How You Can Manage Your Anxiety No Matter Where You Are
Anxiety management techniques you can do anywhere. Between moving ahead in a career, taking care of family obligations, maintaining a romantic relationship, and coping with current events, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. This is especially true for those who already suffer from anxiety. Also if you suffer from depression, and other mental health issues. The good news is that there are simple coping strategies for difficult situations that are appropriate for public or private use. Adapted from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, these techniques will help you remain in control of your emotions and manage your thoughts.
Make a List
This first technique challenges you to synthesize a list of items according to an established system. You are asked to name one animal for every letter of the alphabet – aardvark, bonobo, cow, etc. – or any other item with a system that’s familiar to you. You might challenge yourself to use a second language. Make a list of less familiar items. Organize them by a numerical system. Items can be listed silently, verbalized, or written down if that better fits your situation. Repeat listing unique items in the same system until you feel calm.
If you experience dissociation when faced with stressful situations, try a grounding technique like a sensory check-in. This technique requires you to name one sensation you are currently experiencing for each of your five senses. On a busy street, you might notice that you see cars at an intersection, feel the wind on your skin, smell food from street vendors, taste exhaust fumes in the air, and hear the noise of traffic. This exercise keeps you present in your body and allows you to better face the cause of your anxiety.
Repeat a Mantra
Mantras are a helpful way to hold on to the truth of what you believe and who you are when anxiety is spiraling out of control. During a time when you feel safe and secure, think about what stressors bring on the feelings of anxiety you are trying to control. Once you’ve isolated your triggers, create some mantras to help you fight the fear. A person with a restrictive eating disorder who is anxious about eating and gaining weight could tell themselves, “food is not the enemy”, while a person who struggles with feeling safe in crowds could repeat the phrase, “I am safe”. Controlling your internal narrative is an effective way to mitigate anxiety.
Anxiety can cause your heart rate to increase and your breathing to become shallow. A parasympathetic response will cause a feedback loop. This tells your brain that your body is stressed, increasing the mental stress you feel. Conscious breathing and relaxation will help break that cycle. To start, breathe in through your nose for five to eight seconds. Then hold your breath for four, and breathe out through your mouth for the same amount of time you took to breathe in. Repeat the cycle for at least one minute. Taking the time to intentionally slow your breathing and calm your body will decrease the chances of going into a full anxiety attack and allow you to feel your best when confronted with an issue.
Making lists, checking in with your body, repeating a mantra, and breathing deeply can be done anywhere at any time. Managing mental health can be a challenge. These easy techniques can help tame anxiety before it gets out of hand.
Anxiety Management Techniques You Can Do Anywhere
Seek the help you need today. We have a talented team of therapist to help you understand and implement ways to better understand anxiety. Meet the team and choose from one that fits your personality. Give us a call today at 407-067-1327.