Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 17th 2016 Contents 16 | WOW MAGAZINE
Sunday Guardian www.guardian.co.tt July 17, 2016
Some of us suffer from it as early as the
first day of school. Others get anxious about
exams, or public speaking. Some develop
anxiety about their health, while others are
plagued by social anxiety. Then there is anxi-
ety over a new job or even marriage. Things
can get so bad that we don't even want to
leave the house.
Anxiety can either be big or small. It can
either be a slight hindrance, or it can be to-
tally crippling. Sometimes, we can control it
so that it doesn't ruin our lives, but some-
times it can completely take over us, pre-
venting us from even getting out of bed in
If you're struggling with anxiety at the
moment to the point where you no longer
feel like yourself, it's time to take the fight to
anxiety. It's time to beat it and reclaim your
life. So let's take a look at 10 easy tips on
how to overcome anxiety.
One of the simplest tips on how to over-
come anxiety is to smile. Always smile. Smil-
ing makes everything seem so much better,
and it can even make your anxiety seem like
nothing at all.
Think about it: When we're anxious, we
feel miserable. We feel so down that we're
constantly frowning, and walking around
with hunched shoulders. We look defeated
and we feel defeated.
If you started to smile more often, to
friends, strangers, family and even yourself
in the mirror, you'll suddenly feel a lot more
positive. In fact, you'll feel so positive that
you may even reduce your symptoms of
anxiety. Try it!
BE REALISTIC: WHAT'S THE
WORSE THAT CAN HAPPEN?
Sit down and think about the worst case
scenario. Really, what is the actual worst
thing that could happen?
For example, let's say you're anxious about
an exam. Spend some time mulling over the
worst case scenario. It could be that you fail,
or that you don't get into the college of your
Or, it could be that you have a panic at-
Instead of fighting the fear, embrace it.
Live with it. Show it you're not scared of it.
Eventually, after some time, the panic will
ALTER YOUR DIET
Anxiety is a funny thing. Some people say
that anxiety makes them want to eat more,
while others say that anxiety steals their ap-
petite. Sometimes it makes us crave certain
foods, while other times it makes us feel sick
at the very sight of food.
If you're struggling to eat with your anxi-
ety, try to eat food that is easier to consume,
such as fruit or soup. Don't battle with your
food; take your time, and if you really don't
feel like eating something -- just don't eat it.
Don't force yourself.
It's really important, though, that if you are
going to eat something you must eat some-
thing healthy. Your body needs support right
now, so give it some nutrients, such as vita-
mins, minerals and antioxidants. Nurture
your body, look after it. The last thing you
need right now is fatty food that gives you
brain fog. Not cool.
DO WHAT RELAXES YOU
Next good tip on how to overcome anxiety
is to do what relaxes you. If a bath relaxes
you, stop what you are doing and take a
If a walk in the park eases your stress, go
for a walk in the park.
Don't keep putting these things off be-
cause you've still got "work to do" -- heal
yourself today by doing the things that relax
LEARN HOW TO BREATHE
When we're suffering with anxiety, our
breathing can sometimes go all out of
whack. It's weird -- we somehow forget to
This can have strange consequences on
our body. For example, breathing that is out
of whack can cause digestive issues, such as
flatulence. This is because when we're anx-
ious, we tend to swallow more air, which can
lead to a build up of gas.
Proper breathing is needed whenever
we're suffering a panic attack. To calm down,
you need to take long, deep breaths as op-
posed to short, shallow ones.
LIVE IN THE MOMENT
Another great tip on how to overcome
anxiety is to live in the present moment.
One of the biggest things that fuels our
anxiety is the fear of what is to come.
For example, let's say I'm anxious about a
public speech I have to give tomorrow. I'm
anxious because I just know everything is
going to go wrong. I'm already picturing my-
self talking to the crowd, and it's making me
anxious. Basically, I've already envisioned the
whole event before it's even happened.
We need to stop doing this; we need to
stop preempting the act before it's occurred.
Instead, we need to start living in the pres-
We need to deal with what is happening
now rather than what might happen later
on. What will be will be.
FACE UP TO YOUR FEAR
It sounds scary to have to face up to your
fear. If you're scared of lifts, the last thing
you want to do right now is get in a lift. Be-
cause you know you're going to get trapped
in there. You just know it.
These thoughts and fears become patho-
logical to the point where you constantly
dwell on them. You're frozen, you can't be
yourself. It's so much better to confront the
fear and prove to yourself that, actually, that
wasn't so bad after all. And now you can
Next good tip on how to overcome anxiety
is to have some play time. I know, I know;
you're not 12 years old anymore. You're "too
old" for playtime.
But think about it: Cats get anxious, as do
dogs. But when have you ever seen an anx-
ious dog or cat who is playing? They look
Their minds are distracted and they're lov-
ing life. The same goes for kids.
So why can't you have a bit of playtime to
help distract you from your bad thoughts?
What's stopping you from letting your hair
down and having a bit of childlike fun?
Maybe you want to play a prank on some-
one, play frisbee on the beach or run around
an art gallery. Be rebellious.
ACCEPT THAT YOU ARE ANXIOUS
Lots of people have trouble accepting that
they are actually anxious, and instead con-
vince themselves that there must be an un-
derlying cause for the way they're feeling.
This underlying cause could be anything,
from a tumour to a fault nervous system.
Not accepting your anxiety can make your
situation a whole lot worse. Rather than
confronting and dealing with your anxiety,
you will instead exacerbate your symptoms
by looking for something else that just isn't
MAKE TIME FOR YOUR FRIENDS
Our final tip on how to overcome anxiety
is to make time for your friends. If you've
been hiding away recently because of your
anxiety, this can only make things a lot
worse. Research has suggested that spend-
ing time with others can help us to feel bet-
ter about ourselves; it can take our minds off
our woes and remind us that life is for living
and not for worrying.
here isn't a person on this earth
who hasn't suffered from anxi-
ety at some time or another.
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