Nataliya 33 Writer And Digital Content Consultant
“Before I was diagnosed with a generalised anxiety and panic disorders a decade ago, I genuinely believed everyone woke up with a sinking feeling in the pit of their stomach every day. I’d heard people speak of anxiety, so I thought it was normal, but now I know that being anxious and having an anxiety disorder that requires medical attention aren’t the same thing. Anxiety is a normal feeling in the body, like happiness, sadness, or jealousy. There’s a big distinction between anxiety and anxiety disorders.
“I genuinely believed everyone woke up with a sinking feeling in the pit of their stomach every day”
My anxiety was especially bad in the morning because I struggled to deal with the day ahead. Waking up meant I had to organise my day to ensure I didn’t miss anything or say anything that would make me ruminate all night. I went through the tasks in my head over and over. If I was doing something new or unusual that day, I’d wake up too early with anxiety. Everything new spelled fear, especially when it centered around people or expectations I had to fulfil. Talking on the phone felt awful and socialising was a huge task.
Nataliya is the founder of Styletomes.com.
Morning Anxiety Causes: Why You Feel Them And What To Do
If youve ever wondered about the cause of your morning anxiety, youre definitely not alone. I had only guessed at the reasons I feel anxious when I get up in the wee hours of the morning. But recently, someone asked me for insight into why she feels anxious in the morning going to her workouts. I did a little digging and I want to share some factors that may cause morning anxiety.
How To Tell Whether You Have Morning Anxiety
Maybe you wake up feeling extremely on edge and your chest is tight. Or perhaps your mind is racing and your stomach hurts before youve even gotten out of bed. People experience anxiety in a lot of different ways, explains David H. Rosmarin, assistant professor in the department of psychiatry at Harvard and founder and director of the Center for Anxiety in New York. There are cognitive symptoms of anxiety, like excessive worry, difficulty concentrating, and racing thoughts. There are also physical symptoms, like chest tightness, heart palpitations, constricted breathing, sweating, nausea, and shakiness. If you experience a combination of both mental and physical symptoms in the a.m., you likely have morning anxiety.
Anxiety isn’t the same as run-of-the-mill stress, which is what a lot of folks experience as they get ready for a busy day ahead. Stress occurs when we don’t have enough resources to deal with the demands of our day, explains Rosmarin. Say, for example, you have a work presentation due in four hours, but you estimate it will take you at least six hours to finish it. Or you have to pay a $500 bill, but you have only $300. Those scenarios would trigger stress.
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Reduce Your Daily Stresses
Your next step will be a little more complicated, but no less important. You’ll need to make sure that you’re looking forward to every day, and not experiencing a great deal of stress. Morning anxiety is directly related to the amount you’re looking forward to your day. When your day is stressful, your anxiety increases as a result.
So what can you do? That depends on what’s causing you the stress. For example:
- Making Work Fun If work is what is causing you so much stress, then you need to make sure you’re looking for more ways to enjoy your work. You may work at one of the worst places in the world, but there are almost always ways that you can improve the quality or enjoyment of your work if you do it right. Try to make work more fun, and the stress you experience will decrease.
- Getting Out There Maybe you’re stressed because you don’t feel as though you’re doing enough or having enough fun. That means that your next step is to make the changes you need to address that. Join clubs, spend more time with your friends – what you do depends on what you enjoy, but getting out there and enjoying life is the obvious solution.
- Relationship Troubles Those with relationship issues should be making sure they’re addressing them as well. Sitting around and hoping things will change is not realistic. If you’re so stressed during the day that you’re waking up with anxiety, then you need to make changes right away if you want your morning anxiety to go away.
Youre Looking At Your Phone
Many of us have our alarms on our phones, so when you wake up, you inevitably start looking at emails or what else you have on your plate for the day. So whats the downside of checking your phone first thing in the AM? The thoughts of what needs to be accomplished that day can feel overwhelming and we begin to start creating to-do lists in our heads,business coach Ajit Nawalkha told Bustle. You could try an old-school alarm clock to help you put off looking at your phone for a little bit in the morning. Or practice extreme willpower and dont click on any messages or apps that will deliver news to you.
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Get Up And Get Moving
Whether its a brisk morning walk or a visit to your local gym, physical activity is one of the best ways to lift your mood in the morning. If you find yourself dealing with an excessive amount of worry in those early hours, try to exercise at least five days a week for about 30 minutes each session.
You Have Higher Amounts Of Stress Hormones In The Morning
“There’s actually a physiological reason why some people experience anxiety in the mornings,” Dr. Saltz says. “For one, it’s when cortisol levels are naturally at their highest.” She explains that cortisol is often called “the stress hormone” because high levels of it can lead to feeling stressed.
“There’s nothing you can do from stopping cortisol from raising slightly in the morningthat’s biologically what happensbut there are steps you can take to lower your cortisol overall so that it doesn’t peak as high,” Dr. Saltz says.
2. Coffee can lead to feeling anxious.
What you eat or drink in the morning can also lead to increased feelings of anxiety, according to Dr. Saltz. “The first thing many people do in the morning is drink a cup of coffee. Caffeine, particularly for people who already have anxiety, can definitely worsen the symptoms of that.” She explains that caffeine can lead to feeling jittery and having an increased heart rate. “Then our brain tries to come up with a reason to explain why we feel that way: I’m feeling jittery. I must be worried about X.” Dr. Saltz says this happens so quickly that it can feel like we have the thought first and then the physiological reaction, but it’s actually the other way around.
3. Sugar is another culprit.
4. Morning anxiety could also be a sign of having general anxiety disorder.
5. You’re chronically stressed.
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How To Break The Morning Anxiety Cycle
Avoiding morning anxiety can be done, but it requires some focus on your part particularly with regards to your habits.
One of the first things you can do is begin to limit your exposure to early morning stressors right after you wake up.
Jumping right into emails from your boss, social media or just reading the news and watching news TV may be causing you stress and anxiety first thing in the morning.
When you condition your body to expect that, it leads to expectations .
Instead, consider replacing these activities with exercise or meditation, which can break the habit loop and offer mental focus and endorphins to replace those cortisol spikes. These things can also elevate your mood.
You can also try decreasing your morning anxiety by preparing for it the night before. Look at whats planned for the next day before bed, and address the things that cause you concern the night before, so that you wake up prepared and in control.
There are resources for all of these things, including podcasts, meditation and breathing apps, exercise trackers and even to-do lists that may help you organize your morning anxiety coping system.
You might also consider talking to a healthcare professional about online counseling and medication options.
Treatments For Morning Anxiety
Accessing therapy is very beneficial for treating the underlying causes of anxiety, identifying ways to cope with anxiety, and adjusting your lifestyle to allow for more tranquility and peace. Choosing a therapist is a daunting task, but an online directory is a great place to start looking.
Your therapist may use a range of approachescognitive behavioral therapy, exposure therapy, trauma-informed practice, and other techniquesto help you effectively deal with your anxiety. They may also recommend lifestyle changes like focusing on nutrition, exercise, sleep, and self-care like yoga, meditation, and relaxation activities to help keep your anxiety at manageable levels and to also help you cope better with anxiety and stressful situations when they do occur.
Additionally, your doctor or a psychiatrist can prescribe anti-anxiety medication that may lead to a reduction of your anxiety symptoms.
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Reflect On What Youre Looking Forward To
During an anxiety peak, it may be difficult to think about anything other than feeling anxious or stressed. However, it can also be helpful to think about something youre looking forward to time with your child or partner, meeting up with a friend for a walk, or devoting time to a hobby of yours. In thinking this way, you give anxiety less of a hold over your life and you get to take front and center on the stage.
Morning Anxiety Guide: Causes Symptoms & Tips To Stop
Today will be the last day you wake up with anxiety in the morning!
Because, today you will get to know everything you need to kick morning anxietys butt.
This is the most comprehensive guide on the causes of morning anxiety and how to deal with it.
Lets get started!
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Recommended Reading: How To Calm Anxiety In The Moment
Negative Thoughts Are Circling Your Brain
One of the major tools of Julie Camerons The Artists Way is the Morning Pages. If youre unfamiliar, Cameron says you should write three handwritten pages every morning when you first wake up that will help your creativity later in the day. These Morning Pages are written in stream of consciousness and Cameron says, Youre becoming acquainted with all the dark corners of your psyche. If you find that your brain is full of negative thoughts when you wake up, they could be whats causing your anxiety. So even if you arent a creative or self-help type of person, they might be worth a try. Many people swear by Morning Pages and Cameron says, What I find is that when you put the negativity on the page, it isnt eddying through your consciousness during the day.
Reshape Your Brain Conditioning
Be sure that your subconscious mind will absorb all of the hidden affirmations. According to world-famous researchers, the unconscious processes 40 million bits of information every second! On the other hand, consciousness processes only 40 bits of information. In other words, the subconscious mind is a million times stronger than your consciousness!
Now imagine that throughout the night you will be exposed to tens of thousands of repeated hidden affirmations that are specially designed to beat morning depression, without any internal resistance whatsoever.
What do you believe is going to happen? Thats right! Youll start creating new neural pathways. This method has been explored in many studies and has been found to be an efficient means of decreasing depression, anxiety, and various addictions such as alcohol and food, and helping with other areas of life.
I recorded it using multi-layers a unique formula that has changed the lives of thousands of people worldwide! They will do the same for you.
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Start The Day With A Laugh
“Sometimes it also helps to start your day off with laughter,” says Hallett. “We know that laughter gives us dopamine, which helps us feel better. So instead of reviewing your schedule or work emails when you first get up, consider watching a funny YouTube video or something else that makes you laugh.”
Early Serious Mental Illness Treatment Locator
Individuals who experience a first onset of serious mental illness – which can include a first episode of psychosis – may experience symptoms that include problems in perception , thinking , mood, and social functioning. There are effective treatments available and the earlier that an individual receives treatment, the greater likelihood that these treatments can lead to better outcomes and enable people to live full and productive lives with their family and friends.
States requesting treatment facilities information to be placed on the ESMI Treatment Locator should submit their request to .
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Do You Find Yourself Wide
Early morning anxiety is an extremely common form of anxiety that leaves most of us wide awake in the early hours of the morning, struggling to switch off and get back to sleep. In this blog, I discuss why this phenomenon occurs and what you can do to combat this unwanted wake-up call.
Why me? Why you?What to do and not do?Early morning anxiety seems to be a sadly common phenomenon, given the questions I receive, personal experience of family and friends and the amount of internet searches with this title.It is not easy to explain why it happens since there seem to be many contributing factors but listed below are some possible reasons and tips which may help:Generally when people wake with early morning panic, they have already been experiencing stress and anxiety throughout the day.
On waking, the body tenses and jumps into fight or flight at the memory and thought of another stress filled day ahead. Thus a bout of negative thinking ensues before the day has even begun and a repeating cycle of early morning dread is created.Added to this, the latter part of the night and early part of the morning generally sees an increase in blood pressure and cortisol levels as the body prepares to start another day. This can give rise to the buzzy feeling that can course through the body.If we are already stressed then we are likely to be experiencing poor and often interrupted sleep which exacerbates this issue.