I am someone who has been struggling with anxiety all my life. Some days, it’s there when I wake up and it’s there to put me to sleep.
Over the recent months, my anxiety became much worse.
So how do you fight anxiety? You don’t. If you are an anxious person, chances are, you always will be. But living with anxiety can be a totally different experience for you.
I wanted to share with you two things that work for me personally.
- The first step is to acknowledge that you are experiencing anxiety. It may sound silly, but this really does help you separate from your anxiety and gain a little more control over it. You can literally say out loud:
“I am experiencing anxiety right now”.
This will help your brain catch a break and understand that this is something that is temporarily happening to you. It will pass. You will become the observer of yourself going through an emotion.
- Next thing you need to do is describe how this emotion feels in your body. How do you describe anxiety to someone, who has never experienced it before? What does anxiety feel like for me? If I were to describe it to someone, I would say I feel like, on a bad day, my chest is full of bees. It feels like a constant vibration in my body. Sometimes it is so loud that it is hard to focus on anything else. Mild anxiety feels like butterflies. It is still distracting but in a less brutal way and it doesn’t feel like. I’m going to die.
So next time you find yourself feeling anxious and unable to focus, try doing exactly these two steps. Tell yourself, that this is just you experiencing anxiety. Sometimes it even helps talking about yourself as another person – like, wow, this is Maria experiencing a bad case of anxiety today. Then you describe what it feels like for you today – today, my anxiety feels like a buzz in my brain, or like I am covered in cotton wool and have gone numb (these are borrowed emotions from my clients with anxiety).
Then close your eyes and remember to just breathe. You are a human experiencing all sorts of emotions on this earth. This is the price we pay for being living creatures on this planet.
So how does anxiety feel for you on a bad day?
Let me know in the comments or send me a DM