Last visit was: It is currently Fri Aug 07, 2020 11:09 am

All times are UTC - 4 hours

Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 9 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Anxiety Management Tools
PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 4:38 pm 
galactic orange
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2012 6:39 pm
Posts: 948
Location: Vancouver, BC
These are mindfulness exercises at a site called "Driving Peace" specifically thought to be helpful for dealing with anxiety. Some of them are guided meditations.

"Driving Peace"

“When you have come to the edge Of all light that you know And are about to drop off into the darkness Of the unknown, Faith is knowing One of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on or You will be taught to fly”

Offline Profile  
 Post subject: 15 Easy Ways to Beat Anxiety Now
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 8:14 pm 
admin goddess from hell
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 02, 2008 1:10 am
Posts: 12363
Any word or phrase highlighted in red is a link to another post on the site, so do take a look.

15 Easy Ways to Beat Anxiety Now
Posted by Giuliana Hazelwood, February 11, 2013

I’m halfway out the door in the morning with a heavy bag in one hand and a mug of coffee in the other. Then I wonder: Where did I put my keys? And so begins the 20-minute panicked reconnaissance mission for the keys I swore were on the coffee table. I start to feel flustered and irritable as I frantically search. My memory gets foggy as my heart starts to pound and my palms sweat. It’s another anxious morning.
Anxiety Alert — The Need-to-Know

Technically, anxiety is apprehension over an upcoming event. We anticipate the future with sometimes scary predictions that don’t necessarily have any basis in truth. In everyday life, anxiety’s physical and emotional symptoms can mean an increased heart rate (and even heart attack), poor concentration at work and school, sleeping problems, and just being a total Crankasaurus Rex to family, friends, and co-workers.

Anxiety and stress are physical and emotional responses to perceived dangers (that aren’t always real). And since most of us aren’t running from tigers or hunting and gathering in the woods, it’s often the little things that put us over the edge: an over-loaded email inbox, morning rush hour, or losing those keys before running out the door. Luckily, it’s easy to beat this kind of stress with just a few easy changes added throughout the day.

Note: If you feel like you might be dealing with a serious anxiety disorder, please talk to a medical professional about treatment. There are lots of options available to manage your symptoms. But if you’re looking to reduce daily anxiety, these 15 tips will get you on your way to being calm and collected in no time.

Cool as a Cucumber — Your Action Plan

1. Get enough sleep. Inconsistent sleep can have some serious consequences. Not only does it affect our physical health, but lack of sleep can also contribute to overall anxiety and stress. And sometimes it turns into a vicious cycle, since anxiety often leads to disruptions in sleep [1]. Especially when feeling anxious, try to schedule a full seven to nine hours of snooze time and see what a few nights of sweet slumber do for those anxiety levels throughout the day.

2. Smile. When work has got us down, it’s a good idea to take a quick break to get some giggles on. Research suggests that laughter can reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety, so consider checking out a funny YouTube clip to calm those jittery nerves [2].

3. De-clutter the brain. Physical clutter = mental clutter. A messy workspace can make it more difficult to relax and make it seem like our work is never-ending. So take 15 minutes or so to tidy up the living space or work area, and then make a habit of keeping things clean and anxiety-free. It’ll help us think rationally, and there won’t be as much room for anxiety.

4. Express gratitude. Studies have found expressing gratitude helps reduce anxiety, especially when we’re well-rested [3]. Start a gratitude journal to get in the mindset of appreciation, and out of the mindset of being overwhelmed.

5. Eat right. Anxiety can throw our bodies totally out of whack: Our appetite might change, or we might crave certain foods. But to give the body the support it needs, try eating more of foods that contain nutrients such as vitamin B and omega-3s, plus some healthy whole-grain carbohydrates. Studies have linked vitamin B with good mental health, and omega-3s may help reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety [4]. Whole-grain carbs help regulate levels of serotonin, the “feel-good” neurotransmitter that helps us remain calm. And even though our cravings might be telling us otherwise, research suggests that eating sugary and processed foods can increase symptoms of anxiety [5].

6. Learn to breathe. A useful tool to prevent panic attacks, the breath is also a great marker of where your anxiety level is at throughout the day. Short, shallow breaths signify stress and anxiety in the brain and body. On the flip side, consciously breathing, plus lengthening and strengthening the breath helps send signals to the brain that it’s okay to relax [6].

7. Meditate. By now most of us have heard that meditation is relaxing, but what scientists are also discovering is that meditation actually increases the amount of grey matter in the brain, essentially rewiring the body to stress less. A number of recent studies highlight the positive effects of meditation on anxiety, mood, and stress symptoms [7] [8]. Meditation is also a way to observe the brain, letting us figure out how our mind generates anxiety-provoking thoughts. And understanding the brain’s thought patterns can help create distance from those thoughts.

8. Create a vision board. If the future seems big and scary, try changing the thoughts about what lies ahead. Sometimes the mere act of setting concrete goals can take the edge off anxiety about future unknowns. Take an hour to produce a vision board that creates excitement about projects and possibilities to come. And for those who aren’t the crafty type, try making an e-vision board using Pinterest for some Pinspiration. While making the board, try using the T.H.I.N.K. tool: Is my thought true, helpful, inspirational, necessary and kind? If not, dump the thought.

9. Play around. Kids and animals seem to have an innate ability to play, without stressing about their overflowing inboxes. Until business offices give us recess breaks, we’ll have to take responsibility for our own playtime. Offer to take a friend’s dog out for a walk, or babysit for an afternoon to get out of your head and let the careless creatures lead by example.

10. Be silent. Plan for a time when you can completely disconnect. Start with increments of time that seem sustainable and doable for you, even if it’s just five minutes. That means phone off, no emails, no TV, no news, nothing. Let other people know they won’t be able to reach you so you can veg worry free. There’s some evidence that too much noise can boost our stress levels, so schedule some sacred silent time among all the ruckus of daily life.

11. Worry. Yes, we can cause ourselves to freak out, but only for a certain amount of time. When something weighs heavily on your mind, or you believe something terrible is most definitely going to occur, commit to only creating that worry for 20 minutes. Think of all the possible outcomes of the scenario, figure out some game plans, and then quit thinking about it after 20 minutes go by. Have a friend call after the allotted time has passed to avoid the temptation of going over the time limit. Or schedule some of that playtime right afterward.

12. Plan ahead. Fight anxious thoughts in advance by preparing for the day ahead. Try making a schedule or a to-do list and develop habits that increase productivity. So instead of spending 10 extra minutes every morning frantically looking for those keys, make a habit of always putting them in the same place when you come home. Lay out clothes the night before, pack a gym bag and leave it by the door, or make lunch ahead of time. Focus on how to “un-think” the anxiety-producing beliefs by prepping before they pop up.

13. Visualize anything positive. When confronted with anxious thoughts, take a moment to visualize yourself handling the situation with calm, ease, and clarity. Try not to pay attention to the current mental state; just focus on the feeling of smooth-sailing through the storm. The technique is called “guided imagery” or “guided visualization” and can help reduce feelings of stress [9].

14. Smell something relaxing. Try sniffing some calming oils. Basil, anise, and chamomile are great choices; they reduce tension in the body and help increase mental clarity.

15. Hang out. People who have lots of social support tend to react less negatively to stress than those who fly solo. That’s probably because socializing stimulates the production of the hormone oxytocin, which has an anxiety-reducing effect [10]. So the next time a freak-out appears on the horizon, grab some pals and go for a walk or just have a quick chat.

The Takeaway

In an ideal world, we wouldn’t come up with thoughts that produce stress or anxiety. But we’re human and inevitably worry about things. So when we do start to freak, there are lots of little steps we can take to change our thoughts, calm the brain, relax the body, and get back in the game.

And, as always, be sure to check with a psychotherapist if these tips don’t cut it and you need a little extra help tackling a more significant anxiety issue!

Whispered words of wisdom,
Let it be.

~~ John Lennon

Offline Profile  
 Post subject: Re: Mindfulness Exercises for Anxiety
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 2:38 am 
admin goddess from hell
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 02, 2008 1:10 am
Posts: 12363
Another mindfulness exercise, again, something you can do anywhere because you do it 24 hours a day your entire life: breathing.

Breathing into awareness
March 14, 2013 by ljanson1230

In the hustle and bustle of our daily lives, our minds can become tangled up in some pretty tricky traps. Think of the traps like nets. The more nets our minds get caught in, the more net we’re carrying around. The more net we’re carrying around, the more likely they are to get tangled, making it really difficult to see what is happening right in front of us. When we can’t see and we feel the weight of the nets bearing down on us, distressing emotions can start to build in our bodies—frustration, anger, sadness, fear, exhaustion, loneliness. And there we are, entangled in heavy nets, feeling exhausted, frazzled and not being able to see where we’re walking. It’s not a fun situation, but we’ve all been there—for one reason or another, our minds love taking the bait.

Removing the net is the goal, but often this process can cause the nets to get even more tangled and increase the distress of the moment. Some approaches that tend to tighten the knots are pretending that you can see accurately through your entanglements, judging and criticizing yourself for falling into the traps, and walking around blindly, which usually results in getting caught in more nets.

A great place to start to loosen the grip of the nets and begin to see clearly again is with our breath. We have a constant, soothing ocean that is moving in and out of us at all times. Turning to the breath with mindfulness can give us a moment to calm down, recognize what we’re feeling because of the tangled mess that our minds are in, and formulate a wise plan for how to get out from underneath it all. Think of it as a platform that will allow you to get a bird’s eye view on the gnarly mess that has come to shade your vision, so that you can figure out which knot to tackle first.

Finding this platform takes practice. Our breath is constantly going in and out, but our minds aren’t readily trained to tap into the wise ways of our bodies. The more we practice finding the platform, the better we’ll be at finding it in moments when we really need it.

So…let’s practice…

Breathing into Awareness Audio File

(I think you need an MP3 to play this, but you can practice mindfulness on your breathing without the audio file if need be: be conscious and aware of the air coming in, the sensation, the lungs expanding and the release and relaxation of the body as you exhale.)

By: Colie Taico, LCSW
UNC Exchanges

Whispered words of wisdom,
Let it be.

~~ John Lennon

Offline Profile  
 Post subject: How to cope with anxiety
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:20 am 
orange you prolific
User avatar

Joined: Sat Feb 26, 2011 5:20 pm
Posts: 3559
Location: SE Michigan
How to Cope with Anxiety, Remember A-W-A-R-E

The key to switching out of an anxiety state is to accept it fully. Remaining in the present and accepting your anxiety cause it to disappear.

*A:* *Accept the anxiety. *Welcome it. Don’t fight it. Replace your rejection, anger, and hatred of it with acceptance. By resisting, you’re prolonging the unpleasantness of it. Instead, flow with it. Don’t make it responsible for how you think, feel, and act.

*W:* *Watch your anxiety.* Look at it without judgment – not good, not bad. Rate it on a 0-to-10 scale and watch it go up and down.* *Be detached. Remember, you’re not your anxiety. The more you can separate yourself from the experience, the* *more you can just watch it.

*A:* *Act with the anxiety.* Act as if you aren’t anxious. Function with it. Slow down if you have to, but keep going. Breathe slowly and normally. If you run from the situation your anxiety will go down, but your fear will go up. If you stay, both your anxiety and your fear will go down.

*R:* * Repeat the steps.* Continue to accept your anxiety, watch it, and act with it until it goes down to a comfortable level. And it will. Just keep repeating these three steps: accept, watch, and act with it.

*E:* *Expect the best. *What you fear the most rarely happens. Recognize that a certain amount of anxiety is normal. By expecting future anxiety you’re putting yourself in a good position to accept it when it comes again.

*Adapted from: Anxiety Disorders and Phobias: A Cognitive Perspective, by Aaron Beck and Gary Emery*



My cats think I'm perfect just the way I am!

Your feelings will not kill you, engaging in disordered behaviors could.

“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”

Offline Profile  
 Post subject: Re: How to cope with anxiety
PostPosted: Mon Nov 11, 2013 11:56 am 
power lies within
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2009 9:00 pm
Posts: 6147
komich wrote:
^ You're welcome you guys! I think I want to put this on an index card and put it in my wallet. Telling myself these things doesn't always work but it seems to sometimes.

That's an excellent idea!

bubbles to the chandelier

Offline Profile  
 Post subject: 10 Tools for Panic Attack Relief
PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 3:42 pm 
admin goddess from hell
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 02, 2008 1:10 am
Posts: 12363
This may be one that we all need to read 'bout now, as we work on letting December be in the past and start living our present now:

10 Tools for Panic Attack Relief
By Jodi Lobozzo Aman
May 2, 2012

1. Have an exit plan. Sometimes knowing we have a plan to leave a situation helps us not be so afraid of trying something new. For example, know you can excuse yourself, you can have your own car to drive home, or you have a friend to support you can make all the difference. We are often scared to get anxiety and not be able to do anything about it. We are afraid of being out of control. Making a plan will make you feel more in control and this counters the anxiety.

2. Have someone you can count on ready to call. In fact, have several, in case the one is busy. Someone who knows about the anxiety and can tell you you are okay, or even better–someone who can make you laugh.

3. Spend time with your pet. (Animal Therapy)

4. Have a tranquilizer with you. Knowing you have antianxiety medication to calm you down within 15 minutes can help you not be afraid of anxiety. Again, we are afraid of being out of control of our anxiety so just knowing you have the medicine is all you need. Panic needs you to be scared of it for it to stay.

5. Interact with water. There is something about water that stops the energy of panic. Sometimes crying releases it (tears). However, consider taking a hot bath or shower for immediate relief. Also drinking hot soup or a hot drink (non-caffinated, please!) can help.

6. Give yourself a massage or have your loved one give you one. This really calms the nerves and calls our attention back out of the anxious mind and into the body.

7. Forward bend. Like a fetal position, any forward bend in yoga counters anxiety. You can get in child’s position.

8. Stare at yourself in the mirror. This is called tratak meditation. It helps build trust in yourself. Do this when you are calm to prevent anxiety and panic. Spender's note: only do this if you have a good relationship with the mirror; don't use the mirror to further trigger yourself; try one of the other tools instead.

9. Go for a walk. Get a change of scenery and use up some of that excess energy. The biology of fear indicates the release of adrenaline makes your body want to do something. Doing something and feeling a sense of control on the account of that activity is by far the best thing you can do for a panic attack.

10. Laugh. Watch some funny videos on YouTube. Laughter and anxiety cannot live in the same moment together!

What did I forget? What’s worked for you?

Anxiety-Schmanxiety Blog

I love laughing as one of my anxiety/urge surfing go-to's. How about you?

Whispered words of wisdom,
Let it be.

~~ John Lennon

Offline Profile  
 Post subject: Re: 10 Tools for Panic Attack Relief
PostPosted: Thu Jan 02, 2014 5:03 am 
orange is a state of mind

Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 4:44 pm
Posts: 2936
Location: Australia
These are good ideas which I'm going to take note of. Except personally for the mirror one, that would increase anxiety but the laughter one does seem the best. I also never knew water was good for anxiety. I knew cold water was good for shock or dissociation but wasn't aware that a hot shower or hot drink was helpful for anxiety.
Thanks for the share.

Offline Profile  
 Post subject: Re: 10 Tools for Panic Attack Relief
PostPosted: Sat Jan 04, 2014 7:15 pm 
post-mod squad

Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2010 5:38 pm
Posts: 3593
Location: Canada
I like all of these except for the mirror one. My "go to" is #5, but if I can't do that I'll either try to find something to laugh at or go for a walk. It's a little too cold here in the winter for me to walk much, so if I do it's because I desperately need it, haha. Thanks for posting these.

Kizzi wrote:
It will always be there, sitting between you and the incredible life that is waiting on the other side. So I guess it's up to you when you want to deal with it, how many years you think is enough of a sacrifice, how much life you are willing to lose.

Offline Profile  
 Post subject: Re: 10 Tools for Panic Attack Relief
PostPosted: Tue Jan 07, 2014 10:17 pm 
stranger in an orange land

Joined: Fri Dec 20, 2013 5:10 am
Posts: 3
Location: SoCal
so glad i read this... it reminded me to stop and think before i let myself get too out of control. At the first feeling of anxiousnes, I went for a long walk and drank some tea and it greatly calmed my nerves before it got bad. Thanks :)

Offline Profile  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 9 posts ]  Moderator: post-mods

All times are UTC - 4 hours

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group
Theme created & kodeki