FIVE EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES FOR COPING WITH ANXIETY

Tiffani Davis, M.A., M.A.C.P.

Anxiety is a common emotion that many people face.

That should not be surprising given the historical times we’re living in with COVID-19, civil unrest, and financial uncertainties.

Signs of Anxiety:

· Feel anxious when the pressure is on   

· Unable to feel present, fixated with the future

· Worry over things that haven’t happened

· Struggle to calm your nerves in stressful situations

These are very normal feelings, but they can become overwhelming even in your day-to-day routines to the point they become emotionally and physically debilitating.


Extreme anxiety can hinder your everyday life. Anxiety about one thing can spiral out of control, causing you to worry about everything else. Anxiety can ruin your life if you let it. However, you can take control and learn to thrive in situations that challenge your resolve.

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These techniques can help you cope with your anxious feelings:

1. Practice Deep Breathing


It’s one of the most effective ways to cope with anxiety. Deep breaths get much-needed oxygen to your brain and throughout your body, relaxing your muscles. You can calm your mind and body down when you’d typically be stressed by increasing your air intake.


  • When you notice that you're beginning to get nervous, pay attention to your breathing. Practice deep breathing in a relaxed, private, comfortable environment where you're not rushed for a few days. Put your hand on your belly, and make your hand rise and fall with each breath. The 4-2-6 method is a simple way to keep track of breathing. Take in a slow, full breath to the count of 4, hold for 2, and then exhale slowly to the count of 6.


  • By practicing this deep breathing exercise, you'll be equipped to control your breathing when a stressful situation occurs. When the pressure is on, and you notice your body’s signs of anxiety, pay attention to your breathing and do what you've practiced.

2. Face Your Fears


If you worry constantly, you may purposefully stay in your comfort zone. Search for opportunities to stretch your mental boundaries in ways that aren't highly stressful. As you strengthen your mental fortitude by becoming more accustomed to taking on challenges in dealing with your nerves, give yourself greater challenges to increase your ability to handle them.


  • Purposefully put yourself into situations you aren't sure about to overcome the habit of shying away from things that stress you. This helps build your confidence. The more steps you take outside of your comfort zone, the more prepared you'll be when the real challenges of life cause you to feel anxious.



3. Exercise

Whenever possible avoid stagnation because your body was made to move. That’s why if you sit at a desk all day, you'll likely face greater challenges with worry and stress than someone who's always on the move. Exercise provides stress relief by giving you an outlet for frustration and boosts your overall self-confidence. Overall, exercising helps create a peaceful feeling and less anxiety on a consistent basis

Benefits of Dealing With Anxiety 

Learning to deal effectively with anxiety is a powerful skill that will benefit you in many ways.


· Your relationships with others will be impacted positively.

· Your self-confidence will increase as you develop the habit of appropriately responding to situations despite the fears inside you.

· You'll go after your dreams instead of giving up easily.

4. Eat Nutritiously


Often overlooked, but extremely important is to properly fuel your body. This includes drinking plenty of water, eating a balanced breakfast and small meals, and eating more often. Keep track of what you're eating in a daily log so that you can begin to notice patterns that sabotage your health.


  • When your body is fueled properly, the daily anxieties you experience will be less overwhelming.

5. Seek Professional Help


Sometimes, the issues you face with anxiety may require you to seek support from a trained professional. If you have been unsuccessful on your own, a trained professional such as a life coach may be your best to overcome these challenges. Whenever possible avoid stagnation because your body was made to move. That’s why if you sit at a desk all day, you'll likely face greater challenges with worry and stress than someone who's always on the move. Exercise provides stress relief by giving you an outlet for frustration and boosts your overall self-confidence. Overall, exercising helps create a peaceful feeling and less anxiety on a consistent basis.

Remember, it's not unusual to feel nervous during stressful times. But if you don’t have strategies to overcome those nerves, you can feel paralyzed and wreck your chances of experiencing the peace, joy, and success you deserve. Implement these five strategies today to effectively manage your feelings of anxiety and live victoriously over them.

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