For most people, learning how to manage anxiety and stress is a lifelong pursuit. The saying, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” isn’t always entirely accurate. It mostly comes down to how you manage your anxiety and stress that’ll determine whether it makes you stronger or just breaks you down.
It would be unrealistic to expect to go through tough times in life and not experience some measure of anxiety. Stress can be healthy to a certain extent. It pushes you out of your comfort zone and helps you to succeed.
But, in excess, stress and anxiety can wreak havoc on your quality of life, stifle your productivity and leave you afraid to step outside of your home or gather in social settings.
Just how do you manage anxiety and stress when the going gets tough? Here are some things to try.
Change What You Can and Let Go of What You Can’t
If you’re able to, try and better understand what makes you feel so stressed out. Just taking this initial step will likely bring some relief. Is it your family, employment, financial worries, relationship or school anxiety, for instance? Once you identify the culprit (or culprits), find ways to improve things.
Decide what you can change and what you can’t. If you’re able to get out of a stressful life circumstance, do so. That could mean relocating away from toxic family members, finding less stressful work or getting out of an abusive relationship.
On the other hand, some stressors and anxiety triggers can’t be avoided. Examples would include the loss of a loved one, a breakup or being unable to change schools. In these cases, you’ll need to find some ways to cope better with the stress. A good starting point is taking better care of yourself.
How to Manage Anxiety and Stress: Take Good Care of Your Body
When your basic needs aren’t being met well, it makes everything in life feel worse. For that reason, it’s important to get plenty of sleep, eat healthily and regularly exercise. It can’t be emphasized enough how important these things are in the journey to overcoming anxiety and stress.
Evaluate what’s standing in the way of taking care of your basic needs. Next, find ways to eliminate the barriers that keep you from making your most basic, foundational needs a top priority.
Some Additional Relief from Your Anxiety and Stress
Summing things up, if you’d like a quick “cheat sheet” for ways to eliminate anxiety, the Anxiety and Depression Association of America provides an infographic with 14 quick steps you can take.
And always remember that it takes courage to seek out help if you can’t manage your anxiety or stress on your own. We all go through tough times in life when we need help.
Valencia Relationship Institute can provide you with evidence-based methods of how to manage your anxiety and stress. Our team can also help you talk out your anxiety and to replace the inaccurate script of your internal dialogue with one that is compassionate and beneficial. You can reach out to us today and schedule an appointment at our Valencia, CA counseling office.