• Clare O'Brien

TIPS FOR ANXIETY MANAGEMENT


Quick tips for handling anxiety
Quick tips for handling anxiety

Anxiety is normal. We all experience it at some point in our lives.


What is anxiety?


Anxiety is a feeling of worry, feeling nervous an unease, a feeling of fear of what is to come. These feelings can range from mild to severe.


Anxiety can affect us in three different ways:

· Physical body changes

· The way we think

· The way we behave


Physical Body Changes


This can often be the first sign that we are feeling anxious. They include:


· Palpitations

· Dry mouth

· Butterflies in the stomach

· Breathlessness

· Headaches

· Dizziness

· Visual disturbance e.g. blurring

· Pins and needles

· Shaking

· An urge to go to the toilet


The way we think


· We think people are looking at us

· We worry we may lose control

· We think we are having a heart attack

· We are convinced we are physically ill or losing our mind

· We think we will make a fool or ourselves

· We think we have to escape to a safe place


The way we behave


This all depends on the source of the anxiety:


· We may cross the road to avoid people

· Stop answering the telephone and/or front door

· Stop opening the mail

· Make excuses to avoid going places or doing things

· Stop going shopping, or to college, or work

· Avoid going out alone, by always making sure someone is with us

· We may use “props” such as a drink of alcohol, cigarettes, or take tablets before doing something we find anxiety provoking

· We may find it difficult to sleep


Tips to help with anxiety


· Remember anxiety is normal

· Do not add frightening thoughts, tell yourself you will be okay and this will pass

· Stop what you’re doing, if possible sit down

· Learn some breathing techniques, these will help calm you

· Distract yourself, maybe describe your surroundings

· Plan what you are going to do next in the situation you are in

· Moves slowly, do not panic. If you rush around the house, office, supermarket etc. this will add to the sense of fear

· When you feel anxious try to continue with your original plan

· In the long-term consider your lifestyle including eating, sleeping and exercise

· Consider mindfulness and meditation. Youtube is a great resource for this

· Make time for fun

· If the symptoms persist visit your GP


Remember you’re not alone. Talking to someone can help, this doesn’t have to be a professional family and friends can be a great place to start.

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