Do stress and anxiety rule your life? Are you always pessimistic no matter what happens? If you constantly live in the Prince Frog fairytale, but the prince turns back into a frog every time, keep reading. Life shouldn’t be like this, you deserve to give yourself the chance to enjoy it and see the bright side.Stress is a feeling of strain and pressure resulting from the different or demanding circumstance.
Stress triggers the secretion of adrenaline and cortisol hormones leading to the fight or flight or freeze response. It can be caused both by negative or positive causes which can throw us off our calm balance.
Stress is our body’s natural mechanism that helps us survive a threat. Primitive people had to face various and life-threatening circumstances, in their case, stress helped them survive. Wild animals could attack them, snakes could bite them while they were trying to hunt and find their food. Stress happened when they faced a real threat, contrary to what we experience today.
Let’s fast forward to today. Nowadays we don’t live in caves, wild animals can’t reach us, and we can pick up food from the supermarket whenever we feel like it. However, our stress levels have increased, and it is only getting worse.
Well no wonder, if you watch the evening news, you can only expect the world to end the following day. Not only that, social media have led us to believe that we are never good enough. Many people show off their material possessions, their looks, their careers, their perfect family, and the list goes on and on.
Even if the world doesn’t come to an end the following day, we can still feel miserable because everyone else is doing so perfect in their lives and we feel left behind. That leaves us stressed and wondering why is everyone else so right, and we are wrong all the time.
Then we have to face our everyday problems at work, in our relationship, with our children, our friends, our families… Then stress can lead to anxiety. Anxiety is mostly associated with the feeling of fear.
It is our way of interpreting our environment usually by believing we cannot control an outcome (fear of the unknown) and fearing about the consequences. Contrary stress is a reaction to circumstances that happen in our lives and throw us off our balance.
While stress and anxiety can be experienced by everyone, there is a point when crossed, it can lead to a disorder that needs to be treated. Anxiety disorders include panic attacks and various phobias.
Living with anxiety can make your life a living hell. Seeing a specialist is a necessity when every day becomes a struggle. When it comes down to psychological disorders, people don’t treat them as physical problems where they would go and see a specialist and treat it.
People often think that what they experience is natural, something is wrong with them and cannot be fixed. If you or anyone around you is feeling those emotions every day, then seek help right now. Since everyone is having stress and anxiety issues to some degree, here are some tips to include in your daily routine that can help you get in control of your emotions.
Take a breath, most of the things you fear of aren’t real. It’s all in your head
Don’t you think that sometimes we worry too much? What if I get late to that meeting? What if I fail the test? What if my plane crashes? What if my partner cheats on me? What if they realize I’m not good enough? Does this Armageddon rollercoaster sound familiar to you? Have you been to that amusement park also?
First of all, by worrying, you cannot solve problems. Feeling anxiety and interpreting the world around you in the most negative way can lead to nowhere. If you think that every step you take, takes you closer to distraction or death, that is totally wrong.
Life can be difficult, and everyone we meet might not like us, but that is how it is. If you expect everyone to love you, you should sell or preferably give away free ice-cream. Feeling anxiety about every single thing and trying to be “perfect” is making you miserable. How many times what you feared never happened?
Self-love, what we aren’t taught at school
When you look at the mirror, do you recognize the person that is looking back at you? Most of us live in our body but have no clue about who we are. We don’t know, don’t like and don’t love ourselves. We are a stranger to ourselves.
If you think I’m over exaggerating then think of how low self-esteem most of us have. Our anxiety is caused by the fear of what others and the world around us think we are. Have you ever had these kinds of thoughts: your partner might cheat on you because you aren’t good enough, you think you aren’t qualified to get a better job, everyone around you looks better than you and have a better and more exciting life than you.
Stop treating yourself like that, you don’t deserve this. Anxiety is caused because you feel that you have to be the perfect version of yourself to survive. Love yourself and learn who you are and what you want. Don’t try to please everyone.
Is the glass half-full or half-empty?
The way we interpret the world around us can make a huge difference. If I ask you if the glass is half empty or half-full, what is your answer? Before you reveal your pessimistic personality, let me challenge you. The question isn’t about how we see the world, is about how we to choose to see the world.
The glass is in reality filled till the middle, it isn’t good or bad, it is just an ordinary glass with water that can quench your thirst. When you want to be perfect, you want the glass to be filled up to the top with water. However, if you think about it, nothing will ever make you happy if your mind is used to seeing what is lacking in your life.
You will probably assume that a glass of water isn’t enough for you. Having this mindset will only make you miserable and boost your stress levels up to the roof. See everything that you have in your life and feel grateful.
Keep a gratitude journal and write down every day about the things you’re thankful for, your health, your family, your friends, and all the things that you take for granted.
Find solutions to your problems
Take a piece of paper and write down what is the issue that brings you anxiety. Create two columns on the left side, describe the situation. Be as objective as possible and don’t let your emotions get in the way. On the right side, write down the worst outcome, make your pessimistic version party.
Then read aloud both columns. I am sure when you’ll hear yourself read aloud the right column, you will laugh at yourself. Let’s go through an example.
Now write down a third column of what you can do to prepare yourself for that talk. Practice your speech in front of the mirror, record a video of yourself, rewrite the speech in a way that suits your way of talking, keep a card with the most essential parts of your talk in case you forget something.
Perfectionism is making you imperfect
Are you a perfectionist? Do you think that is good for you? Perfectionism can boost anxiety through the roof. If you continuously try to control the outcome and expect to be perfect, then you’ll become miserable. From the mundane tasks as keeping your house clean, if you want it to be like that all the time, then you should never enter it.
People live in their homes, and that means that everything cannot be in their place all the time. Even at our job, some projects are perfect, others kind of and others just suck.
Not every day is the same, not everything reaches perfectionism. That doesn’t mean that you have to be average or not try to excel in something but know where to stop torturing and beating yourself up.
Learn to love your mistakes
In school, you learned to see your mistakes as flaws. If you didn’t get the right answers to the quiz, you were immediately considered as a poor student. Mistakes are a taboo and stigma, a lack of intelligence or talent.
Only successful people keep trying, no matter how many times they fail. That is why, when growing up, we refuse to take risks. Why start a business of our own when we can fail?
But did you ever think that when we are learning a new skill, we succeed many many times before we become good at it? Babies when learning to walk they fall down a million times. Do they give up or think that they aren’t good enough?
On the opposite, they try even harder as if there is nothing that can stop them. That is why they succeed. When they fail, they don’t think it’s the end of the world.
Read biographies of successful people
If you think that successful people have different DNA or are from another planet, you are wrong. We admire them, respect them, and believe that they magically woke up one day and became famous. Reading biographies can give you a glimpse of their lives from the beginning, the problems they had to face, and the rejections before they ended up becoming what we know.
Walt Disney was fired because he didn’t have a good imagination and wasn’t talented. Oprah Winfrey was fired because she was dull and stiff on air. Albert Einstein didn’t speak till he was four, learned to write when he was seven and got expelled from school.
The difference between these people is that they never gave up and didn’t let anyone or anything stand in their way. Believe in yourself that is a valuable lesson in life. Problems never disappear, and the path doesn’t get easier. It is we who become stronger.
Learn to relax
If you get stressed all the time, you should find ways to relax and reduce the stress levels. There is no magic formula you should experiment and discover what suits you. It should be something you enjoy. Try yoga, meditation, massage, listening to music you love or whatever you like.
Additionally, what will benefit you is to incorporate exercise in your daily routine. Lift weights, try aerobics, spin class, kickboxing just something that will move your body. When exercising our body produces endorphins, the feel-good neurotransmitters that will improve your mood.
Also having a balanced diet can benefit your mood. Avoid sugar, coffee, alcohol, and processed foods. Whatever you do, no matter how things turn out, keep a positive mindset. Realize that you’re not the center of the universe and you don’t have a spotlight that is always chasing you.
If you fail at something you can try again, if people disappoint you, you can meet new people. Don’t think that others will judge you and you aren’t good enough.
“When you’re 20, you care what everyone thinks.
When you’re 40, you stop caring what everyone thinks.
When you’re 60, you realize no one was ever thinking about you in the first place.”
Winston S. Churchill