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25 Apr 2020

5 ANXIETY BUSTERS

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We are living in unprecedented days, we hear it all the time and it is true. Most people living today have never experienced or gone through anything like this before, certainly not on such a massive global scale. The coronavirus epidemic has completely shaken the whole world, literally paralysed economies and perhaps the worst part of it is that we were not prepared for it. It’s taken us all by surprise and we are left wondering what just hit us!

Fear and Anxiety have been a big issue in our modern world for a number of years now, but with coronavirus and covid-19, Fear and Anxiety has become an epidemic of itself.  We all know that anxiety is bad for our wellbeing, both physical and mental. Now I don’t think anybody loves feeling anxious or being paralysed with fear and certainly no one wants all the health problems it brings like high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, respiratory disorders, insomnia or related problems like drug and alcohol abuse. However sometimes fear and anxiety can be so overpowering, one can feel helpless and out of control. In this blog I would like to share with you 5 anxiety busters I know will help you deal with fear and anxiety and gain back control of your life.

  1. Stop Worrying

Well that’s easier said than done I hear you say and yes that is true, but it can be done. Consider this for a moment. 80% of what most people worry about are things that have not yet occurred and probably will never occur. About 12% of what people worry about are things they have no control over, things they can do nothing about in any event. Only about 8% of what people worry about are actually valid reasons for worry. If you are doubting the accuracy of these percentages, assess them against your own life and the things you worry about and you will find that they are not too far off. So stop worrying.

A key to stopping yourself from worrying is making it a habit to put things in their true perspective, rather than allowing yourself to be controlled by the emotion of the moment. Let me share two tips that will help you gain the right perspective every time.

  • A. Identify and Isolate. By this I mean identify the real source of your worry or anxiety and isolate it from the rest of your life. I am reminded of the story of a guy who had a really important interview to attend, only to wake up to find out he had a flat tire. To make matters worse, he did not have a spare. He decided to jump on the train. The train turned up late and as a result he got to the interview venue late only to realise he did not have his folder with his portfolio which he needed for the interview … he had left it on the train! His conclusion? My life is in a mess. That is however not necessarily true. He had just had a bad day. When we learn to identify the real issues in our lives and isolate them it will leave us calmer and in a better frame of mind to deal with them rather than having that feeling of overwhelm that comes with sweeping statements like “my whole life is upside down” or “Nothing ever works out right for me” Learning to identify and isolate issues will help you put things in the right perspective.

 

  • B. Find something to be grateful for every single day. Somebody said I was complaining about having no shoes to wear until I saw the person with no legs. Try not to focus so much on what you don’t have, that you lose sight of what you do have. By all means have goals, aspire to be, do and have more but don’t neglect what you do have. Developing and attitude of gratitude will help you put things in perspective.

 

  1. Control the Controlables

Rather than worrying about things that are outside of your control, focus on the things that you can control because where your focus goes, there your energy will flow. One of the reasons we get anxious is because we don’t have control. A lot of people are anxious right now because they don’t know what is happening to the world, or what will happen. Nobody can tell us how long this coronavirus epidemic will last, or how long we will all be in isolation, so people are anxious because they feel they have lost control of their lives. However, this is not true. There are still lots of things we can control. In fact, the things that really matter in terms of determining the direction of our lives are still very much within our control.

You can control your mind and the thoughts you allow yourself to dwell on. That is completely within your control. Nobody can force you to think thoughts you do not wish to think. You can control your emotions and your attitude. These are your choices and we all know how important a role our attitude plays in our lives and the results we get. How about your daily choices and your actions? These are within your control. How you are using your 24 hours every day of every week is within your control. You choose what you fill your days with. Are you going to spend your days being self-absorbed or are you going to invest some of your time in adding value to others and helping others out? Are you going to spend the whole day playing video games, or scrolling through social media or are you going to take your destiny in your own hands and decide to invest in your own growth and development? These are things that are within your control, so control the things you can control instead of worrying about the things that are outside of your control.

  1. Control Your Media Intake

There is a lot of information out there about a lot of things. Everybody has something to say about the coronavirus. You however don’t have to ingest all the information that is available. This is to my mind one of the downsides to all of us living in the world wide web. Human beings were not designed to consume and digest as much information as we have available to us right now. The problem is because it is out there, people think they have to take it all in and they will be missing out if they don’t. You really don’t need to have all the information 247.

Firstly, you have to determine the right source to go to for your information. The media mostly have their own agenda. They more than anything else are fuelling the fear pandemic. Make sure you are getting your information from a credible source, but also limit your dosage. Don’t spend all day, every day on the news channel and on social media looking for the latest news on the coronavirus or covid-19 and to find out how many deaths there are in your country and every other country of the world. I am not saying bury your head in the sand and act like nothing is happening. Get enough information to know what is expected of you as a responsible citizen and to keep yourself and others safe, but please learn to switch off.

  1. Invest in Real, Meaningful Relationships

When I say relationships, I am not talking about the 5,000 friends you have on Facebook or the 10,000 followers you have on Instagram. I am talking about real, meaningful relationships. Yes, we cannot interact physically like we used to, but most people have more time on their hands now than ever before. You can now be intentional and deliberate in building real, meaningful relationships. Thank goodness we can still stay connected through social media. This is the time to take stock. If you find that your life is actually empty and you don’t really have people you can truly call friends, then maybe you need to invest time in building those real friendships, even if they are only a few, rather than just spending time interacting with loads of people that you have no real relationship with. What about your family? This might be the time to really reconnect with them on a deeper level.

  1. Explore Faith and Spirituality

I know not everybody is religious, and quite frankly, I am not necessarily talking about religion. The fact is whether you are religious or not, you will no doubt appreciate that there is more to life than meets the eye. Yes, we live in a physical world, but it’s not all just physical. I can say for myself that it is my faith and my belief that keeps me strong and keeps me grounded and especially in times like this when it seems like everything is being shaken, I am thankful I have something bigger than me, bigger than the Universe to anchor myself on. So I encourage you to begin to at least ask questions and begin to explore faith and spirituality.

I hope you have found this blog helpful. Please feel free to leave your comments. I would very much love to hear from you.

Remember if you say you can, you are right and if you say you can’t, you are right!

Mary Eniolu

Trainer, Speaker, Coach

www.icandoacademy.com

© 2020

 

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