Happy New Month! I’ve genuinely missed writing. I feel like I say this all the time, but I’m so sorry that I haven’t been as consistent as I should be. But don’t worry, I’ll work on that.
I wanted to talk about something that has been on my heart for a while: Anxiety.
I would not go as far as to say that I have ever been clinically diagnosed with anxiety. But, what I can say, is that I have had anxious thoughts and periods of deep worry and stress. If you are going through anxiety, know that you are not alone.
I wanted to share some tips that might help you when you are dealing with anxiety in your life.
1. Identify The Problem
They say the first step with dealing with a problem, is figuring out that you have a problem. So what is making you anxious? Is it a culmination of different issues that you’re having in your life? Is it an irrational fear? Is it something that has a potential solution? When you’ve figured out some of the things that are making you anxious, write them down. Psychologically, writing your anxious thoughts can make you feel like you have released them from your head. It can also make you realize that your problems may not be as big as they seemed in your head.
2. Figure Out The Triggers
Do you become anxious when you reflect on a certain aspect of your life? Do you become anxious when you talk to certain people. Figure out what is triggering these thought patterns and emotions.
Once you’ve identified your triggers, it’s important to see if there is a plausible resolution. For example, if you are having anxious thoughts about graduating from college and finding a job, you could sit down and make a tentative post-grad plan. The plan is not going to magically make all your problems go away. But, if you take small actions daily, it can make the task at hand, less daunting.
I’m also aware that some anxious thoughts and feelings don’t have a solution. Maybe you have struggled through abuse or the death of a loved one. Maybe your anxious feelings are continuous and there is no particular trigger.
I recommend seeking counseling or therapy. Your therapist could work with you to see what types of coping mechanisms you could use to deal with your emotional pain.
Channeling your energy into something creative is a good coping mechanism. Writing poetry, painting, singing, dancing, are all ways that can help you cope with those feelings. Exercise is another great way, because your body releasing mood lifting endorphins or chemicals that can alleviate stress.
3. Talk It Out
This can go hand and hand with therapy. But if you don’t have access to a therapist, please call a friend. I know you might feel like you are bothersome. But, a genuine friend or family member, will be willing to listen to you as you vent.
Bottling up your emotions is probably the worst thing you can do. It’s so easy to internalize your fears and dwell on them. But when you speak it out, it’s no longer a weight on your mind. It becomes something that others can help you with. Life is not meant to be dealt with alone.
Seeking wise counsel also creates a space for people to potentially give you advice on dealing with your worries.
4. Practice Optimism
This is definitely easier said than done. My mom always said that why are you worried about something that has a possible solution. If there is a will, there is a way.
When something negative happens that is causing you worry or fear, try to see something good about the situation. For example, if you are anxious about money, think about it as an opportunity to practice being frugal. Or, you could see money issues as something that is going to build your character and make you more appreciative of the wealth you will have in the future. Also 9 times out of 10, there is a solution to the problem, even if it’s an option that you don’t care for, like selling a valuable item or getting a second job.
5. Rely On Your Faith
God already knows what your dealing with. He hears your prayers, even if they seem unanswered.
Philippians 4: 6-7 (NIV) “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you
You don’t have to work through all your problems alone. You have a God that is working to bring you out of all of your worries, anxieties, and stresses.
He’s got your back. You are meant to live in perfect peace. But if you are dealing with anxiety, ask God to give you that peace.
You may be in the midst of the storm, but when he gives you that peace, it will feel like you are cruising on a yacht.
That’s all I have for today. I hope this was helpful.