anxiety. a word i know all too well. as i’ve gotten older i noticed i was turning into a very anxious person. now naturally, i am a very loyal person. meaning anything i am apart of or whoever i have a relationship with, i take on those problems as my own to try and help figure them out. that has never really helped me personally because it just causes a great deal of anxiety in myself. and really for no reason. this past year, i’ve learned something though. no matter what is going on around me, whether it be at my job or with a close friend, i cannot control it. i can’t control what the outcome is. i can’t control how people act. whether i agree with decisions that are made or not. i cannot control it. and i’ve begun to realize that even though i can’t control it, i know that God can. remember one of my last posts? where i spoke about 2016 being the year i learned how to trust God? well here is where it comes in handy! times like these, when i sit back starting to get anxious about the situation that is going on around me. not trusting God but more becoming fearful about the future. that is the very opposite of what God wants from us.
that is the complete opposite of what i used to do. i used to hold things inside myself so tightly i would give myself anxiety attacks. one time i ended up going to the hospital because the pains were so bad. sitting in that hospital room made me realize that this isn’t worth it. holding on so tightly to something that i can just give to God isn’t worth my health. i began to start thinking of ways that can help me calm down every time i feel anxiety creep in. my purpose of writing this is 1) to be open and real about these kinds of issues but 2) to try and help you overcome any anxiety you may have too.
- go for a walk.
i found that my anxiety was rooted in my job. for you, it could be something else. but for me, the stress of work would control me. i was a workaholic because i wanted to be the very best at what i was doing. i wanted people to know that i was a hard worker. like i said before, not worth my health. now i find anytime that i’m feeling overwhelmed by a project or a meeting, i get up from my desk, and go for a walk. whether that is around the office or even around the campus outside. i have found that even sitting outside breathing in the fresh air has helped me tremendously.
this is not a word that i really like to be honest. ha! but it does help me so much to stay grounded and clear headed. plus because i’m sitting all day at work, its good to let some energy out. but what i’ve actually started doing is doing a little workout in my office. shhh, don’t tell anyone! when i start to feel a little anxious i stand up and do some stretches. i’ve even done squats! it really does help me to release that negative energy and refocus myself. especially when i have a lot of energy and i’m feeling anxious. not a good combo.
now, i personally love to put music on all the time when i work. but sometimes i’m not able to. especially when i have to make a lot of phone calls. when i do start to feel nervous and know that i can’t get up for a walk because i’m in the middle of something, i’ll put my favorite worship song or even dance song on. something that i know will calm me down and change my mood and attitude. if you love music, i would encourage you to have it on softly in the background while you work. it can really change the atmosphere of your office.
- reciting Proverbs 4:6 & prayer
this is a pretty easy one. i wrote this verse down on a post-it and put it on my desk. whenever i start to feel anxious, i recite it a few times to myself and pray. in that moment, i want to remind myself of what the Word of God says about anxiety. then i want to give it up to God. He is the only one that can really take away these burdens from me.
- deep breathing
i know it sounds silly but trust me, it works. sometimes i’ll just turn my chair to the window so i can see outside and take multiple deep breaths. most of the time after, i’ll close my eyes and take some more deep breaths.
- force yourself to smile
okay, so i know this sounds crazy and will make you feel stupid. but just try it! i end up forcing myself so much that i feel stupid and end up laughing at myself. laughing because i feel like i look so dumb that it makes me laugh!!
those are just 6 things that i have on rotation and let me tell you it really does help. being anxious over something you can’t control, which lets me honest is really everything, isn’t worth your health!! you need to tell yourself that and really believe it! it’s taken me a while, but i have learned to really trust in the Lord with anything that may come my way. do you?
don’t forget to download this image of proverbs-46 (click on the word to download). use it as a reminder for yourself whenever you’re feeling anxious! you can print it out for your desk or save it on your phone as your screen saver. enjoy!
leave a comment below on something you are struggling with that you want prayer for. lets pray for each other as a community through these issues. let’s lift each other up! xoxo
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