Have you ever second-guessed yourself, questioning your words or actions? Many people place second-guessing at or near the top of their list of agonizing effects of anxiety. At best, it can knock down your sense of inner peace and happiness a notch or two. At worst, anxiously second-guessing our choices can cause us to berate ourselves relentlessly, unnecessarily assume blame, question whether we're good enough, and begin to pull away from a connected, active lifestyle. We don't have to let anxiety have this life-limiting and frustrating effect on us. Stop second-guessing and become self-assured in what you say and do.
Feeling anxious and busy--too busy--seems to be an epidemic. Feeling strapped for time negatively impacts a lot of lives. Sometimes this is a signal that big changes are needed; however, sometimes changing what is overwhelming is either impossible (at least immediately) or is undesirable ("busy" doesn't always mean "bad") There are ways to deal with anxiety and busyness without giving your life a major overhaul.
A few weeks ago, I outlined why I think American society causes anxiety. I want to revisit this topic again, but this time focus on one particular social plague: what Medium’s Gabriella Rackoff calls: "the cult of the entrepreneur."
Building a network for anxiety support can be an important part of overcoming anxiety. A support system of any type can empower you to take the necessary steps to overcome anxiety and create the quality life you want to live. When you have an anxiety support network on your side, it's comforting and can help you gather the courage to do what it takes to beat anxiety. As you build such a network, don't forget to include the most powerful support person of all: yourself.
Can we avoid holiday anxiety? After all, it’s ingrained in our culture that the holidays are a stressful time. It’s such a cliché that it seems as though every major holiday film and TV special, from "A Charlie Brown Christmas" to "Die Hard", is predicated on some kind of anxiety.
If you pause to listen to your anxiety, you might find that it has something helpful to say. Something called cognitive dissonance, a conflict within us, is a part of much of our anxiety no matter what type of anxiety we're dealing with. Together, these two forces can shout painfully at us, but behind the shouts is often a whisper of wisdom that, if we listen, we can use to quiet both cognitive dissonance and anxiety.
The myth of holiday suicide is one of the most stubborn myths related to mental illness. Because it’s now officially the holiday season, I want to take this opportunity to do my part to bust the most stubborn myth. Most of you have probably heard there is a significant increase in suicides during the holiday season; however, as the title of this post suggests, this is a myth. Suicide rates are actually lower than average during the holidays, with their peaks occurring in the spring and fall. While most people probably don’t think much of the myth, dismissing it as another old wives tale tenaciously hanging on to relevance, I’m much more disturbed by it, and feel the holiday suicide myth needs to be addressed with some degree of urgency.
Anxiety has a yin and a yang, which, when embraced, can help you find the balance that reduces anxiety. Originating from ancient Chinese philosophy, yin and yang are complementary forces, opposite but not oppositional. They are balancing energies that can at once both soothe and strengthen. Everything and everyone has yin and yang, including anxiety and its reduction. Anxiety's (and anxiety management's) yin and yang, its balancing forces, are acceptance and action. You can use acceptance and action to soothe your anxiety and move ahead into your quality life.
Holidays can be hard when you are living with anxiety and loneliness. Holidays can be stressful for anyone, but when you experience any type of anxiety, they're more difficult. Then, when you layer a sense of loneliness and isolation on top of anxiety, holidays can be quite upsetting. Anxiety can make you feel lonelier on a special day, and loneliness can exacerbate anxiety. Understanding what's going on with these misery-causing experiences can help you change your holidays for the better.
I’ve always been anxious about money. I suppose that doesn’t make me odd – it puts me in the mainstream. What does make me odd is that I’m anxious about money when there is absolutely no reason for me to be, and I fear it’s actively been detrimental to my wellbeing.