When I develop anxiety (which I don’t really claim or speak into existence, but for the purpose of this post I am speaking in present tense) I had no idea what it was. I thought I had something physically wrong with me. The truth is I have been headed down the road towards anxiety all my life. I was always a worry wart that tried to control all future results and hung onto past failures and disappointments. I was asking for some type of psychological issue with this type of mindset.
There are different levels that I would go through before I reached a full blown attack. Self-awareness is critical because you need to know your triggers. This is why these concepts have been so helpful to me, they make me more aware of my thoughts, feelings and behaviors so that I can minimize the tension I feel and avoid further symptoms of anxiety. Here are the top three things that I have learned to minimize the effects of anxiety.
Stop Living In The Past
This one is huge!!! Holding on to the past is like working on making yesterday a better day, you can’t! So why do we sometimes feel like holding on to the past will serve us in any way, especially if we are not using it as a lesson for what not to do in the future? Yes, the past can be used positively, but right now I’m talking about it in a negative way. Stop wishing that things turned out differently or that you wish you did this instead of that or that you wished they never did that to you. At the end of the day, whatever happened is reality. All we can do is deal with the mess in real time and process our way through. To me, there is no easy way to getting over stuff and there is no time limit either. You must digest it and deal with it in a healthy way, that’s how you grow and come out of negative situations stronger, wiser and with your peace, joy and sanity intact. Seek the support that you need to help you move on to a healthier chapter in your life.
Take Care Of You Now
I chose to treat my anxiety with lifestyle modifications. This is not a medical opinion, this is strictly my choice of dealing with me. I got serious about my nutrition, my physical activity, my personal development and my emotional, mental and psychological health.
I started eating more fruits and vegetables and less of everything else. My eating habits were not bad, but my portion control was my downfall. I would eat sensibly, but I didn’t stop when I was full. Also, since I am an emotional eater, I oftentimes ate when I wasn’t hungry. It didn’t have to be a sad occasion, I would overeat because I was happy too. I had to make the decision to get really serious about what and how much I was consuming because I realized the mind/body connection that was happening to me. I noticed that when I over ate I felt anxious. This was helpful for keeping me on track because I didn’t want to feel like that. My point, mind what you are eating.
I also started exercising at least 3 times per week. When I first started it was difficult because I felt light-headed frequently and I didn’t work out because of it. Additionally, my heart rate was usually high and that made me even more anxious! I was in a toxic cycle. In reality, the way to get rid of that feeling was for me to work out and it would go away. Moving your body is a great way to reduce stress and focus on a specific task, which in return clears your mind and relieves tension and anxiety. Try it, I’m not saying to go at it 1000% to start, but start by go for a walk and put some relaxing tunes on. You will feel better after a while. The more exercise you get daily, the better.
My success was a big result of the work that I put into myself, my personal development. I developed a deeper spiritual relationship with God. I worked on strengthening my faith and trust in the process that is life. I read books that developed and expanded my mindset, I journaled with purpose and I spend time quieting my mind and meditating. I have heard that your success is a direct result of your personal development and I really believe that to be true. How can you stretch, grow and flourish with the same mindset you continuously shrink in? You can’t! You must intellectually evolve, your life is constantly unfolding and you are steadily evolving. Personal development is a must in order to reduce tension and stress and increase positive energy and realistic optimism.
Stop Worrying About The Future
Worrying does us absolutely no good. Instead, make a plan. A well thought out and executed plan will boost your confidence, improve your discipline and achieve the goals that are important in your life.
The first step is to think about everything you want to do on a general scale. Does some of those goals require prerequisites, meaning do they need support or for other smaller goals to be accomplished first? If so, those goals should be on the top of the list that you will prioritize. Once you have all the goals you want to achieve, prioritize them in order of sequence and importance. Pick 1-3 goals to begin working on in different areas of your life. I don’t suggest working on more than one thing in one area because you want to succeed and not frustrate yourself into inaction.
Next, you want to develop three action steps for each goal. This will give your plan strategy and action. Then, you get to work. It’s not going to be pretty in the beginning, assess your plan weekly to tweak and modify when needed. Like everything else in life this takes practice. You will get better and as you collect wins you will be inspired and motivated to elevate!
If you need a little more insight, sign up for a free 20 minute consultation with me.
As always, I am rooting for you!