Everyone gets anxious sometimes, and it is normal to experience some anxiety in our lives. It is when these feelings are overwhelming, paralysing, or intrusive, that anxiety can have a negative impact on your life.
Anxiety affects millions in the UK, yet is still a taboo subject. WarriorKind is trying to break the stigma by encouraging those with mental health issues, such as anxiety, to talk openly about their thoughts and feelings to help themselves and others.
As well as talking, there are other things you can do to ease those thoughts, which we will explore here.
What exactly is anxiety?
Anxiety is a situation based emotion, it is worry, fear, frightening sometimes. A slight level of anxiety is normal, and should be relieved once the situation is over. Physically you may become aware of your heart beating in your chest, feel shaky or hot.
Anxiety disorders can change your habits and behavior, limiting what activities you do in order to avoid anxiety causing situations. The difference between healthy anxiety and a disorder is when these feelings are all consuming, intense, and unnecessary amplified in the situation you are in, interfering with your day to day life.
How do I get diagnosed?
A trip to your GP is the first step towards getting a diagnosis. They will ask you questions about how you are feeling, your situation, how you are currently coping. They may prescribe medication or refer you to counselling. Our directory will have lots of WarriorKind approved therapists you can refer yourself to if you do not want the therapy provided by the NHS.
It is important to preserve with treatment, whether it be medication, therapy or both. Your first options may not work for you. It is also important you take any medication safely, and only stop taking it with help from your GP.
Tips to cope with anxiety
Understand anxiety. Try keeping a diary of what you are doing and how you feel at different times to help identify what’s affecting you and what you need to take action on. Look for patterns to see if certain things aren’t helping your thoughts, such as caffeine or alcohol.
Talking to others in a safe environment like WarriorKind about your thoughts feelings and experiences can help.
Allow yourself time to think about your worries, and try to think of them from another point of view. Be kind to yourself.
Mindfulness can help retrain your thinking process, making you aware of your thoughts and looking into what causes them.
Relaxation, meditation and breathing can help reduce the mental and physical effects of anxiety.
Try to slowly increase your exposure to things that cause your anxiety, this will desensitise you to them.