Thursday, September 20, 2012

Just Breathe

Anxiety plagues everyone at some point in their life. That nervous feeling in your stomach, your heart and mind racing, and a feeling of panic about whatever it is that's troubling you.
It sucks.
There's no delicate way to put it. It especially sucks if it develops into a full blown panic attack. I've been known to suffer from these (I get it from my mom) a little more than the average person, but I'm grateful that they're not at the scale where they impact my life significantly. I'm not medicated or even diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, but I've had to learn how to deal with these panic attacks. Here's just a few things that help me when my anxiety level gets too high.

  1. Breathe deeply and slowly | This is first step to calming yourself down. Focus on inhaling and exhaling and your mind starts to slowly focus less on your worries. This will also help slow your heart rate if it's getting up as well. For a little bit, only think about your breathing.
  2. Take a drive with the music turned up | This is what I do the most when I get stressed out. I even have a specific playlist. There's something about driving around with no place to be that allows me to calmly sort through my thoughts. I took a lot of drives my freshman year of college.
  3. Get lost in a good book or movie | This is a great, old stand-by. Immerse yourself for a while in something that has absolutely nothing to do with what you're worrying about. Once you've removed yourself from the situation for a little bit, you're less likely to panic about it.
  4. Vent (for a little bit) to your best friend | A quick venting session never hurt anyone, but there comes a point when you need to stop talking about it and take action.
  5. Indulge in your favorite Starbucks drink- no matter how many calories | Treat yourself! A small boost of caffeine and sugar might be exactly what you need to feel like you can conquer the world.
  6. Paint your nails | This is another quick break when you really need a distraction. Personally, I'm terrible at painting my nails so I really have to concentrate. There's no room in my mind for anything else!
  7. Write about it | For me, sometimes it takes organizing my thoughts into coherent sentences on paper to achieve sudden clarity. I don't really keep a journal, but I have a password-protected file on my computer that I use to spill everything that's going on in my mind if I feel like I'm bottling it up. It's so cathartic! 
  8. Remind yourself that no matter what happens- you are enough | This is the most important thing. You can do it. I promise. Don't let anything be bigger than your own determination and strength. Tap into every resource you have and you can do anything.
Love and hugs, 
"So this is the part where I'm supposed to tell you it's not scary. Well, it is. But fear is natural, fear is good- it just means you're growing." -Unknown

1 comment:

  1. I definitely get my anxious tendencies from my mama too. I make a lot of lists, and run a lot. No matter how slow I go, it calms me down. When I run I cannot help but be grateful to be alive and so blessed, half the time it is the only thing that keeps me sane, hah!