1. You are not alone
Almost everyone experiences anxiety at some points in there life, be it worrying about their children, fear of public speaking or flying or some other form of generalized anxiety.
Almost everyone who comes into my offices suffers from some form of anxiety. To care about other people is to have anxiety. However, if your anxiety is starting to impede the way you live your life, it may be time to start thinking about what you can do about it.
2. Your anxiety has some benefits
Know that your anxiety is there for a reason. It could be that there is a real danger. Perhaps your anxiety is covering some other emotion that you are not ready to deal with yet. It could be keeping you off the streets and making sure you don't get hurt. Anxiety is adaptive when dangers are real and serious. We would never want to get rid of our anxiety completely.
Anxious people are reliable, they are planners and thinkers (which is what gets in their way sometimes). They will often have a plan and have thought of all the things that could go wrong and accounted for them. Anxious people are often very sensitive. They are super aware of everything going on, smells, sounds, people and possibilities.
3. Diet and exercise affect your anxiety
We all know there are many benefits to eating well and exercising but did you know that it could improve your anxiety?
Exercise can be a great way to release pent up emotions and physical tension while also releasing feelings of fear and worry. Additionally, maintaining a regular exercise routine has been associated with improved mood, enhanced self-esteem, and increased energy levels.
Caffeine is one of the most common dietary triggers that can impact people with anxiety. Even people that don't normally feel anxious will start exhibiting anxious behaviours after a few cups of coffee! Other foods that may trigger anxiety include processed foods and foods high in sugar and white flour.
4. Meditation can help with anxiety
(there are a lot of apps available for this)
It has been proven that mindfulness meditation can change the structure and function of the brain to make it work better. There are lots of apps available to help you with meditation.
A few of my favourites are:
Headspace - an app that teaches you and guides you through 10 minute mindfulness meditations. The first 3 weeks are free and after that you pay a monthly fee and have unlimited access meditations that focus on different areas of your life you would like to improve
Insight timer - this app is free. You can use it just as a timer for your own meditation and there are also tons of guided meditations available.
Gaia - this program offers yoga practices, meditations and educational videos.
5. Help is available.
The good thing about anxiety being so prevalent is that a lot of research is being done on it and there is a lot of help available. You don't need to suffer alone. The things listed above are some that can try on your own but there are lots of other resources in the city, and of course you can always enlist the help of a qualified therapist.
If you are interested in learning more about your anxiety and how to deal with it consider attending my workshop on anxiety which is being held on July 27th at the Inner Arts Collective.
The workshop will incorporate mindfulness exercise, movement and creativity to help you get out of your thinking mind and give you some tools to use in your every day life. There will also be reflection and discussion to help you better understand your anxiety.
To register or for more information, please see their event on Facebook:
Emily uses an Integrative Approach to therapy that draws on various modalities. It is holistic in that it deals with body, mind and spirit. The methods she uses will depend on what works best for you and your situation. Emily provides a safe, non-judgmental space where you can talk about your feelings and concerns, Many of which you may not feel comfortable talking about in your day-to-day relationships.