Navigating Anxiety and Stress in a Busy and Uncertain Time
Chances are, you’ve experienced stress and anxiety before. We all go through rough patches where our emotions seem to be particularly out of whack. Maybe you lost your job, recently brought a child into the world, or you got into a fight with your spouse. Stress is generally characterized by these types of external triggers and is normally more of a short-term feeling. Anxiety, on the other hand, is a persistent monster that loves to pop up without any specific outside factors. Without understanding the root cause of your anxious feelings, it can seem like it’s hitting you out of nowhere. You know the fight-or-flight feeling all too well – tight chest, sweaty palms, pounding heart, dry mouth, and racing thoughts. Stress and anxiety can feel like they’re taking over your entire life. That is why beginning anxiety treatment in Florida or learning coping skills for stress may help!
Reasons Anxiety Treatment and Stress Therapy is Beneficial for Individuals
Living through challenges and hardships, whether personal or collective, isn’t a walk in the park. You can feel emotional when things are changing around you. Moreover, it’s a hard pill to swallow when the changes happening aren’t even close to what you’d hoped for. Feelings of stress and anxiety usually increase the negativity that goes along with new, scary shifts in life. It can be helpful to understand why anxiety happens and where exactly it’s coming from.
Where Does Anxiety Come From?
Uncertainty breeds anxiety. Being unsure of what the future holds can be an uncomfortable feeling. It often comes with a laundry list of “what ifs” and not enough evidence that everything will be okay. Anxiety and stress come from the inability to predict the future. Yet, none of these observations are here to scare you. If anything, they exist to confirm your feelings and experiences. Life is messy and complicated, but it’s also beautiful and wonderful and exciting. Of course, the anxiety suck, and the fear of the unknown can feel unbearable at the moment. Despite the challenges that excessive worry brings, the spans of clarity and peace in life help you remember the joy you are capable of.
Not All Anxiety is Bad
Sometimes it’s worth reminding yourself that anxiety was designed as a mechanism of protection, at least evolutionarily speaking. Chronic anxiety is an extremely ramped-up version of the amount of anxiety needed to survive. Nonetheless, it is helpful to understand that your brain and nervous system are trying to help you even when it feels like they are betraying you. Of course, there is a long list of people that would like to kick anxiety’s butt (let us know if you want to be added). However, it can serve a purpose in situations of actual danger (think of a hungry lion attacking your ancestors).
Learning Coping Skills for Stress and Anxiety Can Help You Develop Control
Here is your gentle reminder that life has seasons. Feelings of anxiety, stress, and overwhelm are temporary. Even if it feels life-altering at the moment. There are things you can do to make the harsh weather of each season feel more comfortable and bearable. Like putting on extra layers when you’re cold, there are ways to keep your anxiety from freezing you or the people around you out. Know that hiding under the covers to binge-watch Netflix is not an evidence-based coping mechanism.
As we know, anxiety stems from a future-focused mindset. Shifting your focus to the present is a great way to remind your nervous system that you aren’t in danger. It’s definitely easier said than done to let go of the unknown, but it can happen with some practice. Mindfulness techniques like meditation, breathing exercises, and sensory grounding help. They can bring you back to your surroundings. Plus, they can take away from the negative, spiraling thoughts your brain is conjuring up. Next time you’re feeling that anxiety well up in your abdomen, try box breathing. To do so, exhale to a count of four. Then, hold your lungs empty for a four-count. Next, inhale to a count of four. Lastly, hold air in your lungs for a count of four. Exhale and repeat as many times as necessary to feel calm and grounded.
You Deserve Space for Yourself
Giving yourself time to unplug is also important in reducing anxiety. Especially in times of collective uncertainty, taking breaks from consuming media is crucial. The constant doom and gloom of
current events are enough to test anyone’s sanity, but those with anxiety tend to be even more sensitive to the dissonance and negativity plastered online. When you need space from the overwhelming nature of the news, politics, and current events, give yourself permission to turn off the TV or your phone. It’s okay to take a step back from being in the know for a little while. Sometimes, resting and recharging is the most productive thing you can do for yourself.
When it feels like everything around you is crumbling, it can be difficult to remember to take care of the basics. Self-care often falls to the wayside when anxiety and fear take over. How are you supposed to wash your hair or do the dishes when your mind is racing to solve the existential crisis it randomly created? No one is saying that you have to eat veggies at every meal, become a yogi, or run for PTA president all at once. Hell, who does that even when their mental health is in check? Taking time each day to make sure that your physical needs are being met is a good first step.
Tips For Self Care from Our Anxiety Therapists
That being said, stress and anxiety can make even the most essential tasks feel impossible. If you need to, set reminder alarms on your phone to drink water throughout the day. Move your body in a way that makes you feel good (yes, impromptu dance parties absolutely count as cardio). Try to make sure you’re getting enough sleep each night (repeat after me, caffeine can not be a substitute for missed sleep every day). I know we’ve all heard it before, but establishing a morning and evening routine can work wonders for your mental health. It truly is amazing how much relief you may feel just by going to bed and waking up at the same time every day. You can even set up specific times in your calendar for exercise, brushing your teeth, and showering if it helps! Anything you can do to create fewer worries and uncertainty in your daily life is helpful.
Practicing Social Support
In addition to self-care, having a network of people that care about you is so beneficial.
Even in times when you can’t meet with others physically, arrange phone calls and video chats to stay connected and support each other. Try scheduling an in-person or virtual game night with friends each month or a weekly check-in with your loved ones on Sundays. While it’s important that you have the skills to self-regulate your anxiety, having loved ones around when you need them is a strength, not a weakness. Humans are social beings, after all (at least some of us are).
If you’re going through a specific challenge that’s causing stress, like losing a family member or coping with addiction, it may be helpful to find a support group. Sharing your feelings with others that are going through the same thing can be really healing. There are plenty of resources locally and online that can help you develop the social network you need to help overcome your anxiety.
Start Practicing Self-Acceptance
Sometimes the best thing we can do is allow ourselves to feel the anxiety we so try to ignore. In moments where anxiety feels heavy (and not in a comfy weighted blanket kind of way), it’s okay to sit with the feeling. That may sound counterintuitive, but the feeling is healing (cheesy, we know, but true). Rather than trying to push the racing thoughts away or numb yourself in unhealthy ways, accept your feelings as they come. Remind yourself that painful and uncomfortable feelings are temporary but valid. Try thinking or saying affirmations out loud, like “I feel anxious, but it will pass. I can manage feelings of panic and regain my calm since I’ve done it before.” Keeping your affirmations grounded in reality is important. They can be a helpful tool in accepting your worries as they come and reframing your thoughts in a positive way. We are our own harshest critics, but you can learn to stop judging yourself with some practice.
Try Anxiety Treatment in Brevard County, FL: Learn Some Helpful Coping Skills for Stress and Anxiety
When stress and anxiety become too much to manage on your own, seeking counseling is a great step in starting to cope and heal. If you’re new to therapy, it doesn’t exactly go the way it’s portrayed on TV and in movies. It’s more than you laying on a couch and us asking you how you feel about things. It’s real and authentic and it’s hard work. Digging deep to understand where your anxiety is truly coming from is not necessarily a fun experience. But, putting in the effort to create the life that you want and deserve is worth the discomfort hands down. Anxiety treatment with online therapy can guide you in understanding how your anxiety is truly affecting your ability to live freely and help you learn the skills to overcome that. Healing is a journey, and truthfully, that journey might look like the movie Planes, Trains, and Automobiles. Rest assured, though, you will get to where you need to be.
Begin Online Therapy and See What Coping Skills For Stress our Anxiety Therapists Can Teach You!
At True You Always, we offer online therapy to Florida residents. That way, you don’t even have to leave your own space to get help with the stress and anxiety that’s taken over your life. Our licensed anxiety therapists in Brevard County, FL, and all over Florida have seen it all, and they’re ready to support you in getting back to the person you want to be. Our team makes it easy for you to get started, just contact us to set up a free consultation or schedule your first appointment.
- Contact True You Always
- Learn more about our anxiety therapists.
- Start developing coping skills for stress and anxiety that make sense for you!
Other Counseling Services at True You Always
We are happy to offer online therapy services from anywhere in Florida to you. At our Florida therapy practice, you may be interested in therapy for first responders, therapy for spouses of first responders, therapy for work stress, anxiety, and stress treatment, or PTSD Treatment and trauma therapy. Additionally, we offer couples therapy, family therapy, therapy for teens, therapy for disordered eating, therapy for adults, substance use disorders, play therapy, therapy for families of individuals with ED, and therapy for allergies, and chronic illness.
We also provide online life coaching which is available anywhere nationwide. Our goal with our coaching services is to help you develop authenticity in your life and to develop more self-love, Regardless of what brings you to our coaching and counseling practice, our goal is to provide a space for you to be your authentic self. With our therapist’s what you see is what you get. Therefore, we welcome people from all backgrounds and identities in our practice. Additionally, we are LGBTQIA+ friendly therapists and are honored to walk with you wherever you are in life. Join us soon in online therapy and receive the support you have been seeking.