Four coping techniques for when you feel anxious

3 min read
31 January 2019

It has always been a constant worry of mine that something, somehow is going to go wrong.

But sometimes I guess that’s just the way it is. I get a lot of questions along the lines of ‘what’s worrying you?’ but honestly most of the time I don’t really know.

Coping with anxiety is difficult, so I’ve tried to compose a list of things that I do to make my life slightly less stressful.

1. Find something to look forward to

Doing something that you enjoy is a good way of taking your mind off of things. I get anxiety over things that may not even happen, and so having things in my life that I enjoy doing reduces the amount I worry. You need to find a reasonably stress-free activity that requires all your attention and will stop you from thinking about other things. Sitting doing nothing allows my mind to wonder and eventually leads to a panic!

Having things in my life that I enjoy doing reduces the worries that I get.

2. Find a way to get the worries out

Finding a physical way to get your worries into the open can really help. When struggling to revise once, I asked a teacher for any good ideas and they told me to physically imagine the information entering my brain. I’ve found that imagining my anxious thoughts physically leaving my brain and floating off into the sky really helps me. Of course, this isn’t the only way you can get your worries into the open; I also list my thoughts on a piece of paper, before ripping them up and throwing them away.

Imagining my anxious thoughts physically leaving my brain.

3. Share your struggles with people you trust

I see a counsellor at my school every two weeks to discuss my problems. However, sometimes appointments can be difficult to arrange. It’s worth speaking to your school nurse or GP if you are really struggling. Most of the time though, talking to a friend or an adult that you trust can really help. There is no point struggling alone. Someone will always care about you, and no one wants you to struggle if they can help you.

Talking to a friend or an adult that you trust can really help.

4. Stop and focus on breathing

Sometimes all you need to do is stop and focus on your breathing. I have learned many techniques over my time in counselling, and finding one that works for you is important. If you look up ‘calming breathing techniques’ you’ll be able to find many of your own. I breathe in for seven seconds and out for 11 seconds, which just helps me to stop and focus.

I breathe in for seven seconds and out for 11 seconds.

These are the main techniques that I use to cope with my anxiety. You always have high points and low points, good days and bad days, and learning to cope requires practice.  You will reach a point, through using the right coping techniques and speaking to someone you trust, when the things that you worry about get less frequent, and the anxiety you get becomes less of a monster and more of a partner that you work with.

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Thanks for sharing your story Georgie

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