10 Anxiety Antidotes…(Guest Post)…

anxietyantidotesguidoccio

For many of us, worry is a habit. Our minds whirl as we over-analyze and over-think each situation.

Is the report good enough?

Why isn’t he calling back?

What if the loan doesn’t come though?

It’s easy to become overwhelmed and let opportunities slip away as we ruminate about past events or worry about the future. To improve the quality of our lives, we need to find and implement appropriate stress busters.

Consider the following anxiety antidotes:

  1. Breathe. Whenever you are anxious, deeply and calmly breathe in and out. As you draw your next breath, focus on the rise of your abdomen on the in-breath and feel the sensation of the air as it fills your lungs and leaves through your nostrils.

  2. Journal. Set aside ten minutes each day to write about your feelings, relationships, triggers, and goals. Write quickly and do not linger over each page. As time progresses, you will notice changes in your writing style and content. Solutions may emerge and help you improve your present situation.

  3. Take regular breaks away from social media and your devices. Use those pockets of time to meditate, stretch, soak in a bubble bath, complete a crossword puzzle, flip through a travel brochure, or read the first chapter in a book that has been sitting on your night stand.

  4. Clean out your purse or wallet at the end of each day. You may be surrounded by chaos, but this small task can help you psychologically declutter and feel more in control of your day.

  5. Take a brisk walk in the evening with a friend or spouse. The exercise will increase blood flow to your heart and brain. You will also have an opportunity to talk about your day and share your frustrations.

  6. Surround yourself with inspiration. Follow the advice that Blake Mycoskie gave in his book, Start Something That Matters (2012). In the early days of the TOMS start-up, the young entrepreneur experienced many scary moments. His line of credit was often fully drawn, and his credit cards were maxed out. Lacking a board of directors who could advise and motivate him, Mycoskie surrounded himself with inspirational quotations and read the biographies of successful people.

  7. Display your trophies. It is easy to overlook your accomplishments when you allow them to be overshadowed by negative thoughts. Instead, surround yourself with evidence of past successes by keeping awards, trophies, and congratulatory notes on display in your home. If space is at a premium, take pictures of the memorabilia and organize them in a scrapbook.

  8. Stop mindreading. When family and friends do not respond immediately or appropriately (in your opinion), try not to react or judge too hastily. If someone does not answer your text, do not assume she is snubbing or avoiding you. Instead, consider all the possible reasons, not just the negative ones, for the lack of response:

  • The battery is dead.

  • She left her phone at home.

  • She’s out of range.

As you become more neutral, you will also find yourself becoming less judgmental.

  1. Take up a sport or hobby that forces you to pay attention. When you play tennis you must be aware of everything that is happening. You do not have time to worry about the shot you missed because another one is coming right back at you. Similarly, you must concentrate when you play bridge or poker. If your attention strays, you risk losing the game.

  2. Ask others for help. You may be pleasantly surprised to discover they are willing to pitch in and share the load. It doesn’t always have to be done perfectly and by you.

joanne-guidoccio

(See Joanne’s previous post Can You Improve the Odds? – TSRA)

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