I’m Uneasy: Techniques for Managing Unease

Though anxiety can often make you feel trapped in your own thoughts, these tactics can help you relax, stay present, and manage anxiety if you’re feeling nervous, irritated, or terrified.


Why do I feel so tight?

Anxiety can stem from a variety of factors. For instance, you may find it difficult to fall asleep the night before a big test, an early flight, or a job interview. Alternatively, you may experience nausea when thinking about going to a party and interacting with strangers, or you may experience physical discomfort when comparing your bank balance to the steadily rising bills.

Even if it’s not always obvious, panic and anxiety attacks usually have a cause. There are times when it feels like you are tense, nervous, and irritable for no apparent reason.

Anxiety frequently precedes uncertainty. When your brain perceives that there is not enough information to make a prediction, it starts to create stories—usually bad ones. For instance, it could wonder, “Will my buddy return safely? They might run into each other.

“Am I prepared to deliver this speech? I fear I might become distracted.”

Will everyone at this party like me? Maybe I’ll say something stupid, or maybe they’ll all be cruel to me.

Your body naturally initiates the stress response in reaction to anxiety, releasing stress chemicals such as cortisol and adrenaline. While this stress response can be highly useful in protecting you in real danger, it is not particularly good at adjusting to the current situation. You thus feel tense and anxious whether you’re on a first date or in imminent risk of dying.

Anxiety can cause a variety of health problems, including headaches, insomnia, nausea, and difficulty concentrating. Frequent panic episodes may also have less obvious consequences on your life. For example, you might avoid going into a packed elevator and instead avoid such places. You may also choose to go a longer path if you wish to avoid merging on a busy roadway.

While concern is a natural emotion for everyone, many of us find it bothersome when it constantly interrupts our day-to-day activities. Anxiety might be made worse by fears that you won’t be able to stop it when it strikes unexpectedly, as in the case of a panic attack. However, it’s important to remember that there are a lot of useful strategies you can use to embrace uncertainty, reduce anxiety, and relax—even when these feelings feel overwhelming and uncontrollable.

Identify your anxiety triggers in order to predict anxiety as your first anxiety-reduction advice.

Even though anxiety is quite common, various persons are more or less likely to encounter the same kind of situations that trigger worry. By spending some time thinking about what personally triggers you, you can better predict when anxiety may strike and prepare for it when it does.

Having a discussion and meeting new people are two of the most common reasons to worry.

providing high-quality labor or instruction.

on one’s own.

managing your finances.

Taking illnesses or accidents into account.

addressing family members and friends, among others.

Making mistakes and trying novel approaches.

Certain situations, such high places, confined spaces, or crowded rooms, may cause anxiety in certain people.

Identify the outward signs of your anxiousness

Consider the things that make you feel anxious or stressed, as well as how these feelings show themselves physically. Being aware of your physical symptoms can help you identify and manage your anxiety, even if your typical triggers are absent and you seem to be suffering anxiety for no apparent reason.

Pay attention to your gut. Nausea or cramping in the stomach are common signs of anxiety. Alternatively, your appetite may go entirely.

Examine tight muscles in different parts of the body. Anxiety symptoms including a rigid neck, tense shoulders, or a tight jaw are frequently seen.

Recognize how you are breathing. You can observe that your breathing grows shallower as your anxiety level rises. Alternatively, you could tense yourself and stop breathing.

Once you have identified your triggers and physical cues, examine your coping mechanisms more closely to see if you have any unhealthy coping mechanisms that you automatically resort to. For example, when you are in a social situation, your muscles could tense up, and you might start binge drinking to try to relax and lower your anxiety.

Record your: as a school assignment.

reasons for feeling anxious. When and where you usually feel nervous.

physical indicators and manifestations. How anxiety affects your body.

harmful methods of adjusting. Any detrimental or unproductive techniques you’ve attempted to control your anxiety.

When you know more about the signs and symptoms of anxiety, managing its affects becomes easier.

Speak with a Licensed Therapist

Through its online counseling program, BetterHelp, you can get in touch with licensed, professional therapists who specialize in treating relationships, depression, anxiety, and other conditions. You can locate a therapist within 48 hours of finishing the assessment.

Determine something.

HelpGuide has user support. We will be compensated if you click through from this page to BetterHelp and use their services. Learn more

Tip 2: Work out to relieve stress

Exercise causes the release of endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin—chemicals in the brain that aid in relaxation. These drugs have the ability to quickly increase your energy, lower your anxiety, and lift your spirits.

[Read: The Advantages of Exercise for Mental Health]

Short bursts of exercise can help relieve stress in the here and now; you can begin right away to feel less anxious. Take part in whatever brings you joy and convenience, for example:

Go for a brief stroll or jog.

Do a few jumping jacks.

Do some yoga poses.

Take your child dancing with you.

Enjoy yourself with your animal companion.

Regular exercise has advantages as well over time. Research shows that regular exercise, regardless of fitness level, can help you manage stress and lower your risk of developing an anxiety disorder. It might also give you more self-assurance and help you put an end to the everyday concerns that consume your thoughts.

Every week, try to get in 150 minutes of moderately strenuous exercise or at least 75 minutes of extremely intense exercise.

Tip 3: Use your senses to stay present in the here and now.

When you’re nervous, it can be challenging to get outside of your own head. Your mind is racing, either from dwelling on past transgressions or being obsessed with the future. Instead than focusing on the unknowns of the days ahead or uncontrollable circumstances, try to ground yourself in the certainties of the here and now. This can stop your mind from racing and help you focus on what’s in front of you.

Use your senses to stay present and ease stress and anxiety:

Look about you. What observations do you make? Consider the surrounding light sources and the shadows they cast. Maybe you see a couple sitting together on a bench. Look for nonverbal clues from them.

Use your auditory senses. Which sounds are you aware of? Maybe there’s a tune playing on the radio. Try to figure out which instruments they are. Enjoy yourself while humming or singing the songs.

Inhale a smell. Grab a whiff of the adjacent flowers or light a candle.

Try some food or drink. Swig hot tea or chew on a piece of gum. What flavor is it?

Apply your sense of touch. Give a pet to your cat. Rub your neck or hands together. Look at the material of your clothing.

[Also see Simple Stress Reduction]

It is likely that some experiences with the senses work better than others. To reduce your worry and bring your attention back to the present moment, try a few simple things.

Keeping your balance during exercising

It is possible to mix grounding techniques or mindfulness with exercise. Regardless of the activity you select, try to focus on the feelings:

Enjoy the sound of the music and the feel of the sun on your skin while you stroll or dance outside.

Feel your chest rise and fall as you run, and your legs beat while you cycle.

By using your senses, you can calm your rushing thoughts and lessen your anxiousness.

Tip 4: Take a conscious approach to anxiety

When you feel anxiety beginning to grow, your natural reaction can be to push back against or suppress your emotions. You might even decide that the best course of action is to simply avoid your triggers, which could include crowds of people, heights, or public speaking occasions.

However, practicing mindfulness can provide a different approach. A component of the mindful approach is learning to engage with your thoughts, feelings, and experiences with more attention. Try to stop passing judgment on your anxiety instead of trying to ignore or suppress it. After that, a much more satisfying mental state known as curiosity can begin to take the place of your anxiety.

In his book Unwinding Anxiety, Dr. Judson Brewer suggests that you see inquiry as a superpower. Unlike fear, curiosity allows you to be open and in the moment. It can help you navigate anxiety waves and break free from worrying behaviors.

The next time you’re feeling anxious, try utilizing Brewer’s RAIN approach to mindfulness practice:

Ascertain the onset of your worry. Again, it helps to have some awareness of the particular bodily signs and symptoms of anxiety that are specific to you.

Allow the feelings to sweep over you. Take a minute to stop and embrace your anxiety rather than attempting to get rid of it.

Analyze the mounting panic. Curiosity is essential in this situation. Become interested in the anxiety symptoms that you are most accustomed to experiencing. Is your jaw tight in any way? On which side of your face is it? Are thoughts flying through your head? What are your thoughts?

Make a note of the emotions. Refrain from trying to interpret, evaluate, or resolve your discomfort. Alternatively, just label how you feel. You can keep yourself aware by doing this. When you approach your worry in this manner, you’ll discover that the wave eventually subsides.

Research suggests that verbalizing your emotional experiences, or “affect labeling,” can help you regulate your emotions in stressful situations. 

March 15, 2024

Freya Parker

Freya Parker lives in Sydney and writes about cars. She's really good at explaining car stuff in simple words. She studied at a good university in Melbourne. Freya started her career at Auto Trader, where she learned a lot about buying and selling cars. She also works with We Buy Cars in South Africa and some small car businesses in Australia.

What makes her special is that she cares about the environment. She likes to talk about how cars affect the world. Freya writes in a friendly way that helps people understand cars better. That's why many people in the car industry like to listen to her.

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