If you struggle with anxiety or chronic stress, identify the key influencers in your life. For instance, take a good look at your relationships (who surrounds you), your physical health (are you taking care of your body), and mental health (self-talk, habits, and mindset). Now each of these categories unpacks into many different facets.
Everyone is unique, no one treatment for anxiety is going to work for everyone. Depending on the type of anxiety and severity, it will require different paths to treatment. But regardless of your situation, the first step is focusing on improvement. Congrats! If you’re reading this, you’re already on that path.
Another important thing to remember with anxiety is that treatment will take time. It’s frustrating I know, but you won’t get better overnight. If you see a product or a treatment claiming that to be the case, don’t trust it. It’s going to take time. For many of us it’s a life-long effort. And that’s okay.
None of us would voluntarily sign up for this, but it’s the situation we’re in and self-loathing only adds to the problems.
So what can you do?
Surround Yourself with the Right People
You become of the average of the five people you hang around most. Choose wisely. Think about those who you spend the most time with. Do they lead the type of life you want to live? Are they a positive influence on your life? If the answer is no to either of these questions, it might be time for a change.
This doesn’t mean you should turn your back on those who need your support in times of need or to abandon family members. However, it does mean you need to value your time wisely. It also means to need to set boundaries with the people that aren’t helping you become a better person.
It’s okay to say no. It’s okay to choose what is best for you.
Take Care of Your Body
You only get one body, you might as well take care of it. Want to hear the good news? Even if you haven’t been the best to your body in recent years, you can change. Today.
The human body is extremely resilient and fantastic at adapting to harsh conditions. But that doesn’t mean you should put on the pressure! Give your body adequate fuel with a balanced diet. Help it function properly by exercising regularly.
Poor diet and lack of exercise can cause anxiety and often worsen symptoms. Eliminating processed foods, sugar, and excess caffeine from your diet is tough. But making these diet changes and adding an exercise routine can make a meaningful impact in your life.
Take Care of Your Mind
Taking care of your mind may sound a little silly when you struggle with anxiety. After all it’s your mind that is creating the irrational fears and thoughts.
Just like diet and physical habits, we have thought habits and mental health habits as well. Some habits such as practicing gratitude and mindfulness are great, where others such as negative self-talk or replaying failures are not good habits. Keep the good, change the bad.
Start a morning/evening journaling routine. Write down things that bothered you during the day, things you’re grateful for, and brainstorm ideas to make the next day better. This is a simple habit that is rather easy to introduce. It’s a great starting point as it can help you become more aware of your current problems which can shed light on ways to improve.
Pay attention to your thoughts throughout the day. When the negative spiral of anxiety thoughts arises, let them be. Rather than trying to push the anxious thoughts down, let them pass through you and pay attention to how they make you feel. This counter-intuitive approach to negative thoughts can help them come and go rather.
Final Thoughts: What Do I Do from Here?
This just scratches the surface of the road to fighting anxiety. Learn as much as you can about the type of anxiety you’re struggling with and seek expert advice on your condition. There are lots of natural anxiety relief techniques out there. Don’t ever be afraid to ask for help and don’t ever feel like you’re in this alone. Millions of people struggle with anxiety disorders and many aren’t seeking proper treatment. You are not alone. You can get better. You are amazing.