts anxiety can increase our awareness or push us towards preparation. If we trace anxiety to the root cause, it can tell us more about what’s important to us and indicate areas for growth.
When the negative components of anxiety take over, it can shut us down and leave us feeling overwhelmed. Sometimes we are anxious from being behind on our responsibilities, sometimes we feel the pressure to perform, or maybe our minds have been tirelessly racing for as long as we can remember. Whatever the case may be, letting anxiety go unchecked can hold us back from being all that we want to be.
We should work towards being able to differentiate between healthy concerns and pervasive anxiety. It takes practice, and here are some things you could try to help with anxiety:
1) Identify anxiety triggers and write them down
2) Increase your awareness of things you can and cannot control
3) Give your best effort and be content with the outcome- don’t let perfection be the only option
4) Schedule time to relax away from work or other responsibilities
5) Incorporate regular physical activities into your lifestyle
6) Make sure you’re getting a well-balanced diet and moderate alcohol and caffeine consumption
7) Find a community- volunteering, friend groups, church involvement, book clubs, etc. provide a break from everyday stress
8) Compat negative thoughts and promote a positive attitude
9) Embrace humor and find opportunities to laugh
10) Talk to a family member, friend, or mental health counselor about your anxiety
I’m happy to share that there are numerous ways fight back against anxiety! If your anxiety isn’t where you want it to be or you need support in other ways, The Refuge Center is a safe place to seek help!
You can contact us at 615-591-5262.
Blog written by Master’s Level Intern, Connor Anderson