Everyone Experiences Anxiety

Vicki Silverthorne's picture

Reducing AnxietyEveryone experiences anxiety from time to time. It’s normal to get symptoms like butterflies, heart palpitations or shortness of breath. Our bodies have a built in fight, flight, or freeze response to danger.

A certain amount of anxiety can be helpful, motivating us to solve problems, accomplish things, or avoid danger. However, when your overwhelming fears keep you from living your everyday life the way you would like to, you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder.

Do your thoughts seem to be running like a hamster on a wheel continually? Does it feel impossible to escape them?

Do you experience physical symptoms such as:

  • A pounding heart
  • Stomach upsets
  • Muscle tension
  • Sweating
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Insomnia

Addressing the thoughts and physical symptoms can actually help to diminish your anxiety. It takes time and practice but with help, you can change the way you respond to your fears. Learning some relaxation techniques can be really effective to slow down panic and anxiety symptoms.

Try these exercises:

  1. Breathe deeply and slowly. Inhale slowly till the count of five. Imagine your lungs filling up with air all the way to the bottom. Hold. Then exhale slowly till the count of five. Do this three or four times and your anxious thoughts should slow down.
  2. Try focusing on a familiar object. Something as simple as your keys. Describe them in your mind. The shape, the color, the feel- are they cold? Warm? This simple activity will slow your brain down because it can’t focus on anxious thoughts and the keys at the same time.

Also you might want to take a look at this power point presentation for some more practical suggestions on addressing your anxiety.