Are You Experiencing Anxiety (10 Tips To Help You Cope)

Did you know that 40 million adults in the U.S. suffer from anxiety? And 25 percent of children suffer from an anxiety disorder (Anxiety and Depression Association of America).

Anxiety can be so limiting, frustrating, scary, and overwhelming. I have dealt with it for years not initially recognizing what it was and how much it has affected my life. Yet, I serve a mighty God despite what anxiety may say. This may be a process and it may be day by day, step by step, but I will overcome. As I grow and heal as well as learn to trust God, I am also learning to cope with anxiety.

And this year has brought on more stress. So, I am sure more people are feeling anxious. People who have suffered from anxiety prior to the pandemic, you may be even more anxious. So, how do we cope with anxiety?

10 Ways To Cope With Anxiety (These are not in a specific order)

1. When you are anxious, don’t fight what you are physically feeling, don’t try to pause the pain, or suppress your emotions. Often times when I was anxious or having an anxiety attack, I would try and fight it with the intent to hurry and make it go away. But it would only make me feel worse. You are trying to fight your anxiety attack from rising when your body is already in fight or flight mode. Sounds crazy don’t it but I would do just that. After finding such tip on another google search and practicing it, I found not fighting it helped me to calm down much more effectively and quicker than it would have fighting it. Sometimes, we try to avoid what we feel. Feel it. Then take a deep breath and release it.

2. Rest. Don’t just take naps. But for people who are constantly busy and rarely take naps, every now and then we need to incorporate nap time. Get some sleep. I realized my lack of sleep or lack of quality of sleep also triggers my anxiety. Even lack of healthy eating and lack of eating adequate meals can trigger anxiety. Ok so back to rest. Pause to pray and play. Enjoy the moment. Embrace the present. Catch up on self-care, family time, organizing and even doing some things God has laid on your heart to do that you have wanted to do for awhile. Rest means pausing to be productive and present.

3. Practice deep breathing. I am still learning how to properly do this but it helps to tell your body to calm down by releasing adequate oxygen in your body through your blood and a calm order to your brain. And it is helping. It lets me tell my body “ok, I feel you.” “Im paying attention. We are going to be okay.”

4. Watch something funny and laugh daily. Mass consumption of reading and watching videos of what’s going on right now can be unhealthy. I was reading something recently about a new rare symptom or so in kids getting Covid and I could feel my eyesight get blurry and head start to hurt. It was overwhelming. Fear is increasing in the land. God did not give us a spirit of fear but that of power, love and a sound mind. So, remember that and laugh away. Laughter has been a good distraction and great medicine.

5. Pray and read the Word of God. His Word is alive and active. God’s promises and Word still stand. He is God Almighty and the prayers of the righteous availeth much. Keep praying. Keep reading His Word. I will read His Word and God will pinpoint something to pray regarding a situation. Let us involve God in every area of our lives. He cannot fail. He will not fail.

6. Take one day at a time. Don’t worry about tomorrow. You are not there yet. Focus on today. Don’t rush the process. And trust God one day at a time. Be patient. Be patient with yourself. Be patient with others. Be patient with God after all He is patient with us.

7. Practice self-care and add it to your calendar if you have to. You’d be surprise how some people with anxiety are consumed with worry and meeting the needs of others that they tend to neglect their own care. And sometimes it isn’t the physical care they neglect, but the mental and emotional care.

8. Get therapy and seek God. It is okay to get therapy. Talking with someone who is neutral, is not directly involved in your pain and personal business, and is trained in guiding you towards self-awareness, identifying the trauma and guiding you to solutions as well as identifying choices you have to heal and move forward is a great resource and support. Moreover, seek God, for His wisdom is not of this world. He created you and first loved you so He has, and knows, and wants what is best for you. He has the solutions you need. And He wants you to be free from the spirit of fear.

9. Do your healing homework. What triggers your anxiety? Why are you worried? Upon prayer and the Holy Spirit’s counsel, I found that a particular workplace was one of my anxiety triggers. I was then able to pray concerning such and delve deeper as to why I would feel anxious there and begin the work to have a better experience in that environment. Things changed and you know what, the change started in me first. I had to learn to see the people in this environment the way God did. I had to, well am still learning to, learn to see myself the way God sees me also.

10. Learn effective coping techniques. What are some things you can do to manage your stress and anxiety? What are some things you like to do to relax or have fun? Are they healthy and effective? Like listening to some good old music. I know someone told me they have been listening to Stevie Wonder. I listen to 90’s music and sometimes just worship music. Sometimes, I watch funny things like a comedy sketch. Laughter is good medicine as I mentioned before. I love taking walks. I journal sometimes. I also take time to acknowledge how I feel. Being transparent with myself and others helps me as well as others. Moreover, I am learning to be more transparent with God. Not that He doesn’t know, but sharing the matters of your heart with God is refreshing and empowering. Reading books. Cooking. Sharing a meal with family and friends. Helping someone else helps take your mind off of you for a short while and blessing someone else blesses you. I also have recently started praying in tongues more in the morning. I wake up a lot of mornings with anxiety so praying in tongues and worshiping God has been a great help. It takes my mind off of me and puts it back on God.


What are other ways one can cope with anxiety?


Disclaimer: I am not a therapist or expert on anxiety. These are merely tips from research and from my own experience and are not intended to cure, treat, or diagnose medical conditions.

Use This Time Wisely

Many of us are enduring reopening phases as well as quarantine during this pandemic. It hasn’t been easy but for the most part, we have made adjustments to how we do things from our careers to education. Nonetheless, this pandemic has served much stress, loss, anxiety, uncertainty and hardships. Yet, many are still holding on despite the turmoil from Covid-19 and even the many issues, like racism and gun violence, that are now on the forefront of our current society that people are waiting and fighting for to finally be addressed.

As in one hand chaos and turmoil increase in the world and in another hand the world slows down. We are left to understand that we can’t approach life as we have been. We may have to make some adjustments that are deep within and that will prepare us for the next season. We may have to reevaluate how we were living before this time. Rediscover some goals and dreams. Realize that God can use this time for our good and He can help us use this time wisely.

Were you burned out prior to the quarantine? Were you in need of some quality time with your family? Did you have a business or foundation that has been on your heart to start? How about following through with writing or face timing a person God has laid on your heart to reach out to remind them God cares? Did you want to finally get healthy mentally and physically? Did you need to learn a second language? Did you need to let go of some things and some relationships? Did you need to get your bank account healthy? Did you need to finally deal with some pain and trauma? Did you need to strengthen your prayer life and faith walk? How about learning patience and trusting God?

Prior to the quarantine, shutdown, Pandemic, I was burned out. Overwhelmed and anxiety through the roof. I had some things I needed to deal with, boundaries to set, and goals to accomplish. One of those goals was to build my trust in God. And I also desired to have more quality time with God in prayer, His Word and presence. Other goals were simply to cook more, be more present with my family, write more, work on and eventually release my book. I also wanted to practice more self-care. I needed more self-care.

Using my time wisely and accomplishing these goals haven’t been easy and I am far from perfectly disciplined, if there is such a thing. However, by the grace of God, I have come to grow in these areas and accomplish some of my goals. I give glory to God because He not only knows what I need and what those around me need, but He works all things for my good.

I have been cooking more, making sweets and dishes such as cheesecakes, brownies, shrimp and chicken alfredo and more.

I love food and I love cooking and sharing my cooking moments and meals with family have been great.

I finished my book; praise God, and I am enjoying again taking photos of nature. I have also been tackling fear and anxiety by being vulnerable with God, prayer, His Word and grace.

Additionally, I’m learning to rest, spiritually, in the Lord and naturally to replenish and refuel. Walking with family, movie nights, and having pool time or errand runs have helped me to be present with family. I also sought a bit of therapy and started back journaling. God told me a while ago to reprioritize and organize my life. I wish I had started this mission before all of this but it is not too late.

God first and foremost and then everyone and everything else shall fall in their proper place. Learning to trust God and set boundaries will also help me to get some order in my life. Letting the Holy Spirit lead me and doing things with purpose and simplicity in mind will also help. Lastly, I aim to continue with strengthening my faith walk and love walk.

To conclude, I don’t know your goals or what God is calling you to do. I don’t know what you need to heal from, what things you need to part ways from and who you need to turn you attention back to. But I do know that you still have time today right now to choose to use your time wisely and set the stage for God to lead the way in your life. To choose to go deeper in the things of God and dwell in His presence like never before.

To choose to receive the life and life to the full Jesus came to give us as well as receive God’s unfailing love. To choose to live simply, fruitfully and purposefully. Prepare now and pray more. Rest while you can. Ask God to teach you to trust Him and rebuild your life on the foundation of His Son. Seasons will change. Prepare for the next season. Learn from this one and do all that you are supposed to do in this one.


Put Your Shoes On Honey,

Our journey awaits,

Tannika

Self-Care: Capturing Memories & Moments

Not too long ago, my therapist gave me an assignment. It was to take time each day to do some thing for fun and for myself. Upon attempting to complete this assignment, I realized and noted in my journal that I couldn’t fully identify what was fun for me. I enjoy cleaning and especially before I can relax. I know, it sounds crazy. I do enjoy writing; however, I struggle with writer’s block here and there and I don’t write daily like I used to unless it is a to do list. I use to have things I enjoyed doing, but now I couldn’t really answer what I like to do for fun. Making a consistent effort to take time to do something I truly enjoy has been a struggle. I also seem to race against time to slow down and just be present. I have found though that in order to continue providing the care for my family and fulfill my work and many other obligations, I have to first care for my relationship with God and then my relationship with myself. And one of the ways I provide that care for myself is to do something I enjoy.

As I turned my attention back to a project I had been working on for some time, I began browsing through photos I had taken to add to it. And it dawned on me that photography was something I enjoy. I am not a pro and I only had one photography class in college when I was an art and design student. Yet, I still enjoy capturing memories and moments. I also love nature and love capturing God’s art and handiwork.

So, I as I browsed through photos and realized my love for photography, I told myself I will continue taking shots of beautiful skies and landscapes and more. It is also a simple way of taking time for myself. Taking time for yourself is crucial. Having a hobby, and not just a hobby but a healthy one, is important also. Moreover, it is imperative to refresh yourself and rest. Rest isn’t just sometimes being still or taking a nap. It is about doing something you love and actually being productive. It is about being present and trusting God to manage the universe He created while you breathe in His ability to take care of you and your family. It is about taking a break to reprioritize.

Some things I have also been doing are now intentional to provide myself some fun and some self-care. I have been walking my dog; I love walking and I enjoy my new best friend. I recently polished my finger nails and toe nails as well as watched one of my favorite shows. I made one of my favorite desserts, a strawberry cheesecake, in which my nephew filmed and interviewed me like we were creating our own cooking show. And we also binge-watched Nailed It. All of these things I am realizing did bring me some joy. I also had to recently make me a priority after feeling so overwhelmed, log off the computer, and be okay with not getting to every thing on my to do list. And I will continue to make time to take photos and write as much as I can. I guess I actually have some things I enjoy. I just had to take time to sit and think about me for a change. Check out some of my photos below!

College Tour

This was priceless and during last year’s Mother’s Day weekend

Love city scenery

I just had to capture this walking trail entrance

This is God’s artwork! Night sky

God is an amazing artist!

Peaceful

Take time to smell the roses.

Having flowers on the table is a must

Hate the weather but love its scenery

Snowfall and Serenity

The beginning stages of my Fall Decor Display.

Love this photo! First day of school. Who would have thought we would end the school year with remote learning?

Sometimes college tours present opportunities for great photos

Is this my good side?

Beautiful! Beautiful landscapes and the Word of God are awesome pairs

In The Shelter of The Most High

I can rest (rest spiritually, mentally, and emotionally, and productively as well as trust God, depend on God, and when I sleep have sweet and restful sleep) and be confident no matter what lies ahead because I habitually dwell in the shelter of the Most High. My Abba Father, my God. He is my refuge and my fortress. My defense and my present help, my Yahweh-Shalom, my provider, my counselor, and my hope. Thank You, God.

What practical ways can you intentionally rest in God? What scriptures can you meditate on to seek God first and foremost and learn to rest and abide in Him? What does it look like to trust in Him, especially in these times? How can you be a representative of God’s love and peace to someone else?