How to Control Your Anxiety

Anxiety can strike on a random evening or morning and can snowball out of control, disconnecting you from the world and putting your professional and social life at risk. The world will continue to move forward, whether or not you are stuck in a state of anxiety, so it’s best to remain on top of your anxious feelings. Here are a number of effective ways to remain calm and in control of your physical and mental state:

Anxiety is never easy to handle. It is even more difficult to entirely push it aside and carry on striving to reach your full potential. All of us, at some point in our lives, have been faced with trying to control our anxious feelings. They sometimes manifest suddenly without warning, leaving us on edge waiting for the crushing wave to hit.

Breaking the Cycle of Anxious Thought

Anxiety, the out-of-control child of our ‘flight or fight’ survival mechanism, arises from the idea that we are not in complete control of our lives and feel that external events disproportionally impact us. Instead of getting stuck in a loop of anxious thought, we must remind ourselves that we cannot control everything.

Once you begin making up scenarios of how an event will go wrong — stop and breathe. Focus on maintaining power over your own thoughts and mind because worrying about a possible future event achieves nothing.

Understand What Situations Make You Anxious

It is vital that when we try to get to the bottom of our anxiety-producing events, that we cut out the noise and hone in on the core of an issue. Often something as benign as a delayed train can cause full blown anxiety attacks because of a snowball-like effect of solvable problems building on top of other solvable problems. Most likely, there are common triggers that will set your anxiety off. The first step is identifying these, the second is to know how to either avoid such triggers, or suppress the triggers when they arise. Look at yourself, and understand that to every negative thought, a positive one exists around the corner.

Positive Thoughts About Yourself

Thinking positively may seem difficult for those with anxiety. Any problem can appear from out-of-nowhere and we’re frozen with fear. This leads to negative ideas about our looks, social status, personality, and even about the very fact that we have anxiety!

We must turn this thinking around. Tell yourself: I am beautiful. I am worthy of love, of friendship, and positivity! Even the worst cases of anxiety that prevent us from even getting out of bed in the morning. The situation or event ahead can seem daunting but remember, all you have to do is relax and show up. Then you can handle whatever is thrown at you.

Deep-Breathing Really Works

While anxiety stems from a flood of panicked neurons to our brain, there are fortunately some physical steps we can take to remain calm and in control.

Imagine all the negative images and thoughts clouding your mind. Embrace them. Graphically visualize them. Now breathe them in deeply and slowly. Then as you breathe out imagine those thoughts leaving your body. As they leave your body, imagine they are scattered into a million pieces. Repeat.

Breathing is often down-played, but can be the opening to a calm demeanor. Go to a class for yoga or meditation, where steady breathing practices are integrated. Or, try natural products that promote calmness and control in the body like ashwagandha or maca. If your anxiety is linked to physical pain or injury, or if you have dental issues diagnosed by Fourth Ward Dentistry causing you to worry, that naturally reduce joint pains, inflammation and skin rashes. Natural supplements and mental exercises together can help pave the way to a calmer outlook on life.

Battle Your Anxiety, Become Stronger

The road to recovering from paralyzing anxiety is not an easy one. You must find the strength inside yourself to break the cycle of one bad thought leading to another. We only get one life, and every day that anxiety keeps us in bed is another day we will never get back.

Sometimes coming up with a mantra to repeat to yourself will eventually put a stop to that voice in your head. Saying things like “I am the best.” or “I am unstoppable” can actually begin to stick in your brain. Even if in the beginning you do not believe those sayings, remember, the mind is a muscle and is capable of growing stronger. Having a true dialogue with your anxiety is crucial to ensuring it does not prevent you from living your life and reaching your potential. It is only human to experience stress and anxiety, and we have many tools at our disposable to ensure we control our anxiety and not the other way around.