Ways to Manage Anxiety

You know that tightening of your chest is almost a burning sensation, and you are not sure if it is anxiety symptoms or if it is something way worse so you start questioning what is going on with you. You get more and more nervous because you’re not only worried about, why you’re not sure what made you anxious but now you’re worried about why you feel this way. I can totally relate, being a person who learned to overcome this, I wanted to share some proven strategies of ways to manage anxiety.

Anxiety Causes

Do you know what is causing your anxiety? Anxiety lives in the future, when one is anxious it is always about the things they believe while even unrealistic beliefs will happen in the future. For example, you are anxious because you have to take a test, you just know you will fail because you hate tests. You are anxious because you know your rent or house payment is due you feel like you will never earn enough to pay it on time. Maybe you are anxious because you have this really awesome project but you think your friends will judge you for it.

Research has identified unhealthy negative emotions cause anxiety, and unconstructive and harmful behaviors or actions. Since anxiety is a negative experience it directly relates to one emotionally and behaviorally and is an underlying fear. Three things seem to be linked directly to these fears.

  • Fear of adversity, uncertainty, discomfort
  • Fear of unfairness or disappointment
  • Fear of judgment or rejection

Anxiety Symptoms

While anxiety affects everyone differently, the symptoms of anxiety can be hard to link to the cause. Do you know what is causing this feeling? Why am I so tired all the time? I feel so worried my chest hurts. All are examples of things people who have anxiety say.

The following have been identified as known anxiety:

  • Feeling restless, wound-up, or on edge.
  • Being easily fatigued.
  • Having difficulty concentrating.
  • Being irritable.
  • Having headaches, muscle aches, stomachaches, or unexplained pains.
  • Difficulty controlling feelings of worry.
  • Having sleep problems, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep.


Ways to Manage Anxiety

So what do we do about it? Managing anxiety is actually a daunting task when your feel like getting out of bed is not even an option today. You want out of that shell that is holding you back and you know it is not you but how can you get back to yourself?

If you’re like me you have googled everything and tried to find answers, you read articles and listened to e-books and self-improvements but you are still fending off that feeling. Then I discovered the belief systems of judgment, discomfort, and disapproval, all of which had something to do with my anxiety. I used mapping my feelings to uncover my beliefs.

Beliefs for example include:

Approval Symptoms:

• Places unrealistic expectations on oneself

• Over-concern with what other people think

• Achievement and popularity determine self-worth

• Self-critical, lack of self-acceptance

Judgment Symptoms:

• Unrealistic expectations of others, including expecting them to be infallible, perfect

• Assuming you are the sole authority on what is right and wrong

• Assuming you have authority over others

• Believing everyone else is responsible for catering to your needs

Comfort Symptoms:

• Unrealistic expectations about life being perfect

• Belief that living a trouble-free life is a birthright

• Lack of belief in your ability to cope with adversity

• Complete rejection of all life problems as unacceptable

Comfort was my issue. My job was ending and I was scared of the future, I had unrealistic expectations. For example, how will I pay for my house, and feed my family, and what will I do? I discovered I had an underlying belief my life was crashing out of control and I was riddled with procrastination, feel-good behaviors, and anxiety. Figuring this out was a task!

One major thing I found was physically challenging yourself allows your mind the space to think, this is always a great head space to be in when I am anxious I just run and run until my chest eases then I mind map…

If you can, take 20 minutes a day and do something to allow your brain to wander off into nowhere. This could be reading, running, meditating, yoga, any method that works for you.

Another way I manage anxiety is with small goals. Every day write down 5 small goals. It might look something like this.

  1. Get up on time
  2. Write something to help others
  3. Run dogs
  4. Work out run 2 miles
  5. Journal

I also write down why I am grateful every day. It looks something like this

  1. I am thankful for the opportunities I have and the support system that surrounds me
  2. I am thankful for Tish and how she inspires me
  3. I am thankful that my dogs make me crazy and smile every day…..
  4. I am thankful for my home and how warm I am in the winter
  5. I am thankful for the experiences in life and for getting to this point

All great strategies to let go of the anxiety

Anxiety Mind Map

Mind Map

I developed this mind map to start identifying why I was anxious, get your free copy here, then I used consciously asking myself “Can I control this?”. If the answer was yes I did the 5-4-3-2-1 countdown and I did the thing I needed to do to control what was making me anxious.

What if the answer was no? I would identify the belief causing me to feel this way and replace it with a RATIONAL belief. What this means is understanding just because I cannot control the future, I can control my thoughts, beliefs, and emotions. I can focus on those things that will impact the future. I can rationally know that if I do something to grow my business or look for another source of income it is likely I will make the payments.

Essentially my life was NOT crashing to rock bottom and I could control the things that I can do. I used small, like 5-4-3-2-1 I am working on my next article today. Then 5-4-3-2-1 I am going to the gym today. Then the next thing I knew I was helping clients become less anxious and my anxiety was disappearing.

I combined the 5-second Rule from (Mel Robbins) with the map to see reoccurring patterns of anxiety and found so many beliefs that have been turned upside down.

Anxiety Journal

Next journal about it. It seems like a lot to do to dedicate yourself to these tasks but the path to reclaiming your life includes you deciding. Make the decision! Write about it and identify your underlying beliefs.

Change the irrational beliefs to rational realistic beliefs.

Ask yourself the questions on the mind map. Then journal about your answers.

Reflect on your thoughts with these questions in mind.

Is my belief logical? Why or why not?

Is there evidence that disproves or counters this belief system?

Is there any evidence that shows this belief system to be true?

Is this belief productive? Where or what is it getting me?

Is it harmful to me? How?

Do you know what is the worst-case scenario if I do NOT get what I think I must (or if I get what I do NOT want)?

What positive things might happen if I do NOT get what I think I must have (or if I get what I do NOT


What rational beliefs can you identify to replace irrational thinking?


Overall, there are many ways to manage your anxiety, and identifying those beliefs causing the anxiety will be the way to overcome the feelings of anxiety and help you push forward. Don’t give up, journal, run, mind map do whatever it takes to get yourself back.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *