5 Steps To Crush Your Anxiety
This post will list the five steps I used to help crush my anxiety, and hopefully, this exercise will help you.
Let's Get Into It
I was feeling overwhelmed, my thoughts were scattered, and I found it very hard to focus on the projects I wanted to work on. Then, someone on Instagram mentioned that I should be making a list of whatever was on my mind and complete those tasks before tackling my book edits.
I thought this was a great idea, but the exercise had me realizing very quickly that what I needed to do was much more than check off a trip to the grocery store, and it's radically changed how I dealt with my anxiety.
I believe this exercise will be especially helpful for those over-thinkers and excessive worriers out there, and I pre-made some templates that you can print out and use if it makes the process easier for you. Those templates will be at the bottom of this blog post. Now, let's start.
Make a list of everything that makes you anxious. It could be your fears, or desires, your wants, or needs. I listed about twenty things myself, and it ranged from climate change to personal vanity. The point being, it doesn't matter how small or big you think your issue is; if it's on your mind, write it down.
Now, separate that list into these two categories: Things Out Of My Control and Things In My Control.
Examples of things out of your control:
A canceled flight.
Examples of things in your control:
Taking care of your physical, mental, and emotional needs.
The way you treat other people.
Learning a new skill.
This step will be critical to the process because it's a visual way to see what you can't control and what you need to focus on. This separation also helped me realize that I wasn't a failure because of uncontrollable events that interrupted my life. If that is a concern for you, you can now set that fear aside.
Once separated, look at your lists carefully. Now ask yourself, "Why do I fear this thing?" or "Why do I want this in my life?"
Be honest with yourself about the reasons you feel the way you do. The answers you get can be illuminating, and you'll be able to find the root of your problem and focus on its solution more clearly.
Is there any correlation between the words on your list? Do any of your answers stem from the same base need or fear? If the answer is yes, then finding a solution for one of those problems may solve the others by default.
One fear I listed was Death. I have no control over that, but why did I fear this? Well, my father just passed away from diabetes, and his death was scary and horrible. He never took care of himself, and many of my family also have diabetes who don't take care of themselves.
What I was terrified of was dying like my father. So I asked myself how I could avoid his fate? Well, I could take better care of my physical health by cutting more sugar from my diet, eating healthier, and working out every day. Then I asked myself if this solution could fix other concerns on my list?
The answer was yes.
By eating healthier and working out regularly, I'll improve my physical health and my mental health, which in turn would fix several other worries on my list. I'll feel more attractive, my stress will decrease, and I'll have more energy in my day to stay focused on writing.
I continued to do this for each word, and I whittled my twenty problems down to five easy solutions. For you, it could only be one, or it could be more. If nothing else, you'll feel more organized and have a solid plan on how to continue.
Now that you've found the correlations between your anxieties, wants, and needs, and you've pinpointed the steps you must take to solve your problems, you are ready to implement these solutions into a daily schedule.
Committing to a daily schedule may seem overwhelming for some of you, but you only need to devote a short amount of time focusing on these solutions each day. I recommend one hour to each task, but your solutions will be different than mine, and you may only need to commit yourself to fifteen minutes depending on what's right for you. By sticking to your schedule, you will form better habits and become the best version of yourself with less anxiety than you had before.
As I went through my list, I felt like my problems were now manageable. I was the one in control, I knew what to fix, and my anxieties started to disappear. I hope it's the same results for you.
Printable Schedule & Templates
Here's a less fancy version for those of you who want lines.