Letting Go of Anxiety

Anxiety: worry, concern, apprehension, uneasiness, fear, agitation, angst, nervousness, tension. Anxiety: an awful state of being that encompasses our very being -- mind, feelings, actions. The Mayo Clinic describes it as “intense, excessive and persistent worry and fear about everyday situations." Many of us live with it; few, if any, of us want it. What do we do about it?

As you may already be aware, there are many, many ways to approach the treatment of anxiety. Vanquishing anxiety from our lives is a process that requires patience and persistence. Some very effective treatments are rather complex. The good news, though, is that anxiety can indeed diminish.One of anxiety's traps is that it makes us worry, but worry makes anxiety worse, so worry more. Letting go of what makes us anxious reduces anxiety.

Wouldn't be wonderful to live as The Dali Lama describes? He tells us, “Inner peace is the key. If you have inner peace, the external problems do not affect your deep sense of peace and tranquility. In that state of mind you can deal with situations with calmness and reason, while keeping your inner happiness.”

This state of peace is attainable. While there are no “quick fixes” when it comes to overcoming anxiety, there absolutely are simple things that, when practiced intentionally and regularly, go a long way in calming anxiety so we can live a life free from anxiety's strangling hold. Once such thing is letting go.

In this video, I talk about the idea of letting go to reduce anxiety.

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APA Reference
Peterson, T. (2014, April 23). Letting Go of Anxiety, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, July 18 from

Author: Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC, DAIS

Tanya J. Peterson is the author of numerous anxiety self-help books, including The Morning Magic 5-Minute Journal, The Mindful Path Through Anxiety, 101 Ways to Help Stop Anxiety, The 5-Minute Anxiety Relief Journal, The Mindfulness Journal for Anxiety, The Mindfulness Workbook for Anxiety, and Break Free: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy in 3 steps. She has also written five critically acclaimed, award-winning novels about life with mental health challenges. She delivers workshops for all ages and provides online and in-person mental health education for youth. She has shared information about creating a quality life on podcasts, summits, print and online interviews and articles, and at speaking events. Tanya is a Diplomate of the American Institution of Stress helping to educate others about stress and provide useful tools for handling it well in order to live a healthy and vibrant life. Find her on her website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

May, 2 2014 at 3:39 pm

One thing that i have learnt that has kept me going is to remember that thoughts are not fact, and so when the mind start to wonder i remember this, also you have to learn to be patient with yourself and time is the best healer

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

May, 4 2014 at 11:44 am

Hi Althea,
Both of these comments are incredibly wise, and I'm so glad you shared them with everyone here. The idea that thoughts are not fact is a tough thing to grasp because it seems weird -- how can our thoughts not be fact? But it's true! You're right. Part of getting rid of anxiety involves noticing our thoughts and really examining them and challenging the truth of them. Once reason anxiety is so powerful and controlling is that it plays tricks on our minds. It puts thoughts in our heads that aren't accurate. Understanding that goes a long way toward beating those inaccurate thoughts. And of course that takes time. Time -- and the distance it brings -- is indeed a powerful healer.

April, 26 2014 at 10:28 am

I read somewhere that you should put your worries in an imaginary suitcase and leave it where you put it. I've found that it helps, but every once in a while I still pick the darn thing up. It's part of anxiety, and not always easy to cope with, but you're right letting go can bring calmness into a situation.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

April, 27 2014 at 11:56 am

Hi Cindyaka,
Imagery is powerful, and I love that one. I hadn't heard of the suitcase image, and I'm glad you shared it. It's great for both things you mentioned: we have the ability and control to pack our anxieties away in a case and put it down; and it's realistic to realize that sometimes we do pick it up. And we can also repack it and put it back down again! Thanks for sharing this.

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