How I cope with anxiety…
It’s important for me to mention that I am not a doctor, a professional, or anyone you should be seeking medical advice from. I’m just here to talk about what helps me cope with my anxiety. I don’t remember when I first started to have anxiety but what I do know is that I struggled to cope with it for a very long time so basically, all I am here to do is to tell you how I cope with anxiety.
I feel like there are not enough words to describe anxiety, or at least my anxiety because yes, I do feel like I can’t breathe, it does feel like the world is crumbling, my heart does race, but I feel so much more than these stereotypical feelings.
My anxiety can appear in a variety of ways
I get nervous, speechless, agitated, nauseous, I cry, I eat, my hands will tingle sometimes, on a really rough day I can feel darkness or color. The color aspect may be a part of PTSD triggers that I have but a lot of my PTSD coincides with anxiety. Sometimes I can feel all of these things at one time or I will only have one or two symptoms. Anxiety does not discriminate and it is so important to be able to cope with it. Depending on how I am feeling depends on how I cope with anxiety, coping mechanisms really need to be personalized for them to be effective. Sometimes I will wake up anxious and have to determine the best way to control my anxiety so I can go about my day without feeling like I have a dark cloud over me.
Coping mechanisms should be tailored to what feels best & works best for you
I personally can not stand aromatherapy diffusers but it works for some people! Basically what I am trying to say is if you don’t feel comfortable with something then just keep moving on and trying different things. There are thousands of ways to cope with anxiety.
- As previously mentioned, I have PTSD and am still working on coping mechanisms for that specifically but what I have found is that a weighted pillow helps me cope both with PTSD & anxiety. My therapist makes these cute heart-shaped pillows and adds some weight to them with beads (I think?)… I want to guesstimate and say that the pillow weighs only 3ish pounds. I have found that if I wake up with anxiety, putting the pillow on my stomach really helps me with breathing and calming down. Also, I have a really hard time sleeping and will get super overwhelmed before bed so I try to keep the pillow near my bed for easy access.
- Poetry books – specifically Robert M. Drake. I don’t know what it is but I can not read a book to calm me down, I just will not process any of it, butttttttt… I am so happy to have found RMD’s poetry books because they truly are so relatable – at least I think they are. Sometimes I will only read one or two poems and can feel my heart beat slow down. I love RMD, I highly suggest checking his work out.
- Oh, the famous coloring books… I have a love-hate relationship with coloring books. Depending on my anxiety, these can really help me and distract me from my thoughts (anxiety thoughts can be so toxic!!), but at the same time, I hate coloring books because I can never stay in the lines or finish an entire piece because it can get very tedious in my opinion. But hey, if they work at times then its worth it to keep them around.
- Music, music, music…. I am super particular when it comes to music and how it impacts my mood. I will not listen to music if I am sad because personally music can be extremely triggering when it comes to PTSD. I can’t stand when I am with friends and they want to listen to music because it makes me itch when I am not in control of what I am listening to… it’s weird, I guess if you don’t know what I am talking about then I might sound crazy, but I know I can’t be the only one who is heavily impacted by music… anyway, How I cope with anxiety is by listening to jazz & blues music. My favorite artists are Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, B.B King… the list goes on and on.
Also, something different – possibly weird?? that helps me cope with those anxious feelings is to pace… when I am feeling anxious I cannot sit still. So thankfully, I have found pacing to be super helpful when trying to subdue those unwanted feelings.
These are just some of the ways that I manage my anxiety, be sure to let me know how you cope with anxiety!
Thank you for KUWK – Be sure to connect with me on instagram !
“Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom” – Soren Kierkegaard