Anxiety is something that has taken over and ruled my life from a very young age, I’ve tried many methods to rid myself of it or lesson the effects and hold that it has on me. There was a time I wasn’t able to leave my house, frozen by anxiety with even the thought of going near a door that lead to the outside world, loosing friends, feeding my depression and making my health both mental and physically terrible.
I’m so happy to say that’s no longer my life. I still suffer from sever anxiety and depression but I am now able to leave the house from time to time for shopping, going out somewhere with my boyfriend and friends, I’m now able to do what I used to love doing most when I was a child (beside climbing and writing), taking walks through nature and exploring old area’s. I know have some control back over my life.
Some techniques have worked where other have failed, none of them have be able to rid me of this however a few techniques have helped me through the worst of my anxiety.
I thought I’d ask the wonderful people on twitter what tricks/ techniques they use to help deal or cope with their anxiety while outside and here were they responses:
Exposure therapy. Smelling lavender oil. I have pills if it gets really bad but my goal is to never have to take them again. – @girl_importance
Oftentimes I’m anxious about failure and disappointment. I tell myself it’s okay if I fail, or if I mess up. Life is too short to be distracted from happiness by success/failure. I have to keep reminding myself to be present with myself, or else I’m quick to forget. – @AGPetersen2
Diaphragmatic breathing. –@MorbidParamour
I now feel better, but I suffered PTSD and… the only way I found was to write…It did help. – @KaceyKells
When I start overthinking everything on the earth in my life I take a nap. Not the best advice for serious anxiety but it’s like a little reset button. – @AllieVegas
Make sure I always have some backup little things to ground me. Peppermint, soft-mints, eg, which helps calm guts going into hyper-drive when I’m getting anxious. And I feel an attack coming on, have some safe place songs on my phone & quick free flow writing on my phone notepad. So a lot of stupid little things like that really. So if you have anything you make a routine out of when recovering from an anxiety attack, make a portable equivalent. Also recinnebd Fearne Cotton’s Calm book. There’s techniques in there that have been life changing for me! –@Chromosoner
I always found that asking myself this question help to disrupt the anxious thoughts and get you back to being present when you can enjoy the day you’re having. ‘What, at this moment, is lack?’ Think about it deeply and look around at what you’re doing. Bonus tip; Write ‘NOW’ in biro on your finger or hand. Then every time you see it throughout the day, you’ll be reminded to ask the question. –
I have started using breathing to help control my anxiety. 4 Seconds in, 7 seconds hold and 8 seconds out. I repeat that until I begin to feel better. It works sometimes, other times it’s a struggle. – @Nyxiesnook
Deep breathing to keep calm – @PagePlacePlate
Trace The image of a square in your head. Breath in for 4 second as you are imagining drawing the top line of the square, hold your breath for 4 seconds as you trace the vertical line down, release breath for 4 as you trace the bottom horizontal line, then hold for 4 seconds. – @Katyroseblogs
I find relaxation helps but mainly practised indoors and regularly to start with. Mindfulness also helps, in my experience. – @Steheadspace
Yoga, Music, Aromatherapy, muscle relaxation. – @Just_Jess_18
My way of coping with my anxiety disorder was to stop fighting my intrusive thoughts and just allow them to run their course. They lost a lot of power over me once I started doing that. – @UnwantedLife_Me
Breaking everything up into time chunks helps me a bunch. – @Valkyriesblog
I would count as many things that I could see that were a specific colour, so how many things can I see, something blue etc. – @RebeccaJGibson
Deep breathing. Affirmations. Visual boards (on my phone/online) – @adwaita_one
Stopping and looking into the distance for something like a tree and then gazing at it with soft eyes and notice what you can see to left and right of the tree without moving your eyes to focus on them. It’s a great technique and distracts you. – @VampybearClick their user names to be directed straight to their twitter accounts!
For me I haven’t been able to find anything that really works for me. I still struggle to leave the house, I’m always with a friend, family member or I usually have my boyfriend by my side talking me through any anxiety attacks that I may get when being outside. He has helped in teaching me to control my breathing at times for the short period of times I am outside on my own for whatever reason so I don’t go into a panic attack.
I also use the Alphabet to control my anxiety during those rare moments I am out alone, repeatedly going through the alphabet in my head until I reach my destination. And I count my step when walking or try thinking about the book I’m currently reading, I try and do anything I can think of that can help take my mind off being outside.
I hope that these tips from other’s who suffer anxiety can maybe help you from time to time. Remember that everyone anxiety levels are different, sometimes it worse for others where it isn’t for some. And not every tip or trick is going to help you, everyone is different and what works for some people may not work for others. That doesn’t mean you are worse off, or can’t be helped. It just means you need to keep trying out different technique that can help you.
If there is anything you’d like to add or have something that wasn’t mention on here please leave it in the comments below, I’d love to hear what helps you! I will also be doing a follow up post on this, adding in any new comments/techniques that you leave in the comment section.
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