30 May How to Manage Anxiety: Practical Advice from Jenny West – Mehrer LMFT
Hey Guys- – I’m back yet again talking about ANXIETY. A few weeks back I shared with you my tips for breaking up with anxiety. But I wanted to bring in a true professional on the topic of anxiety, so we can really kick anxiety’s butt! My good friend Jenny Mehrer is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist here in San Diego, we’ve known each other since 9th grade and you guys she is such an amazing person and great at her job. She is here to give us her professional tips on how to manage anxiety… so let’s get into it!
Hi Everyone, Jenny Here— Anxiety is something that I spend most of my days learning about, working with and helping others (and myself) manage. It sure is powerful and we live in a society that creates an environment for it to grow. I want to highlight that it is important to remember that not ALL anxiety is bad. Anxiety often serves a purpose and, at times, can keep us safe and aware. To be honest, most of the time anxiety or worry can feel like too much. Here are a few quick tips to help manage anxiety when it becomes “too much.”
Jenny’s 5 Tips For Managing Anxiety
- Write it out: Whatever is on your mind, write it down. It does not have to make sense or be perfect, just get your thoughts (which are often rushing around) down on paper or in a note in your phone. Once your thoughts/worries/fears are written down, they often appear more manageable.
- Press pause: Set aside time to engage in 15-20 minutes of yoga, meditation or prayer. You can do this with or without the assistance of apps (Mycalmbeat and Mindshift are great). Youtube has a handful of great yoga videos and guided meditations.
- Practice self-care: Drink a cup of tea, take a bath, get a pedicure or message, go to bed early, sit in a cozy spot and read a book. Whatever you feel gives you a break and nourishes your soul, do it. Make it a priority. NOTE: Caffeine, alcohol and junk food can make anxiety worse so avoid “treating yourself” that way.
- Get moving: It is amazing what a quick 15-minute walk can do for your mood. If you have more time, try to get a 45-minute workout. If walking is not your thing, get moving in other ways. Go to a barre class, find a Zumba video on YouTube, lift weights or go for a swim. Any sort of activity will help improve your mood and release endorphins.
- Check yourself: After you engage in an activity that helps you calm down, check yourself. What triggered the anxiety? Are your thoughts and feelings accurate? Can you try a different approach to your worry? Sometimes it is helpful to talk it out with a trusted (and empathetic) friend or family member.
Sometimes anxiety (or depression or a feeling of being “off”) is not easily managed. If that is the case for you or someone you care about, I recommend seeking our professional help.