Anxiety is the most common psychological condition. The great news is that it is also the most effectively treated.
The cause and the cure for anxiety are: the brain (an organ in your body) and the mind (thoughts which you control.)
Anxiety is natural and not innately bad as it can liberate us to do and be more. Below are 3 tips to help us grow through our fears.
1. Facilitate Optimism. Your fear level is determined not by the situation you find yourself in but by your interpretation of that situation. When your interpretation changes, your whole sense of what is fearful and what is not changes with it. A pessimist can learn to be an optimist. It just takes practice with intention. Human beings are capable of feeling two emotions: Fear and Love. Fear is separation. Love is connection. Those who learn to process as optimists are more likely to take action in response to stressors whereas pessimists may feel defeated and alone making them less likely to choose constructive connection actions.
2. Practice Mindfulness. Present moment, focused awareness or “mindfulness” is an excellent way to process anxiety. It changes emotional reactions, which are often unconscious in to a chosen, controlled, fully conscious response. Suppressing emotions is proven to decrease wellbeing. Mindfulness allows one to feel and validate emotions and then move on. The key is to own the emotion, and then do with it as you will. It is not that you are not afraid. It is that you are willing to feel fear and let it go. You are not fearless, but are willing to be mindful of fear and grow through it. Fear is needed to be courageous.
3. Be the Boss of Your Brain. Avoidance is the primary way most of us deal with anxiety, which is not best practice. As Boss, know fear is simply a problem to be faced and learned from. It is impossible to be relaxed (parasympathetic nervous system) and anxious (sympathetic nervous system) at the same time. So get relaxed, and then consider your fear. You may notice yourself getting tense – that is okay, immediately smile and know that you are removing power from your fear by thinking about it, speaking of it, or doing it while you are in a relaxed state. We remember about 10% of what we read, 20% of what we hear, 80% of what we speak, and 90% of what we do. So, whenever possible use multimodal learning (using as many senses as possible) when replacing your fear with peace. When we take advantage of the opportunity to change and better ourselves, it takes the hurt out of pain.
Conclusion: You are the most significant resource in being successful changing your anxiety. It is not the miracle that makes the believer. It is the believer that makes the miracle. Know that you are the solution. Practice choosing Love over fear with every choice and you are healing.