Coping With Anxiety

Anxiety, huh! What a little bitch.

Unfortunately as I've scrolled through social media recently, I've noticed far too many people talking about their struggles with anxiety. I mean, it's a good thing that people are talking about it, but it's unfortunate that anyone has to experience it in the first place. Anxiety has been a massive issue for myself over the past couple of months, so much so that I've registered myself onto a waiting list for therapy.
I'm putting this blog post together to share some of my no-bullshit tips for fighting against anxiety on the daily. Of course there are the standard tips like indulging in self-care, taking alone time for yourself... but I wanted to focus on the tips that help me to go out of the house and get on with life in the best way possible.
If you're getting overwhelmed with anxiety to the point where it's seriously affecting your life, I urge you to register to talk to a professional. You can either go through your doctor, or you can find help through a company like Mind.

Talk to someone
 First and foremost let me just say; I don't care if we've never talked before, If you ever feel like you need to talk and don't know where to turn to, please know that my DMs/messages are always open. I am always here to listen, I know first hand how shitty anxiety can be. However, if you want things to be totally anonymous, I cannot recommend the live chat website 7cups enough. It has been an absolute god send. It's a totally free service, where trained 'listeners' are online 24/7 to talk to you about absolutely anything. I'm looking at my profile screen on there right now! I've started up 44 different conversations on there with 44 separate listeners and I've never been disappointed. I've never found anyone rude or judgemental, just a whole heap of kind, caring people. Please give it a go.
Having someone on hand to talk to is also handy for going about your day, you know that they're right there in your phone should you need them.

Breathing exersices

I was sceptical about this one at first. Last thing I want to do when I'm really anxious is focus on deep breathing. It always seemed a waste of time. Please give this one a go when you're feeling bad, it's helped me so, so much.

- Breathe in for 4 seconds
- Hold breath for 7 seconds
- Exhale for 8 seconds

That simple. Repeat it a couple of times and I promise you'll start to feel a lot lighter. Plus another bonus that this can be done wherever you are without anyone knowing what you're doing.

Calm app

I find that when I'm having a tough time with anxiety, I don't sleep very well. I find it hard to fall asleep and most times I wake up around 3am for no reason whatsoever. Just feeling panicked. However recently I've found an app that really helps me to unwind and clear my head before sleep, and I haven't really experienced waking in the night anymore. The app is called 'Calm' it's a free app. There are in app purchases but I've never needed to spend any money. There are a bunch of different settings for Calm, and the music can be played when the app is closed. I usually turn on the 'Thunderstorm' option and lock my phone. I lay in complete darkness and just listen to the rain. I truly believe that this app, combined with the effort to look at 'no screens' just before bed, is the reason that I can get a decent night sleep now.

Think it through

This is a coping strategy that I'm pretty new to, but it has made a massive difference in calming me down.

- Write down all of the reasons that you're stressed out/what's getting to you. You can either; write a list down on paper, write the list in your phone's notes or in a blank text message, or you can visualise the list in your head if you're unable to write it down.
- Go through each point individually and write down one reason why you don't need to be worried/stressed about it.
- Write down the worst and best case scenarios for each individual point, and ask yourself if being worried/stressed is really helpful to you right now.
- Keep the list as a reminder to yourself while you're calming down. Destroy list when you're feeling less anxious.

Sounds like a lot of work but trust me, this really helps when you're having a bad day.

Helpful places online to visit to find like-minded people and advice

Again as a final message, please feel free to message me if you ever need someone to talk to. I'm always here.

Gemma x

1 comment

  1. I will have to check out those links as I'm always looking for anxiety related websites like that! I hadn't heard of before, I may have to have a little look into it!
    I completely agree with you, it's unfortunate that people have to experience anxiety in the first place, but people sharing their stories and listening to others is great to break the ice/stigma!

    Claire xxx