Tips for combating anxiety

  • 1 Breathe: We underestimate the power of our breath. Close your eyes and put your hand on your stomach, with your mouth closed, and focus your attention on your breathe, take a deep breath in through the nose, feel the breath come in through your nose and visualise the breath going all the way down into your stomach and expands filling up with lovely, fresh energising air as it expands like a balloon. Then visualise the breath as it leaves your stomach and begins to exhale slowly through your nose, extending the outbreath. On the next breath visualise the breath as a golden thread of light filling you up with love and self-compassion and visualise this light moving all around your body. Repeat 3 times.
  • 2 Go to the Now (See, Hear, Smell, Feel): Go outdoors and get in touch with nature. Notice what you can See; Look at the trees, really look at the colours of nature, pay attention to your body as you walk; your feet, your arms, your back, your head, look at the sky like you're looking at it with fresh eyes and seeing it for the first time, the vastness and wonder of the sky, the clouds, the natural world. Feel how amazing it is to be you and acknowledge there is only one incredible you in the world. Notice what you can Hear; sounds of any wildlife, noise from any vehicles, the wind, any chit chat, and just appreciate the world around you as it goes on in its wonderful way. Now notice what you can Smell: the air how does it smell? Maybe someone is cooking nearby?, any nearby flowers or shrubs, how do they smell?, just notice as you take a lovely breath in and out. Now notice how you Feel; do you feel content, at ease, tired, cold, warm, just notice how you feel as you go for your walk and give yourself a warm, loving hug as you affirm your value and the wonderful world around you in the now.
  • 3 Write: Writing down whatever is bothering you really helps get it out of your head and helps rationalise things that are on your mind so you then see it for what it is rather than just churning around in your head. So putting an experience into language we essentially make the experience graspable and in doing so, you free yourself from mentally being tangled in traumas. Writing it down helps you have a conversation with yourself to identify options and ways forward. Studies have shown that the emotional release from journaling lowers anxiety, stress, and induces better sleep. Also writing about what your grateful for and about positive experiences as this allows your brain to relive it and reaffirms your abilities when self-doubt appears. The release of endorphins and dopamine will boost your self-esteem and mood. These reflections can become a catalogue of personal achievements that you continue to go back to, providing encouragement and affirmation.
  • 4 Connect and Affirm: Connect with yourself. I mean really connect with yourself. The most important relationship we can have in life, is the relationship we have with ourselves and this cannot be underestimated. The relationship we have with ourselves dictates the quality of relationships we have with others as projection involves attributing the feelings and thoughts we don’t like in ourselves to those around us instead, without even realising we are doing so. The most important conversations are the ones we have with ourselves. So to improve our relationships and our life in general take time to connect with yourself and accept yourself; warts and all. The best way to do this is: mirror work - make this the norm so whenever you are at a mirror really look at yourself into your eyes and tell yourself things you would tell a dear friend you really cared about - "I'm there for you", "you are incredible and I care for you", "I fully accept you just the way you are", "you have so much potential". The more you do this the easier it will become. By doing this you are not only improving the connection you have with yourself but also the connection you have with everyone else and the world. If you fully love, care and accept yourself you can do so in your relationships so it’s a win win. So see yourself as how you truly are: an amazing, unlimited wonder full of so much potential, look beyond the stories you’ve grown up with as they are only ideas; not truths of who you truly are. Beliefs are just that, they are beliefs, and beliefs and truth are different things. Your not your name, your nationality, your thoughts, your story, your roles, your job… your so much more magnificent than that.

What do you say to yourself? Is it words of encouragement? of respect? of compassion? Of affection? Think about what it's like to be you and what you need? What would you like a best friend to say to you, what words would that friend use?  You will start to gain more clarity on what you need and what will help you. And remember this isn't indulgent, this is a necessity if you want to be authentic, be your true self so you can then truly be there for others without you hiding any part of yourself and you will notice a dramatic improvement in all areas of your life.  Our minds can either be like hell or heaven, subject to our self-talk.  By improving the way we talk to ourselves will allow us to be more accepting of ourselves to enjoy a more successful and fulfilled life that’s authentic.  By showing up as you truly are as your authentic self helps others relax, feel more at ease and your like a permission slip for them then to also be authentic and be their true self.  Start with a few affirmations first thing in the morning; it could be while your brushing your teeth and looking in the mirror. You can say them out loud or in your head - both are just as good.  Looking at yourself in the mirror is most effective so if possible look in the mirror and give yourself words of Compassion, Affection, Respect and Encouragement (CARE :-)).  There are mirrors in lots of places - in public toilets, in your car, in shops, a make up mirror…. You can also of course when there are no mirrors also give yourself the words of CARE anytime.

Please note repetition is key so it really resonates and embeds into your subconscious so when you do feel anxious our self-talk automatically helps keep us calm and settled.

Here are a few CARE self-talk affirmations to connect with yourself and know your value:

  • I am calm and peaceful
  • I am calm and peaceful
  • I am naturally peaceful and joyful
  • I enjoy peace of mind by honouring my own truth
  • I can achieve anything I put my mind to
  • I can be happy and successful in all that I do
  • I have unlimited potential
  • I approve of myself
  • I am creative and courageous
  • I am confident and assertive
  • I am loving and lovable
  • I am truly special and precious
  • I am kind to myself and others
  • I am a walking, talking miracle
  • I am willing to fully accept and love myself
  • I am beautiful, brave and well balanced
  • I am humble, honest and happy
  • I am a worthwhile, lovely, lovable human being
  • I am the most valuable source of love
  • I am enough, I know enough, I do enough

You, I, We

Repeat with adding 'You' then 'I' then 'We' at the start so for example:

You are a walking talking miracle , I am a walking, talking miracle, We are walking, talking miracles

Suggested Recordings:

There are lots of recordings on the web but a few I would recommend are by the Reach Approach noted below:

Positive Affirmations – Part 1

Positive Affirmations comes in two parts; Part 1 is an explanation of the process and Part 2 is the actual journey you’re invited to take. This audio-visual delight will teach you how to make affirmations life-changing. Take this journey again Read More …

Positive Affirmations – Part 2

Positive Affirmations comes in two parts; Part 1 is an explanation of the process and Part 2 is the actual journey you’re invited to take. This audio-visual delight will teach you how to make affirmations life-changing. Take this journey again Read More …

Who Are you Really? - by The Reach Approach

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