It’s important to learn how to manage anxiety while working through change in order to stay healthy and happy. As someone who has struggled with anxiety since the age of five, I have learned a few ways to deal with my anxiety without letting it rob me of my joy. The anxiety I once feared no longer controls me and I’d like to share my tips with you so you can lead a balanced, joyful life as well.
1. Recognize Your Anxiety Triggers
I had wrist surgery back in July and this surgery caused me to lose months of work and pay. As a result, I got behind on paying my monthly bills. As the bills began to pile up, my anxiety level would rise each week because I knew I was deficient on funds, while running out of time to pay everything. Couple this with the recent death of my former magazine employer and I quickly had a recipe for disaster.
I knew that my anxiety was being stirred up by factors I could do nothing about. Rather than getting upset and blaming everyone for my misfortune, I chose to carefully evaluate these two factors and pray about them. Praying daily allows me to give the things I need help with to a higher deity. For those who adhere to a specific religion, you can talk to that deity in whatever way you need to as many times a day as necessary.
For those who do not have distinct spiritual beliefs, I suggest repeating a positive affirmation that serves as a daily guide such as this: “I flow through life with peace and ease.”
I also started journaling each day about what I was experiencing in my body and what thoughts were going through my mind during this time. By following this particular order, I realized that healing starts when we understand the triggers that set off our anxiety levels. From there, we can assess what plan of action is best to take to deal with these triggers.[ctt template=”4″ link=”VycQ6″ via=”yes” ]Healing starts when we understand the triggers that set off our anxiety levels. @TheHolisticates[/ctt]
2. Identify Anxiety Symptoms
Each individual experiences anxiety in different ways. Some experience panic attacks, while others suffer from sleep deprivation. Some individuals also become ill and can experience nausea or headaches. The next step is to pay attention to all symptoms. I found that both 10-minute meditation sessions in the mornings and journaling about each panic attack helped me become more aware of how my body was responding to external stimuli.
When we are not in touch with our feelings, we cannot correctly begin to heal our minds and bodies. As I was going through all of these symptoms and feeling so many sensations within my body, I continued to go through my ritual of journaling, prayer and meditation. Following this order helped me remain calm throughout the entire process which was not easy, since everything was happening all at once. The meditation helped subdue my mind after those anxiety attacks and the prayer time was necessary to deal with the sadness I was feeling because, for me, sadness can turn into a deep depression if not handled accordingly. It is important that we allow ourselves to feel each emotion as it passes through our bodies. By allowing myself to feel sad and grieve as I needed to, I could move forward and function a little better, instead of harboring pent-up and unreleased emotions.
4. Establish a Consistent Meditation Time
Meditating is good for quieting the mind and being still. I prefer to meditate in the mornings after I get up. I usually have 10-minute sessions, where I close my eyes and do some deep breathing. By making this a part of my daily ritual, my panic attacks dissipate and I can start my day in a calm and peaceful state of mind.
5. Take Up Yoga or Fitness Classes
Yoga mentally engages me and provides a great form of exercise. For newcomers, I recommend a 60-minute hot yoga class in a heated room of 98.6 degrees once or twice a week. I also like to take HIIT (high intensity interval training) classes, which are 45 minutes in duration. These classes are great for helping to burn calories, while getting a good cardio workout.
Over time, I have learned how to identify what I am experiencing and why certain triggers cause specific physical reactions within my body. I am not the biggest fan of sudden change, but life is full of uncomfortable situations. Using the above tips, you will be able to consistently manage your anxiety effectively, rather than leaning on medication, which may have side-effects. Working through change can become easier for you, while helping you grow on your journey of self-discovery.
Marie Williams is a certified tennis teaching professional and the former Online Editor for Black Tennis Magazine. She holds a Master of Journalism degree from the University of North Texas. In her spare time, Marie enjoys hatha and vinyasa yoga, pilates, nature walks, reading and journaling. You can follow her on Instagram and Facebook.