We’ve all had those days. In fact, I’d be lying if I told you I hadn’t had a lot of them lately.
Life spins out of control. No matter how hard you try, it seems to take its course in a way that is anything but what you had envisioned.
As a result, you want to quit. You want to throw in the towel. Game over.
But you can’t. Period.
If there’s one thing I can tell you about recovering from an anxiety-driven life, it’s this.
Beating anxiety takes persistence.
I realize that there are numerous programs, books and experts that promise a quick fix for anxiety. In the blink of an eye, it seems like there is a monumental cure.
But in my experience, this is a sad attempt to sell a myth. Yes, there is an answer, but it isn’t a fast one.
The truth is that the “miracle cure” for anxiety can be summed up in two words.
Persistence and balance.
Sure, you can begin to manage anxiety expediently. Some of these programs offer helpful tools that can be used immediately. And that’s a positive thing.
That said, it’s a lot more complicated than that.
Think about how it feels to train for a running race. (If you aren’t a runner, imagine another difficult goal to achieve.) Training takes consistent and differing activities to get lasting results.
You don’t just lace up your shoes and run six miles the first time you run, right? If you do, you’ll be initially charged. However, you’ll be so sore tomorrow that you’ll most likely quit.
Instead, you work your way up to six miles by training on a regular basis. It’s a step by step process.
The same is true for anxiety management.
Anxiety management isn’t a one-stop-shop. It, like running, takes regular practice.
You can’t just train some days and throw in the towel the others. This simply doesn’t work.
You have to have a plan. But how do you do this?
Training to manage anxiety begins by laying out all of the coping tools that make sense to you. It’s like creating a pie chart. Each piece plays an important part in the big picture.
You can start by asking yourself the following questions:
- Are you drawn to deep breathing exercises? If so, how can you add breathing exercises to your routine?
- Which friends can you reach out to? Have you created a “safe friends” list?
- Have you contracted the services of a therapist? If not, would this be a good asset in your strategy?
- Are you interested in yoga or other calming exercises that are known to help with anxiety management? Is there a yoga studio near where you live?
- Have you created a gratitude journal?
- Can you explore mindfulness and other coping strategies?
- Are you a spiritual person? If so, are you utilizing this resource?
- What isn’t working in your journey? Are there changes that you can begin to make that will improve your life?
The truth is that anxiety management is a complex, varied life strategy. For example, this is how my anxiety management strategy can be summed up in a pie chart.
My life is broken down into various aspects, that as a whole, make anxiety manageable. The other thing to know is that what works for me might not work for you-and vice versa.
Finding an anxiety management strategy is about making your own recipe for success. You’ll try lots of things, and then you’ll spice it up your own way. You might do more breathing exercises than I do, or you might find that you don’t want to see a therapist.
This is all ok.
The important thing is that you are consistently trying. Persistence is the most important key to anxiety management. Period.
Today, take the time to write down your coping strategies. Make your own pie chart. Then analyze how you’re utilizing these resources in the big picture.
You’ll be surprised as to how many resources you have. In fact, many of these resources may go unnoticed. The key is to be persistent every single day.
Stay tuned. In the next post, we’ll talk about how to use individual coping strategies productively. I’m so glad that you’ve joined me on this journey!
Copyright: <a href=’http://www.123rf.com/profile_pixelsaway’>pixelsaway / 123RF Stock Photo</a>