First off, I’d like to apologize for not posting in so long. Had a crazy past week, so I didn’t get to it, but everything is back to the usual routine again, so let’s get started.
Anxiety is normal. Everyone worries about their loved ones, about their jobs, about their whole life in general sometimes. But you can overstep the line of normal worrying to worrying about every little detail or yours and everyone else’s life.
It’s ok to worry about certain things and situations, if you then make a plan to change and/or improve that certain thing so you can stop worrying about it. For example: it’s ok to worry about making rent if it helps you to actually make the rent; it’s ok to worry about your well-being if it helps you put down that fifth cookie. But after a certain degree, worrying won’t help you. Obsessing about the future won’t prevent the bad things from happening and make the good things start happening. Worrying about a situation, just because you think that expecting the worst will make it easier when the worst doesn’t happen, isn’t healthy. It’s not why God gave us the ability to worry. He gave us this ability so that we would use it to survive and further improve our lives, not so we could worry about the horrible things the future may or may not bring.
When anxiety gets out of control, it starts to have various side effects that start with the body and eventually seep into your whole life.
- elevated heart rate
- shallow breathing
- muscle tension
- disrupted sleep
- gastrointestinal distress
- relationships start being affected
- becoming anti social
These are just some of the side effects. The list goes on and on. Up until this point, you may have thought your overthinking was pretty much under control. But then you see what it does to your life, and you realize that anxiety is controlling more than it should be. That’s how it was for me anyway. I’ve had my share of anxiety, and I thought that lately I was handling it pretty well, but then I go and do research for a post like this and it hits me that worrying is still controlling way too much of my life.
When I first starting dealing with an overwhelming amount of anxiety, I was stupid enough to think that that’s just how life was. It’s not! There’s things you can do to control your anxiety and lead a life with way less stress than you every imagined. Below are the tips that have helped me in the past.
God. First and foremost, you’re going to need God. You can’t live without Him. He’s the one person you can share everything with without being judged, He’s the one person who always has the best advice, and He’s the one person who will always, always, always be there for you…if you let Him.
Well-balanced diet. Your body is more affected by the foods you feed it than you might think. To put it into a few words, balance out your protein, fats, and carbs, drink like a freakin’ camel, take your vitamins, and don’t eat donuts (well maybe just a few, every now and then.:P)
Exercise. If you’re not into working out at the gym, then go for a walk, run, bike ride, hike, swim. Anything that gets your heart pumping and releases those “happy” endorphins.
Sleep. Your body wasn’t designed to stay up half the night. It gets exhausted and starts thinking irrationally. Try to get at least 8 hours of sleep every night. Your brain will thank you.
Time-out. Whether it’s meditating, stretching, praying, reading, take at least 15 minutes daily to yourself just to relax your body, mind, and soul.
Breathe. Breathe in deeply while counting to 4, hold that breath for a count of 7, then breathe out slowly while counting to 8. This slows your heart, calms your nerves, and helps you to focus on something other than overthinking.
Observe. If you feel an anxiety attack coming on, find one thing you can see, one thing you can hear, one thing you can smell, one thing you can taste, and one thing you can touch. This helps you get back in touch with reality.
Get a massage. Whenever you can, go get an hour long massage. It puts your muscles at ease as well as your mind.
Listen to music. Lie down in bed, put on those head phones, block out all your jumbled thoughts, and just listen to your music.
So these are my tips. They’ve helped me, still are helping me, and hopefully will be helping you now, too. I know that anxiety is stressful. It’s too stressful. So take your time-out, do whatever it is you need to do in order to control that anxiety (all the while keeping your health in mind) because no one deserves to live under this kind of pressure.