Action Anxiety Day Toolkit
June 10 is recognized as Action Anxiety Day in Canada to raise awareness for anxiety worldwide. Despite its prominence in society and in affecting the lives of many, a constant stigma continues to circulate around anxiety and seeking help.
Angela Prosser, a registered social worker in the outpatient mental health and addictions program (MSW, RSW) at Humber River Hospital has shared her toolkit for taking action against anxiety.
Anxiety is a natural emotion that is necessary for survival. It is normal to feel anxious. Do not criticize yourself for it. Be curious about it and strive to understand it more. Be kind to yourself if you are feeling anxious and know that these uncomfortable feelings will pass.
Consider the way you think.
Often with anxiety, we overestimate bad outcomes and underestimate our ability to cope with them. Be realistic about your situation and consider your strengths. Can you think in a more helpful or balanced way about the situation?
Face your fears.
If you are avoiding things that make you anxious, consider setting small goals to work towards facing these fears. Avoidance only makes anxiety stronger!
Schedule worry time.
Set aside a specific time of day to worry and do that for no more than 30 minutes. When worry comes up at other times in the day, make a note of it, but distract from it until your scheduled worry time. With practice, scheduling worry time can help you spend less time worrying about things out of your control and more time enjoying life.
Take time out from your busy day to slow down. Schedule time to do a pleasant activity each day that calms and relaxes you. Practice mindfulness, use meditation, and/or deep breathing in your day.
Take care of your body.
In order to best help your nervous system, it is important to ensure that you are eating regularly, taking in fluids, and prioritizing your sleep schedule.
Move your body.
Research shows that exercise is helpful in reducing anxiety.
Please speak to your doctor and/or a mental health professional/therapist if you are struggling with your anxiety. The approach of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is an evidence based treatment shown to be effective in addressing anxiety. Do not be afraid to seek support if you are struggling. Know that you can learn ways to cope with your anxiety and feel better!
To learn more about coping with your anxiety and for additional resources visit, www.anxietycanada.com.
Note: This post is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be utilized as medical advice or instruction.