photo: Project Social T
Anxiety is crippling. As I write this, I have a huge deadline to meet in a couple of weeks, which I am starting to worry about, among other things. And I am certainly not alone; it is estimated that around one-third of us will encounter feelings of worry or fear throughout our lifetimes. As debilitating as anxiety can be, there are a few methods you can use to combat it:
1. Write it down
I will always be a huge advocate of journaling. Whenever I feel very anxious, to the point of feeling almost trapped, I take at least 15 minutes of quiet and comfort and spill all my emotions onto a fresh page.
This exercise works almost like a brain dump: by writing down exactly how you’re feeling, how long you’ve been feeling it for and exploring all the possible triggers to your feelings of anxiety, it will help you to rationalize your emotions and put them into perspective.
2, Talk to someone
Much like journaling, this is about identifying and working through your feelings, by unloading them. Find a loved one; a friend or a therapist, especially if your anxiety persists for long periods of time. Getting emotional support and communicating with someone you trust can help to alleviate the stress and anxiety which can build up when we overthink or keep it bottled in.
3. Get off social media
Social media depicts the positive aspects of our friends’ lives more than the negative ones. Switching off can prevent feelings of inadequacy and comparison which can exacerbate anxiety.
It also means you won’t resent your colleague for posting a status that sounds more entertaining than your solo Netflix and Chill night in.
4. Take time out for fun
Whatever it is – drawing, sewing, meeting friends – incorporate a window of fun, mindfulness or laughter to overcome how you are feeling, once you have identified the triggers.
5. Bitesize your day/week
Break your day/ week up into manageable tasks so that you do not get overwhelmed. Make a mega-list of all the activities you need to achieve over your chosen time period and organize the tasks into categories.
This will help keep you motivated. Include even things you might not think of as an achievement, like getting up at a certain hour or preparing your clothes for the next day before you sleep.
You’ve got this!
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