Experiencing stress is normal, but when feelings of panic, fear, and dread consistently interfere with the quality of your life, you may find it necessary to adopt practices to manage this anxiety and live more fully.
Anxiety is a common concern, and symptoms of an anxiety disorder can be disruptive, distracting, and debilitating. Anyone can experience anxiety during stressful situations, and learning how to effectively manage this exhausting feeling, especially for those with an anxiety disorder, can help reduce your stress and improve your daily life.
While the idea of mindfulness may conjure thoughts of meditation, there are plenty of simple and efficient mindfulness practices that you can adopt to help you manage your anxiety. One of the most common recommendations for individuals suffering from anxiety involves breathing exercises; when you feel anxious, try closing your eyes, taking deep breaths, and slowly counting up to 10 or 20. This exercise helps to eliminate the influence of external stimuli, steady your heart rate, and distract your mind with the methodic task of counting numbers.
Being mindful of your physical and mental states, especially when experiencing anxiety, can help you overcome your stress and panic. Meditation, yoga, and massage therapy are other practices associated with mindfulness that may benefit you; however, these examples are not practical or appealing to everyone. Still, mindfulness can keep you present and grounded, preventing anxiety from overwhelming you.
Reframe Your Thoughts
Paranoid or exaggerated thoughts often accompany bouts of anxiety; actively combating them in favor of a more logical and productive mindset will help you manage your anxiety and view your life more realistically. Instead of allowing these thoughts to fester and dominate your life, making a dedicated effort to challenge and confront them can help you better manage your anxiety.
Anxious thoughts can be disturbing and upsetting. Thinking negatively can harm your mental health and prevent you from living freely and reaching your potential. One of the most effective ways to combat these thoughts is to actively question them. By questioning your negative thoughts, you can challenge your fears, identify how truthful and realistic they are, and dismiss the improbable ideas while reinforcing more neutral and positive ones.
Another way to reframe your anxious thoughts is by putting them in perspective. Remember that you cannot control every aspect of your life and that subscribing to that belief can cause more harm than good. Additionally, striving for your best rather than perfection can be a productive exercise in managing your expectations and reducing the pressure you put on yourself.
Make and Maintain Connections
A strong support group can make a big difference in the wellness of your mental health. When trying to manage your anxiety, healthy connections with others may give you more outlets, resources, and inner strength.
Confiding with friends and family members about your anxiety can be challenging, but doing so can help you stay connected with loved ones who might otherwise not know what you are experiencing. If you have concerns about your well-being or ability to perform daily tasks, reaching out to these trusted loved ones can provide you with emotional and practical support.
Getting involved with your community through volunteering initiatives or small groups dedicated to supporting individuals’ mental health can also help you manage your anxiety. Volunteering provides a distraction from everyday stress as well as a goal-oriented program and a supportive community. Joining a small group or mental health program can connect you with individuals who understand your struggles from a personal perspective, as well as mental health professionals, all of whom can give you advice and guidance.
Get Active and Stay Healthy
Managing anxiety becomes easier when you prioritize your physical health as well as your mental well-being. Regular physical activity encourages your body to produce endorphins, which may help reduce anxiety and pain. Exercise also promotes better cardiovascular health; because anxiety disorders can have adverse effects on heart health, physical activity can help strengthen the body and promote longevity and wellness.
In addition to introducing regular physical activity into your routine, you should also prioritize a healthy, nutritional diet with consistent meals. Skipping a meal can lower your blood sugar, resulting in increased feelings of anxiety.
Getting a sufficient amount of sleep each night is also essential for good physical and mental health. When you feel anxious, your body and mind need additional time to rest. Accommodate this need as much as possible to reduce stress and promote wellness.
Feeling stressed is usually normal, but when your feelings of anxiety become overwhelming, finding ways to manage your symptoms and combat anxious thoughts is essential. For some individuals with anxiety, practicing mindfulness, reframing negative thoughts, making meaningful connections, and taking care of their physical health is enough to help them live more fully. However, severe anxiety and anxiety disorders can be debilitating, and seeking additional help and guidance may be wise. Mental health professionals can provide tools, resources, and exercises to aid in anxiety management; you may also find that certain medications can be useful in mitigating more disruptive symptoms. Those who are struggling with managing symptoms of anxiety on their own may consider reaching out to loved ones and mental health professionals to support their mental wellness. Here at Sober Life, we are here to support you and your mental health. If you are trying to manage your anxiety and want additional help, call Sober Life at (619) 542-9542 today.