Are you someone who experiences a lot of stress, anxious thoughts or negative patterns? Many times what is causing anxiety is what you are holding on to. This article is based on the YouTube Video of Jay Shetty, in which he explains what is causing anxiety and 11 techniques that he uses to overcome anxiety.
What Is Anxiety?
Most people when they experience any type of pain whether that be physical, emotional or mental, equate that pain with anxiety. But a couple of years ago, one of Jay Shetty’s podcast guests changed this equation as pain plus reflection equals progress. It shows us that all of us experience pain but when we add reflection to it, it can lead to progress. The most amazing thing about this equation is that if you remove the word reflection, you lose progress and all you’re left with is pain. Sharing with you 11 reflections or techniques that you can use to turn pain into progress. First of all, you need to realise what is causing anxiety.
11 Ways To Overcome Anxiety
- Find the things that have been holding you back
- Find the root cause of your anxiety and change how you look at things
- Zoom out from your work and think of the impact it makes on others
- Relax and take a look at art and sceneries
- Practice gratitude
- Find some inspiration
- Meditate, schedule a time for yourself
- Use 5,4,3,2,1 Method
- Use scents to help you relax
- Listen to music
1. Find the things that have been holding you back
What Is Causing Anxiety – Short Story
This is a story that was often told by the Buddha. This story was about the journey of a person who came across a tumultuous river. When they saw this river they knew that if they set foot inside this river they would get dragged away by the current. They realised that they would have to build somewhat of a vehicle or mode of transport to get to the other side. They started to get a log and they thought maybe that was enough. They pushed it out onto the water and the water just completely took away the log. They then realised they would have to build something a lot more stable. They got some bamboo. They created two rows. They tied it up with some rope. They even built an ore. They got on top and they started to paddle with all their strength and all their energy and finally, they made it to the other side. This person thought to themselves I can never live without this raft. This saved my life. This raft is the reason I’m alive. So they strapped it to their back and decided to take it wherever they want. They started to walk through the forest. But they realised it was difficult to manoeuvre because the raft just kept getting stuck in between the trees and they’d try and pivot and manoeuvre and try and navigate through. But the rafter just getting chipped and broken and they could either continue to try and struggle through with the raft on their back or they could put the raft down and walk through freely.
So often what’s causing us anxiety is what we’re holding on to, our views of what is normal, what we expect, what we want to happen the picture we’re projecting. When you’re holding on tightly to something that is slowly being pulled out of your hands, it causes you, even more, pain and anxiety. You need to let go off, to reduce your anxiety.
2. Find the root cause of your anxiety
The second method to overcome anxiety is from a book by Wayne Dyer, called Change your thoughts change your mind. We know that we have around 60 to 80000 thoughts per day. The most incredible thing is these thoughts are cycling. They’re not only repetitive but they’re also negative. Knowing which of the most repetitive and negative thoughts allows you to spot their trigger.
What do we want to do?
Find that trigger, trace that trigger back to its root, and reduce that activity in our life. Often what we think is causing us anxiety is different from the root of where it started. It was Wayne Dyer who said when we change the way we look at things the things we look at change. Let’s look at our thoughts differently. Stop thinking that you are your thoughts and that your thoughts are all you are. Recognizing that we’re so much beyond our thoughts allows us to disconnect and distance from them and then upgrade them towards healthier thoughts.
3. Zoom out from your work
Many of us get caught up in doing the actual tasks. But we forget to look beyond our laptops, look beyond our screens., look beyond the actual tasks. Zoom out and think about the impact that our work actually has on others. Your work may be allowing you to put food on the table and take care of your family. It may be helping your children go to a specific school. It may be helping them have certain opportunities. When you look up from the task and focus on what your work truly allows you and the people you love to do, you start looking far beyond just that activity. Think about that today zoom out. And that reduces the anxiety, it reduces the stress that is attached to the day-to-day task and allows you to look at it from a bird’s eye view. This one’s easy.
4. Relax and take a look at art and sceneries
Whether you’re looking at a beautiful view when you’re on a walk or whether you’re looking at artwork in your home, looking at something that has natural elements can be so inspiring and so calming that you will feel relaxed from the anxiety. Surrounding with artwork or inspirational portraits drives to thoughts of what those individuals went through, what struggles and challenges they went through. That helps to deal with anxiety, learn the right path and to make a difference.
TIME – Acronym
5. Practice gratitude
‘T’ stands for thankfulness. The incredible thing about gratitude is that when you’re present in gratitude you can’t be anywhere else. That means that if you’re having a thankful thought, you can’t have a worrying thought. If you’re having a grateful thought you can’t have an anxious thought. What an incredible creation? Gratitude and thankfulness have to be practised in a particular way.
It has to be first of all expressed. Keeping a gratitude journal is wonderful. Writing down what you’re grateful for is beautiful. But it’s only when you express it that it starts to have an impact.
The second way it has to be practised is it has to be specific. It has to be specific to the person, it has to be something specific that happened recently, that’s current, or even if it happened in the past.
The third way is it has to be personalised. It has to be something that you’d only say to them. It’s not something that you could send to 20 people and they could all feel it was about them.
Here is an example. Two people come to your home for a party. They both text you the day after the party. The first person texts you ‘Thanks so much’. The second person texts ‘we had an amazing time. We loved meeting all your friends. We loved meeting your family. It was such a great time and the food was out of this world. Thank you so much. Obviously, the party and the games that we played were just so much fun. It was the highlight of my year.’
Which message is going to make you feel more loved and cared for? Obviously, it’s the second because it’s not only expressed but it’s specific and it’s personalized. Now the amazing thing about gratitude given in that way is that not only is the receiver happy but the giver is so much happier as well. The bond that you create when you share that type of thankfulness will start to reduce anxiety in your life because it boosts your immune system, it boosts your mood and it boosts your relationships.
6. Find some inspiration
‘I’ is the second letter in the acronym TIME that stands for inspiration. Inspiration helps us deal with anxiety because when we’re feeling inspired when we’re feeling motivated, we’re able to use that emotion to help navigate the anxious emotions we’re having along the way. Get inspired by listening to audiobooks, and by listening to incredible speeches.
Every single day morning you can listen to good music or inspirational speeches and that would give you a boost of inspiration. Instead of starting mornings by looking at smartphones, social media notifications, opening up your mind to news or such negativity starting the day with an inspirational word, an inspirational paragraph from a book you love or an inspirational quote will help to boost inspiration and remove anxiety.
‘M‘ the third letter in the acronym ‘TIME‘ stands for meditation. Have you tried to meditate and found really struggles and doesn’t work for you? Start scheduling time with yourself in your diary. We would never cancel an important meeting with someone else but we don’t even schedule one with ourselves. Start by having that time as your meditation time. Just sit with yourself and check-in with yourself. Ask yourself “how am I doing today? How do I feel? What do I need to do better? Just checking in with yourself is the beginning of your meditation practice. This will help to reduce anxiety.
The last letter ‘E’ in the acronym ‘TIME‘ stands for exercise. One of the ways the exercise really becomes different is when you make it collaborative or when you make it competitive. If you’re collaborative with someone and you have accountability and you both have the same goals, it becomes really exciting. If you’re someone who’s competitive and you want to get out there and play a sport together and see who’s improving, those are great ways. Even seen families trying to compete with the kids and the parents to see who can take more steps in one day. Read Importance Of Exercise
Exercises and physical activities help to reduce anxiety, stress and other mental health problems. There is no need to do hard activities, but small activities are enough. Do you have the habit of a morning walk or evening walk regularly? Do you know what will happen to your body if you walk every day?
9. Use 5,4,3,2,1 Method
The next technique is the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 method. When you’re feeling anxious what’s happening is that your mind is either rushing to the past or it’s predicting and projecting the future. So you’re either anxious about something that you experienced before or you’re feeling really nervous and anxious about something that might or could happen in the future.
The best way to come back into the present moment is the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 method. You want to start off by looking around wherever you are and noticing the five things you can see. It could be the windows, the walls, the ceilings.
Then focus on the four things you can touch. It could be something you’re wearing and you really want to feel the texture. It could be what you’re sitting on. Just noticing it and really grounding yourself and holding on to that.
Then it’s about three things you can hear. It could be nothing, it could be white noise.
Then the two things you can smell in. It could be a scent you’re wearing, it could be a flower.
Finally, the one thing you can taste.
When you practice this, it brings you back into the present moment and helps you not focus on the anxiety or the nervousness but on taking action from exactly where you are. A lot of the time we’re trying to control anxiety up here. What is hard about that is if you feel like you’ve got brain fog or you’re feeling cloudy, it becomes really difficult to find clarity.
10. Use scents to help you relax
Using external things can be huge like diffusers and candles because a diffuser is infusing the whole environment with a beautiful scent and it truly changes your mind. If you walk into a space just think of a spa, as soon as you walk in, you feel different because of the scent. It could just be a normal room but the centre of lavender, sandalwood any of these essential oils can truly calm your body right down.
Some people feel that silence creates anxiety and some people feel that sound creates anxiety. Sometimes complete silence helps to relax and really hear the thoughts that want to focus on.
11. Listen to music
Some meditation music and ambient music can make an impact on anxiety. Please use music in your environments in different rooms in your home to help you achieve different emotions and feelings that you want to feel at that time. You must have heard music has the power of healing.
What Is Causing Anxiety?
Credits: YouTube Jay Shetty
Hope you could realise what is causing anxiety and also learned 11 easy ways to overcome anxiety. Sometimes we keep repeating the same mistakes due to anxiety from the traumatic past. Keep the mind in the present on what you can focus on here and now. I have a lot of anxiety problems. When I get small pain or silly matter, I think a lot and that causes anxiety. I found the above video on YouTube and thought it would be better to share the story with others. While watching the video, I realised that one of the main reasons that is causing anxiety is what I am holding on to my mind, the past failures, past incidents, negative thoughts and the list goes on. But frankly speaking, I find it difficult to control them.
Could you realise what is causing anxiety to you?
Do you have anxiety problems? If yes, how do you handle it?
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Mathukutty P. V. is the founder of Simply Life Tips, a passionate Blogger, Content writer, Influencer, YouTuber. Lives with a notion “SIMPLE LIVING, CREATIVE THINKING”. Believe – “Sharing is caring.” “Learning never ends.”