I have noticed in myself lately that I am feeling a huge sense of overwhelm, more stress, and increased anxiety. These are things I do deal with on a daily basis and am very aware of in my own life. I have been in and out of therapy since I was about 8 years old. When I was younger I didn’t really understand why I was in therapy, then my sister died tragically and it was necessary. I was mad about therapy then, but now that I’m older I look back and can’t thank my mom enough for making sure I got the help I needed. I use a lot of the techniques my therapists taught me through the years and it really helps me today with my day to day life.
I have a few things that I do when overwhelm starts to creep in which is always a symptom of my anxiety.
1. Focus on my Happiness.
When I was younger I always felt the need to do everything and anything people asked of me. I never wanted to say anything that might hurt someone elses feelings even if it meant keeping my actual opinion to myself. I felt an immense amount of pressure to ‘keep the peace’ and sometimes as an adult this comes back to get me. Literally no one asks this of me and no one expects this of me, it’s just this weird pressure I put on myself to keep everyone else happy even if it comes at the cost of my own happiness. So I have to step back and remind myself that I am of no use to anyone if I’m not happy, especially myself.
2. Take Control of the Information I consume.
Especially in times when there is a lot of negativity streaming on the internet, the news, and in daily conversation I have to mindful of the information I am consuming. It’s important to do a cleanse of your social media feeds and keep things positive. If the news is bring you down, like it does me sometimes, it’s important to majorly limit how much you consume or just stop watching all together. SO helpful.
Exercise releases endorphins which is a natural mood booster, but I also find that it helps me get my frustrations out and clear my mind.
4. Choose Again.
I recently started reading Super Attractor by Gabriel Bernstein and she talks about her Choose Again Method. Basically when you have a negative thought you acknowledge that thought, forgive yourself for having the thought, and then replace it with a different positive thought. Works every time.
I don’t meditate in the traditional sense of sitting with my legs crossed humming. Not at all, and I believe there are many ways you can meditate. I simply turn on relaxing instrumental music and clean (seriously), edit photos, read a book, or sit in silence. The main focus here is that I’m trying to clear out the noise of the world and find a peaceful moment.
If I’m really feeling frustrated I will sit down and journal out my feelings. This is one tip from when I was younger that my therapist would have me do. I had a hard time talking about the way I was feeling, but writing it out was always easy. I didn’t have to worry about someones reaction as I was trying to explain myself. I could just write it out. To this day this still works for me.
*This advice is in no way supposed to be used in the place of talking to a professional. If you need help always seek the help of a professional which I am not. These are just things that I do that have helped me through the years- if you don’t know where to start https://www.therapytribe.com is a good resource*