18/12/2015

How To Be Less Anxious This Christmas


Hey everyone as you guys will already know if you have been reading my blog over a long period of time I suffer with Anxiety. To be more specific I also get panic attacks which aren't fun these mostly happen on public transport. However I can get them elsewhere. So for today's blog post I though I'd share with you my tips and tricks for keeping your anxiety level at a low 1-4 this Christmas instead of being a high 8-10.

Don't do something you don't want to
I can't stress this enough many times I have done something I wish I hadn't because I was feeling super anxious that day. Over the months I've taught myself to cancel things I don't want to do because my anxiety is high that day. There's nothing worse than turning up at an event or something when you're feeling at your worst. I have also learnt that my friends and family always understand when I cancel things because of my anxiety. The one thing they say to me is "nothing's more important than your health" and lets be realistic here anxiety is a healthy issue it's a mental health problem.

Ask questions
Before I have to do something like take a big test or go to a party for example I always ask loads of questions. I always find this helps to put my mind at ease as I'm then going into a situation I know more about instead of being thrown in at the deep end. For me when I can visualize things such as what the venue will look like or whether I'm going to be confined to a small space I feel more relaxed immediately. 

Some examples of questions that I usually ask are:
Who will be there? Do I know anyone going?
How big or small is the venue?
Is it a dark place?
Is there going to be lots of people?

Carry your safe things with you

When I mean safe things I mean things that I carry around with me to make me feel less anxious. For example, whenever I take public transport such as the train or bus I always have cold water, chewing gum, my earphones and a book with me. These things make me feel safer as I know that they are there if I need them. So my point being carry something around with you that makes you feel safe. Even if it's a packet of gum in your dress pocket or an app that you download especially for anxiety. 

People watch
One thing I like to do when I'm anxious is watch what is going on. I don't speak I just observe which I find rather relaxing. People watching is one of the things I love to do I mean I just find it so interesting to see how people interact with other people. I can't quite tell you why it calms me down but it just does watching and not saying anything reserves your energy in a way.

Have someone with you that you trust
Whenever I'm going to a new place or meeting new people the majority of the time I'd ask someone who I'm close with me to join me. This is because not only is it more fun to have people you have a good time with around you but it's also more relaxing for you. If I have my mum or close friends with me then I know that if I do have a panic attack they will be there to help me. For example, if I'm travelling to a new place with my mum she knows to leave with plenty of time in case we have to stop because I'm feeling panicky. 

Have an exit plan
This is our last resort and should only be used when your anxiety is a 10/10. I always like to have an exit plan as none of us know when our anxiety will go from a 3 to 10. It could all happen in the space of five minutes if the train gets super busy for example or the room gets super hot. So I always like to have a plan in case my anxiety rises to a 10. Whether this is the number of the local taxi service, a friend who is free to come and pick me up or even something simple such as a place I can go and relax if I do have a panic attack like a quiet room within the venue for example. 
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