How To Stop Thinking About Anxiety: Create A Calm Mind Plan
Borrowing from the idea of a Life Stability Plan , you can create a calm mind plan. This is a plan for replacing thoughts about anxiety with positive affirmations for anxiety relief, which bring a sense of contentment.
As you create your plan of thoughts and action, think of who you are at your core, beyond anxiety. What brings you joy? What induces a sense of peace despite anxiety? What are your strengths? Interests? Use what you love to take the necessary action to replace your thoughts about anxiety with thoughts about the good in your life.
Consider the following elements for your calm mind plan:
- What self-care practices can you incorporate into your everyday life?
- What are some positive activities that you enjoy? Make a list and do at least one thing daily.
- How can you cultivate a sense of awe, an appreciation for something greater, something beautiful that captures your attention and thoughts? Examples include stargazing, water , art, music, and much more. Awe clears away inner turmoil with a wave of outer immensity .
- Get outside. Nature calms mind and body and reduces stress. Both soothing and invigorating, nature shifts our thoughts away from anxiety.
Self-care, being a distant observer of your thoughts, and creating a calm mind plan are intentional actions that enhance each other. Together, they comprise an effective plan for how to stop thinking about your anxiety.
Tip : Practice Mindfulness
Worrying is usually focused on the futureon what might happen and what youll do about itor on the past, rehashing the things youve said or done. The centuries-old practice of mindfulness can help you break free of your worries by bringing your attention back to the present. This strategy is based on observing your worries and then letting them go, helping you identify where your thinking is causing problems and getting in touch with your emotions.
Acknowledge and observe your worries. Dont try to ignore, fight, or control them like you usually would. Instead, simply observe them as if from an outsiders perspective, without reacting or judging.
Let your worries go. Notice that when you dont try to control the anxious thoughts that pop up, they soon pass, like clouds moving across the sky. Its only when you engage your worries that you get stuck.
Stay focused on the present. Pay attention to the way your body feels, the rhythm of your breathing, your ever-changing emotions, and the thoughts that drift across your mind. If you find yourself getting stuck on a particular thought, bring your attention back to the present moment.
Basic mindfulness meditation
Click here for a free mindful breathing meditation.
Ways To Prevent Panic Attacks
“You need to try to work out what particular stress you might be under that could make your symptoms worse,” says Professor Salkovskis. “It’s important not to restrict your movements and daily activities.”
- Doing breathing exercises every day will help to prevent panic attacks and relieve them when they are happening
- Regular exercise, especially aerobic exercise, will help you to manage stress levels, release tension, improve your mood and boost confidence
- Eat regular meals to stabilise your blood sugar levels
- Avoid caffeine, alcohol and smoking these can make panic attacks worse. Panic support groups have useful advice about how you can effectively manage your attacks. Knowing that other people are experiencing the same feelings can be reassuring. Your GP can put you in touch with groups in your area
- Cognitive behavioural therapy can identify and change the negative thought patterns that are feeding your panic attacks
Read Also: Is Online School Good For Social Anxiety
Distance Yourself From Your Anxious Thoughts
Since spirals are not reflective of healthy thought-patterns, getting them at arms length ASAP will enable you to see them more objectively.
Dr. Buchholz suggests writing them down, vocalizing them to someone or even just speaking them out loud to the empty air around your face. Externalizing them will allow you to observe them rather than experience them.
Counter-intuitive realization of the day: you need distance to see things more clearly.
What Do Fear And Anxiety Feel Like
When you feel frightened or seriously anxious, your mind and body work very quickly. These are some of the things that might happen:
- Your heart beats very fast maybe it feels irregular
- You breathe very fast
- You have hot and cold sweats
- You get a dry mouth
- You get very tense muscles
These things occur because your body, sensing fear, is preparing you for an emergency, so it makes your blood flow to the muscles, increases blood sugar, and gives you the mental ability to focus on the thing that your body perceives as a threat.
With anxiety, in the longer term, you may have some of the above symptoms as well as a more nagging sense of fear, and you may get irritable, have trouble sleeping, develop headaches, or have trouble getting on with work and planning for the future you might have problems having sex, and might lose self-confidence.
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Take Any Prescribed Medications
Depending on the severity of panic attacks, a doctor may prescribe a use-as-needed medication. These medications typically work fast.
However, these drugs can be highly addictive, so people should use them exactly as their doctor prescribes. Taken with opioids or alcohol, they can have life threatening adverse effects.
A doctor may also describe selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, which can help prevent panic attacks from occurring in the first place.
People With Social Anxiety Don’t Want To Be Alone
7. Take a breath. The physical symptoms of anxiety include increased heart rate, pounding chest, dizziness, and muscle tension. Learning to take a minute and slow down your breath can help you take back control of your body.
Simply take a seat, get comfortable, and take the biggest breath youve taken all day and hold it in for four seconds. Then exhale slowly, pushing out as much air as possible. Take another deep breath filling the stomach with air and continue until you feel your breath slowing down to its normal rate.
8. Act confidently. There are a large number of adults suffering from social phobia and crippling shyness. You can learn to be confident in the same way you learned to ride a bike. Act more confidently, and people will react positively.
9. Find social situations and engage. Make a conscious effort to be more social. Actively look for supportive social environments that can help you overcome your fears. Perhaps start with a social skills training class. Here you can properly practice your social interactions before heading out into the real world. This will give you some tips on what to say and do when you find yourself in a social situation youre unfamiliar with or anxious about.
Also Check: What Medications Work For Anxiety
Ways To Deal With Anxiety
Everyone has feelings of anxiety, nervousness, tension, and stress from time to time. Here are 5 ways to help manage them:
Shaking And Social Anxiety
People with social anxiety are the most likely to start shaking when confronted with triggering situations. While its possible to start shaking when youre alone and start feeling anxious, this phenomenon is far more common when youre surrounded by staring eyes.
Social anxiety has a tendency to get worse as you become aware of its symptoms. For instance, you might notice that youre starting to shake and begin shaking even worse at that realization. Hiding the symptoms of your anxiety or attempting to pretend that you arent anxious can make your symptoms worse, but there are plenty of effective methods you can use to combat social anxiety and anxious shaking.
Read Also: How To Relieve Anxiety To Sleep
Tip #: Focus On Quality Over Quantity
One of the many reasons we tend to get burnt out with work is that we fail to prioritize quality over quantity.
In a typical work session, how long do you actually spend working? When you take away the social media check-ins, the quick scan of your email inbox, and the pointless web browsing, how much time do you spend in a state of deep focus?
My guess is that most of you reading this would say that your work sessions are characterized by frequent interruption.
Theres two key reasons why this is so detrimental to your lifestyle:
- First off, you dont produce your best work. The work that you produce during work sessions where youre constantly jumping around with split-focus is less likely to be high-quality work.
- Second, overextending yourself becomes a necessity. When things take longer than they should, youre constantly having to make up for lost time.
When you lack the ability to focus, youre forced to play catch up. You put yourself in a position where you need to work longer hours because your lack of efficiency is bottlenecking your productivity.
This leaves less time for you to engage in activities that get your mind off work watching your favorite shows, hanging out with friends, enjoying your favorite hobbies, etc.
The solution to feeling overextended isnt necessarily about working less, its about using the time you do have in a more productive way. And the easiest way to do that is to master the ability to focus intensely on a singular task.
How To Calm Your Anxiety Fast:
When you need to stave off an anxiety attack or pull yourself out of spiraling thoughts, you need immediate interventions. Sometimes, our worries can intrude on our everyday tasks and can take us out of the present moment, de la Rosa explains. When that happens, these techniques can help break the cycle.
Categorize Your Thoughts
Another technique Goldman likes is listing objects in a category say, 80s bands, ice cream flavors or any topic that gets your brain whirring. The more you enjoy the category, the more it will help shift the anxiety and distract from the triggering situation, she says. Because you can do it anywhere, this technique works well for anxiety that strikes in public or when you cant physically remove yourself from a situation.
Get Rid of an Anxious Feeling By Replacing It
If youve ever found yourself hysterically laughing after an intense crying jag, you know the healing powers of a good chuckle. Switch on an absorbing podcast, crack open a spine-tingling thriller, or hit play on a gut-busting YouTube video to swap out anxious thoughts for more pleasant ones. When we genuinely laugh, we will feel less anxious, even if just for a moment, says Goldman. Sometimes, even a brief hit of levity can stop anxiety from carrying you away. The same principle applies when redirecting your emotional energy into something that really captures your attention, whether its comedy or true crime.
Walk It Out
Use Cold Water to Calm Yourself Now
Read Also: How To Stop An Anxiety Spiral
Aromatherapy And Essential Oils
Essential oils, the extract from plants, have been used for thousands of years to treat a number of conditions, including anxiety. Essential oils activate certain areas of your brain and release feel-good chemicals such as serotonin. They have been found to ease symptoms of anxiety, stress, and depression, improve mood, and improve sleep.
Recommended use includes diffusing, inhalation, or topical treatment which can aid with anxiety symptoms. When diffusing an essential oil or essential oil blend you will need an essential oil diffuser to fill your space with the desired scent. Inhalation is used by deeply smelling the essential oil straight from the bottle or by applying a drop or two of the oil on something such as a diffuser pad or lava bead that is connected to a bracelet, necklace, or even keychain. You can also place a drop or two of essential oil into your hands, rub them together, then cup your hands and take a few deep inhalations to get the desired effect.
You should be sure that the essential oils you use are pure oils and not mixed with chemicals. Some good brands to use include: Mountain Rose Herbs, Plant Therapy, Young Living, Doterra. You can do your own research to find a brand that will best work for you and your budget. Remember that a bottle of essential oil will last a long time since you typically use only a few drops at a time.
Essential oils that are great for treating anxiety include:
Practice Mindfulness Meditation And Relaxation
Mindfulness meditation, relaxation, and breathing exercises can help calm your mind and body, which may allow you to feel less worried. Plus, it only takes a few minutes each day to feel a difference. Use this time to be aware of whats going on in your mind and body. Start with five minutes a day and work your way up to mindful moments several times a day.
To help you get started, listen to a guided meditation, or recorded breathing exercises. Once you feel comfortable with the practice, you will find more focus and awareness throughout the day.