Declare Independence from Your Anxiety, Celebrate Freedom

If you're tired of living in anxiety's limiting trap, declare independence from your anxiety and then celebrate your freedom. Anxiety is controlling and cruel, ensnaring people in its trap and dictating thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. If you're trying to live your life but find yourself repeatedly thwarted by the anxiety that rules your thoughts, emotions, and actions, you have the right and the power to break free. 

The Declaration of Independence is one of the United States' main guiding principles. Written in 1776, it is the official announcement to the King of England that the colonies no longer accepted his authority. Now, anxiety is the oppressive ruler that limits our freedom. You are the author of your own declaration of independence.

To Gain Freedom from Anxiety, You Have to Declare It

A declaration is more than a mere statement. It's a statement, yes, but one loaded with intent and purpose. It's a promise and commitment to yourself that you aren't going to live under anxiety's rule. It's the first action to take when you've had it with anxiety in your life. 

A declaration is bold. When you're breaking your ties with your ruler, use these guidelines:

  • Don't ask for permission.
  • Don't whisper timidly. 
  • Use a strong, unwavering voice.
  • Look at yourself in the mirror, stand tall, and declare your intent to break from anxiety.
  • Repeat it to your pets and pillows to gain strength and confidence.
  • Declare it to important people in your life for support.

Like the US Declaration of Independence, you can add statements and principles to yours. List the facts about your anxiety: how it's oppressing you and limiting your life, what it's doing to your relationships, and how it's interfering in the life you want and your ability to live for what you value. Some examples of what you might include in your own declaration:

  • Anxiety is a self-important bully. I won't give it any more power. I have the right to walk away.
  • Anxiety interferes in my inherent right to happiness; I will choose my own emotions and attitude--and happiness.
  • Anxiety keeps me away from people; I don't want that, and I'll reach out to one person this week to start. 
  • Anxiety makes me sick; I will take back my body.
  • Anxiety has me locked in a prison; I'm strong enough, smart enough, and motivated enough to break free.

Celebrate Your Declaration of Independence from Anxiety

Create a real declaration of independence from anxiety. Use a computer, a notebook, a special journal--whatever you can embrace and what is pleasing to you. Include statements and facts and principles delineating why you are kicking anxiety to the curb. It's a promise to yourself, a letter of intent, so be bold and confident. 

When you have your official document declaring your freedom from anxiety, celebrate. Treat yourself. Watch a favorite movie. Buy a plant. Give yourself flowers. Celebrating reinforces your decision to take action to free yourself, and it peps you up for the next stage, the process of digging in and working to separate yourself from your anxiety. (In US history, the Declaration was written first and the war came second because the King wouldn't let go so quickly. Your anxiety won't go without a fight, either.) 

Freedom from anxiety begins with belief. Believe you can do it. Believe you deserve it. Declare your intent. Take action, break free, and keep celebrating. 

APA Reference
NCC, T. (2019, July 4). Declare Independence from Your Anxiety, Celebrate Freedom, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, August 20 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/anxiety-schmanxiety/2019/7/declare-independence-from-your-anxiety-celebrate-freedom



Author: Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC

Tanya J. Peterson is the author of The Mindfulness Journal for Anxiety, The Mindfulness Workbook for Anxiety, Break Free: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy in 3 steps, and five critically-acclaimed, award-winning novels about mental health challenges. She speaks nationally about mental health, and she has a curriculum for middle and high schools. Find her on her website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Lizanne Corbit
says:
July, 7 2019 at 9:12 pm
I love the idea of a bold declaration. I would say that it could be a very powerful thing to declare a totally different relationship with anxiety, where you decide the terms of your arrangement. Anxiety can be like guidelines, a helper, and a teacher, but not if we're giving it full domain. So empowering to remind ourselves that we are always the ones with the power. Anxiety can take a back seat.
July, 10 2019 at 4:06 pm
Thank you, Lizanne. You make a great point: anxiety truly can guide, help, and teach us things about ourselves, where we want to go, and what a life with significantly less anxiety means to us personally. That's an important component that is often overlooked. You're right, too, that we do have the power and are the ones in charge -- not anxiety.

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