January 2, 2014

New Year, Same Old Anxiety

It is day two of 2014 and some of you may have already broken your new year resolutions- if you had the time or energy to make resolutions at all. With the holidays behind you, you are starting to think about work, school, kids, bills, and feeling the anxieties of your real life start to creep back in. The anxiety can start to suck the energy and enjoyment out of your life.

In the Christian scriptures, there is a verse with wisdom about how to handle worry and stress, "Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." I have also heard it said this way, "Do not borrow trouble." Think about how much time and energy you invest in worrying. How many minutes, or hours of your day are spent worrying. And then ask yourself as the scriptures do,"Who of by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"

But, how can you worry less, and enjoy your life more??? Today you can start with one simple technique - take your day one moment at at time. In other words, instead of trying to control your whole day, your whole week, and all of the relationships in your life, just focus on the next hour of your life. Can you handle what is on your plate for the next hour? If so, you can handle all of the challenges in your life. I recommend you keep redirecting your mind to focus only on the challenges and blessings of each moment. Learning to live in the moment will help you live more fully.

Living in the moment is the first step. Next I would recommend that you learn some additional skills to help decrease your anxiety. You can do this at home through the help of some books that give you practical, hands-on tools.  Two the books that have been helpful to my clients are listed on my website and include:

  • When Panic Attacks: The New Drug Free Therapy That Can Change Your Life
  • The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook by Edmund J.Bourne

Finally, if you are having trouble managing anxiety on your own, I recommend you schedule an appointment with a therapist. A therapist can act as a coach, or trainer to help you identify what has not worked in your life and help you find the motivations and tools that will get you moving in the right direction.

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