If you are getting annoyed at the fact that you are still struggling with anxiety, then even using one of these 8 tips can seriously impact how fast you heal yourself.
How do I know that? Because I struggled with a severe anxiety disorder for years and when I used the following 8 tips… I finally healed myself from anxiety.
Time for the first tip!
One day I was sitting in the office and I felt a weird sensation in my body. My hands were tingling, my heart was racing and it felt like I was losing control.
I didn’t know anything about anxiety back then, and the only thing I knew was that it felt crazy uncomfortable.
So, I stood up (yes I was alone) and said: “Why am I feeling this stupid feeling? It makes no sense!”
And then my misery began… every time I got anxious, I felt more fear and frustration which made my anxiety worse.
This brings me to the first tip, which is to be OK with your anxiety.
Tip #1. Being OK with it
It’s completely normal to fight and resist what you don’t want in life… that’s what we were taught.
We avoid (and fight) people we don’t like, we got angry at ourselves if we didn’t get high grades or if we messed something up.
And if we are feeling anxious, which we all don’t want, it makes sense to resist and fight those feelings away.
We believe that the more we fight it and get angry on it, the sooner our Anxiety thinks: “Well, he is so angry and frustrated at me… I don’t think he likes me… I’ll grab my bag and leave.”
But our anxiety doesn’t think that, as it THRIVES on the emotion of fear and frustration. And if we keep feeding it those emotions, then we are stuck in a vicious cycle.
So, I practiced allowing my anxiety, which is not the same as accepting it… and by doing this I trained myself that whenever anxiety comes up I no longer resist it. I eliminated my fear of fear.
And only NOW I had something to work with, which makes you ready for the second tip.
Because when you are anxious, you are in an aroused state. You feel on edge because of the cortisol and adrenaline that want you to take action and fight or flight the perceived danger.
But most of the time what we do when we feel anxious or panicky… is trying to sit still and hope by sitting still and distracting ourselves that the feeling will go away. But this is like stepping on the gas pedal and the breaks at the same time… so my question to you:
What can we do with our aroused energy? Let’s use it by doing…
Tip #2. Exercise
Because anxiety gives you a burst of energy, why not use it to redirect it towards something we need energy for? Instead of sitting still and reading a book, which is very hard to do when you are anxious, why not go to the gym.
Embrace your anxious feelings and have the best exercise of your entire life to then come back home and celebrate your win… because you again completed a great workout.
I used to do this all the time. Whenever I felt anxious and tense, I would go to the gym and use my excess energy to get results in the gym and work towards a better body.
Not only does exercise release many feel-good chemicals, like dopamine, you also work towards a better body, become more confident and make small wins after feeling anxious.
Don’t go to the gym every single time you feel anxious, because then you rely on the gym for feeling good. But a few times a week will massively help your healing.
But there is more you can do to overcome anxiety!
Back in 2017 when I experienced my first anxiety attack and dealt with low self-esteem, I did something that changed my entire life.
I was weak, both physically and mentally… had many digestive problems and my skin was as pale as “snow”.
But I transformed myself into someone new by changing the following thing!
Tip #3. Diet
If you struggle with anxiety… there is nothing more important than cleaning up your diet. As clear thinking starts with a healthy diet.
Your brain needs the right fuel to function properly and think clearly. Make sure you give it to him.
When I changed my diet, I eliminated dairy products, sugar and tried to avoid as much gluten as possible… and just doing this will already make a massive impact on your brain within 30 days, especially when you eliminate the first 2.
There are many alternatives for dairy that you can choose, so it should be a problem to no longer consume it.
But avoiding the bad stuff is only 50% of the game, the other 50% is increasing your intake of healthy nutrients, which you can do by drinking smoothies.
So, once you allowed your anxiety, started to exercise and improved your diet… you are on your way to less anxiety… but what if you suddenly feel a burst of anxiety? What do you do?
The following tip looks like the first one but is a little different. You know, when I was in the office that day and felt anxiety, there is one thing I should have done that would show my brain that anxiety is not something to be anxious of.
Tip #4. Responding in better ways
Instead of frustration and anger, I should have responded with self-compassion and self-forgiveness. This seems counterintuitive, but these are the healing qualities of your heart that show your anxious brain that you are safe the moment you feel them.
And I explain this more in-depth in my FREE Masterclass on anxiety, so click the link in the description if you want to learn more about with this.
Tip #5. Eliminating coffee
During the Pandemic, I felt so useless, anxious and unproductive and believed that the more coffee I drank, the more productive I became… so I drank 5-6 cups of coffee a day! Which is not recommended if you struggle with anxiety.
Why? Why Wouter, because I like coffee. Coffee is my life.
Because coffee can mimic the symptoms of anxiety: like a racing heart, feeling on edge, and headaches for example.
So if you struggle with anxiety and after a cup of coffee feels one of those symptoms, you can mistake them for anxiety, while actually coffee was the cause.
That creates unnecessary frustration. I wrote an article about coffee and anxiety as well, so check it out after this one.
But we need 3 more tips, starting with the next one: sleep.
Tip #6. Better sleep
Don’t you agree that nothing in the world feels more exhausting than battling an anxiety disorder multiple times a week or multiple times a day? It makes you feel tired right?
That’s why it is very important to sleep better… because sleep allows your body and mind to recharge, so when you wake up you feel refreshed and have more energy.
But without enough sleep, we don’t give our brain and body the time it needs to rest, which results in you being more sensitive to stress.
So, a good night’s sleep is important to process thoughts and emotions… which every anxious people has a lot of.
And to sleep better at night it is important to use the following tip during the day!
Tip #7. More checking in with yourself
These days we check in more often with our phones than we do with ourselves. And when we don’t do this during the day, and we avoid our thoughts and emotions, they all come to say HI when our head hits the pillow.
It results in worrying before bed, which makes it harder to fall asleep.
Can you promise me to check in with yourself after this article? To spend a minute or 5 with yourself to just do nothing… to let uncomfortable emotions and thoughts come up if they want to.
Anxious people are very good at distracting themselves from their emotions and thoughts, which is what I used to do. Well, I don’t ask you to check in every time you feel anxious, but simply a few times a day stand still and spend some time with yourself without distraction.
Tip #8. Believing in healing
When I was at the peak of my anxiety, I remember telling myself the following:
“I wish I could go back to my non-anxious self again… but I no longer believe that he exists.”
But after studying anxiety for a few years and experimenting with it myself, I realized that anxiety was nothing more than a learned behaviour in most cases and that I simply had to unlearn to be anxious.
I had to do things differently to get back in harmony with myself. Anxiety is not who you were, who you are and who you are going to be… because your body is always moving towards balance and harmony. The only thing that stands in the way are your actions, which is why it is important to learn the right actions.
I explain this in more depth in my Masterclass on Anxiety so I highly recommend you check it out.
Struggling with anxiety can be tough. You feel on edge all the time and every time it comes back, you start to believe it is more part of your identity. You do whatever you can to stop it, but it keeps bothering you…
But the 8 tips in this article are a powerful push in the right direction and with proper practice, you loosen the grip anxiety has on you.
But did you know that too much worry is a major cause of people’s anxiety? That’s why I recommend THIS article, where I teach you how to worry less instantly!