A wise man named once said, Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strength. -Charles Spurgeon.
In today’s society which requires us to live in a constant state of arousal and stress, it’s no wonder we experience an anxiety epidemic worldwide. Whether it’s a job that requires your utmost attention for 8 consecutive hours, the loud, disturbing noise from the streets or the worldwide atrocities we constantly hear about.
It’s a continuous, enchanted cycle that never stops. By the time we get a chance to relax and unwind, the next day has arrived. So, we get up and do it all over again. The awful truth is, we live in very stressful times, and the valid indicator for this is the fact that anxiety and depression are the most prevalent mental illnesses in the world.
However, even though sometimes it seems like the whole world is against us, there are certain things we can do in order to overcome anxiety and relieve our minds from stress:
Here are 4 common causes of anxiety and how to overcome them:
1. FOCUSING ON THE POSSIBLY WORST OUTCOME TO ANY GIVEN SITUATION
People struggling with anxiety tend to obsess their minds with thinking of the possibly worst outcome to a certain situation. They believe that way, they can prepare themselves if the event really occurs. However, even though an extremely precautious behavior might help you avoid trouble, it won’t spare your mind from suffering.
Mental health expert Alicia Boyes says, “I use suddenly feeling overwhelmed as a cue to hunt for thinking errors. If ever feel overwhelmed by an email, I tell myself, ‘There’s a ninety percent chance my reaction is just my good old anxiety brain, and that the request will seem easy when I look at it with fresh eyes tomorrow.’ I’ve had enough experiences of this alternative thought being true, to believe it!”
2. BEING AFRAID OF CRITICISM
Anxiety disorder has the power to mess up a person’s confidence. Therefore, people with anxiety, especially social anxiety are afraid of what others might say about them. They are terrified when faced with criticism, even if it’s constructive.
This is why most of them are either people-pleasers or take extreme measures to avoid contact with people who might unintentionally make them feel weak and miserable.
Alicia says “If the occasional reaction or feedback I get is negative, it’s not the end of the world and is typically something I can learn from. I also remind myself that when something I’ve done wrong is pointed out, it’s usually fixable rather than a catastrophe.”
In other words, they second-guess themselves. The constant fear of other people’s judgment makes them feel hopeless enough to start overanalyzing their actions. “What’s wrong with me?”; “Why did I say that?”; “I shouldn’t have done that!”. Self-doubt can obliterate a person’s mind.
To the one reading this article, remember: You need to accept all of your quirks and flaws and start loving yourself. Do everything in your power to achieve something, but even if you don’t, don’t be so hard on yourself. You did your best. Believe in yourself and just keep moving forward.
4. ANALYSIS PARALYSIS
People with anxiety also tend to overanalyze and overthink every action they could take and the possible outcomes from it, without ever making a final decision. They sit and struggle with their thoughts which only paralyzes them from actually doing something. This behavior can lead to a lot of missed opportunities, and therefore an increase in self-doubt.
You can help yourself, by organizing your tasks. Write down all of the options you have for the certain issue and classify them by writing the pros and the cons for each. Once you have the winner, get up and take matters into your own hands!
Image: Kevin Puertas