Anxiety Fighting Tips

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When caught in the grips of anxiety, it is nearly impossible to think clearly and rationally, given that your brain is operating in pure survival mode.  Therefore, I encourage my clients to come up with a short list of anxiety fighting mantras, that they can quickly access, when in the midst of a panic attack.  Here are a few sample, anxiety fighting tips, that my fabulous clients have come up with:

  • When in doubt, move TOWARDS the discomfort. Avoidance feels good in the short term but only leads to more long term distress.
  • Just because my anxious brain says "I can't do this" does not make it true.
  • When all else fails, just keep putting one foot in front of the other. When in a deep, dark, overwhelming place, all I need to do is force myself to take the next tiny baby step forward.
  • A panic attack is a false alarm.  I AM SAFE AND SOUND AND WILL BE OK.  
  • I can handle this.
  • When feeling overwhelmed and unclear what do next, I will force myself to pick a next step and take action in the face of uncertainty. I don't need to make a "perfect" choice to move forward.
  • Anxiety, like all emotions, will soon pass, making way for the next.
  • If I am feeling anxious about something, I am probably doing something important.  If I did not care about the task, I would not be feeling anxious, I would be feeling indifferent.  
  • Anxiety is uncomfortable but it is not dangerous.
  • When anxiety shows up, I am going to remind myself, "I may not like this but I can handle this. I am allowing myself to feel this anxiety in the service of living my life to its fullest".
  • When in doubt, moves towards the discomfort. Freedom from anxiety does not mean living a life free of anxiety but instead living a full and meaningful life, and taking anxiety along for the ride, when it rears its annoying (but not dangerous) head.