How to learn to manage anxiety? 5 practical tips
Some tips and recommendations to learn how to regulate the way anxiety affects you.
Anxiety is, for many people, a challenge to be faced almost daily. While the ability to feel anxious is a resource that has allowed us to survive for thousands of generations, sometimes we can find it difficult to experience the feelings and situations to which it gives rise.
Fortunately, the human being is an extraordinarily adaptable animal, and therefore, although we cannot totally control our emotions or 100% avoid their appearance, we do have the ability to manage them and channel them in part in one direction or another.
So... how can we learn to manage anxiety? In this brief article we will look at several key ideas about this.
5 basic tips to learn how to manage anxiety
As we have long known, it is impossible to pretend not to experience anxiety of any kind simply because it is an experience coupled with a certain discomfort or discomfort. Not only is it biologically impossible, but it is also absurd from a pragmatic point of view.
Anxiety is a set of psychological and physiological processes that helps us to prioritize our goals and to helps us to prioritize our goals and predisposes us to react quickly to avoid problems that will keep us from to avoid problems that take us away from them, and because of this, it is useful from an evolutionary point of view: it helps us to survive.
But one thing is to have or not to have anxiety, and another is our way of making it influence our behavior.. In this we do have a respectable margin of maneuver, and that is why although we cannot suppress the content of this set of emotions, we can influence the "form" they take. And this is so because we humans have a great facility to adapt to what happens to us.
Not only can we learn, but we can also learn how to learn, i.e., we can apply strategies and techniques to facilitate the development of our emotions, apply strategies and techniques to facilitate the development of skills and the acquisition of useful knowledge, both about the environment and about ourselves.about the environment as well as about ourselves.
So, when it comes to learning how to manage anxiety, keep these tips in mind.
1. Develop the habit of self-observation
To be able to gain freedom when experiencing anxiety, it is necessary to know beforehand which are those mental routes by which this one usually leads us when we put "the automatic pilot" and we limit ourselves to live it in a passive way. In this way, everything that will follow will be much easier.
So, the advisable thing is to have a place in which to write down what makes us feel anxiety, when it arises, and situations in which it appears. to write down what makes us feel anxiety, when it arises, and the situations in which it appears.. This takes some practice, but if you maintain a certain consistency over the weeks, it is easy to see progress in self-knowledge.
2. Assume that you will have to learn by practice, not just by theory.
Anxiety rarely appears in isolation in the individual; normally, it is a phenomenon linked to certain contexts: university, a family dinner, an event in which you have to speak in public, a first date, etc. In all these situations there are a series of (pessimistic) expectations that can favor the appearance of anxiety.
While it cannot be denied that expectations have a real embodiment in our minds, neither can it be denied that they are, in part, an imagined, subjective phenomenon. However, it is important to know that all those catastrophic knowing that all those catastrophic thoughts that go through our mind are just ideas and beliefs, does not make us capable of mastering them..
Therefore, it is important to rule out the possibility of learning to manage anxiety simply by reflecting on the irrationality of our fears. We must prove to ourselves that they are irrational by interacting with what we fear.
3. Identify what costs you the least and what costs you the most.
It is essential that you do not demand too much of yourself when exposing yourself to situations that generate anxiety. At the same time, you cannot always stay in what is often called your "comfort zone": without a certain level of effort and discomfort, there is no progress.
That's why, first of all you should set yourself relatively simple and easy challenges in which you will try to maintain a healthy attitude and behavior to something that makes you anxious, and when you achieve it in a consistent way, move on to another situation a little more complicated and difficult.
4. Detect unhealthy anxiety management patterns
Many times, anxiety problems are reinforced by what we do to try to alleviate the discomfort it produces..
For example, some people eat when they feel a lot of distress and stress, so they develop an inappropriate eating pattern that makes them feel worse. Identifying situations of this type in oneself is key to progress.
5. Set short-term goals
Think of it like learning a new language: it will probably take you months to master this new knowledge, but along the way, it will be easier to make progress if you set concrete short- and medium-term goals. In fact, this is one of the principles of motivation, this is one of the most basic principles of motivationCombining ambitious goals with those that we can achieve on a daily basis helps us to move forward.