Stress is cumulative. When your mind is running amok with worries, concerns and a plate piled high with ‘doing’, this triggers stress, which boosts cortisol levels
(blood sugar) causing a domino effect of unbalanced hormones which mess with sleep cycles. And there you’ve brewed yourself the perfect stew of anxiety.
Before we dig into this anxiety causing cycle, I would be remiss if I did not mention that there are medical reasons for anxiety that shouldn’t be ignored. Thyroid imbalances, anxiety disorders, trauma – heart disease and asthma also cause anxiety as well as mental health issues. Early childhood trauma is another trigger and these are just a few of the underlying causes of anxiety. If you are experiencing severe anxiety please see your doctor or mental health professional.
But with medical issues ruled out, the self-inflicted anxiety remains.
So, I want to take a minute to thread this all together – overwhelm is an emotional state developed from beliefs and habits we unwittingly adopt. Such as guilt, which leads to over-pleasing, which leads to over-whelm. Which we now know, from Part 1 (Five Strategies to Overcome Guilt) and Part 2 (The Disease to Please) of this series, is due societal training of women to feel guilty and over-please.
I’d like to invite you to let go and to gently weave new habits into your life that will replace this anxiety triggering cycle. Are you with me?
Try these steps, find the ones that work for you right now.
#1: Women – Know your ‘edge’
The truth of the matter is we navigate hormonally charged emotions every single month. Be mindful of that edgy feeling so it does not become another ingredient in your cauldron. Feel it, recognize it, warn those around you, cut yourself some slack, back off on the caffeine and sugar and schedule a massage or Reiki session.
#2: Have these tools close by:
- When you feel anxiety, breathe in through your nose deeply and breathe out with the ‘ahhhh’ sound, three times (or more).
- Place the palm of one hand on your forehead, and the palm of the other hand on the back of your head. Close your eyes and feel the comforting sensation of lovingly holding your head. This along with the ‘ahhhh’ breathing method is a wonderful way to calm anxious feelings.
#3: Keep it real
A question that helps me is to ask, “Am I okay right now in this moment?” There may be a huge project due next week, but in this moment, are you okay? Anxiety is often caused by worrying about something that has not even happened.
You have a choice, you can let whatever it is that is provoking the anxiety cause your mind to run amok, or replace the anxiety provoking thought with a mantra. Two of my favorites are “I surrender, I surrender, I surrender” and “All things are resolving themselves for me harmoniously now”. I’ve used both of these countless times and shared them with many friends with glowing results.
Do something that makes you happy – go outside, take a dance break, go for a walk, meditate, read something inspirational, write down ten gratitudes. Doing something that breaks the state of your mind, is like taking your foot of the gas pedal and shifting into cruise. And, sometimes there are outside things that can help, here are a few of my favorites:
L-Theanine (Suntheanine is the purest form) is an amino acid that boosts GABA in the brain (an inhibitory neurotransmitter). Theanine seems to calm the brain without sedation and even helps with mental clarity. At my nutrition store both humans and animals benefited from a flower essence called Five Flower Remedy.
*If you are pregnant or nursing or on medications for anxiety, please consult your health practitioner.
What is the single biggest insight, from this 3-part series you have gained that you can take action on now? Please post below in the comments section.