5 steps towards becoming a less anxious version of yourself
In this article, I'll share five steps you can take to feel less anxious.
1. You don't have to visualise all five steps
Remember you don't have to see the whole staircase of five steps, just one at a time. In other words, focusing on the here and now and whatever is going on in this moment, in this breath, will help you to have a mindful approach rather than a mind that is full of stuff from the past, e.g 'If only that hadn't happened" and stuff from the future e.g, "what if this happens, then I will not be able to cope".
2. Anxiety is a fear-based response
Remember there is no such thing as fear itself, only fearful thoughts. So imagine where you would be without those fearful thoughts. Remember you control your thoughts, no one else, even though it might not seem as if you currently control them very well. If it feels as if your thoughts are running away with you, gently escort them back to the here and now with your breathing. Make sure you breathe from your belly area for best effect - expand your belly as you breathe in and allow it to naturally deflate as you breathe out. Simply taking just five or six diaphragmatic breaths from your belly area when you are feeling anxious can make all the difference.
3. Write down your concerns
Start with "I feel..." and then add the emotion, e.g. "I feel anxious that...", "I feel, worried that...", "I feel scared that...", "I feel upset that..." etc. Remember your feelings are not facts, they are simply your perception of the facts, so it is OK to remind yourself as you are journaling this shall pass. Journaling is a highly effective tool in offloading your anxious thoughts and feelings. Once you have written them down, you can even shred them or tear them up so you can focus on something more fun and rewarding.
4. Have a toolbox
Have a toolbox of ways that help you return to a feeling of rest and repair, particularly if you recognise you are feeling as if you are in a high-alert state of fight, flight, freeze, or fawn. This could be by getting out in nature, playing some soothing music, meditation, a hot bath, lighting a candle, doing a craft, playing a sport, or anything else that you find calming or a release.
5. Get professional support
There is no shame in telling someone you are not coping. A cognitive hypnotherapist will be able to support you regulate your nervous system and teach you to control your thoughts better. Just because you consider yourself to be an anxious, worried type now does not mean you have to stay that way. Imagine how you ideally would like to be thinking, feeling, and behaving. A cognitive hypnotherapist will, by suggestion, be able to guide you to visualise all of those changes actually taking place and those very changes will begin to show up in your life after just a few short sessions, and change is good thing, is that not so?
If you'd like to work with a hypnotherapist to manage your anxiety, you're welcome to reach out to me via my profile.