Responding to Fear and Anxiety – Shake Off Anxiety with Two Simple Words!
Have you ever noticed how anxiety is fuelled by one simple question you keep asking yourself?
That question is… what if?
If anxious ‘what if’s’ are not quickly defused, they tend to spiral out of control, leaping from one catastrophic thought to another. Before you know it these ‘what ifs’ have triggered a tidal wave of adrenaline and fear.
What if?…What if?…And then what if ?
You can’t stop these ‘what if’s’. They manifest outside your control. What you can control is how you respond to them.
In order to defuse these anxious ‘what ifs’ you need to answer the question quickly and limit the potential for the anxiety to spiral out of control.
A good strong response to a ‘what if’ is: ‘So what!’
What if I drive my car on the highway and I have a panic attack?
So what! I’ll pull over and get through it like I have always done in the past.
What if faint in public, who will help me?
So what! If I faint I faint. Someone will come to help me and in two minutes I will be conscious again.
What if my mind never stops racing with thoughts?
So what! Thoughts are just thoughts and cannot harm me. Eventually my anxious mind will settle.
It doesn’t matter if you don’t fully believe in your own responses to these questions, the key point here is to quickly defuse the build-up of fear by answering the ‘what if’ with a strong enough response.
As long as you come up with something reassuring and dismissive of the initial ‘what if’ thought it will have the desired effect.
To make your response even more effective you can have a sense of humor with your replies. Humor is the fastest way to disengage your anxious mind. An anxious thought can be diminished in a flash of laughter.
This is effective because it neutralize the fear and places you back into a position of power.
Side step the trap of anxiety by always responding to fear and anxiety with a good strong ‘so what!
Responding to Fear and Anxiety – Play Anxiety Away
Play and laughter are such powerful tools for reducing feelings of anxiety.
I am a huge advocate of using humor and play to boost mood and reduce anxious feelings. I know many people who transformed their anxiety just by doing focusing on play and laughter alone.
I recently recorded an interview with Charlie Hoehn who is a marketing strategist for several New York Times best-sellers , and the author of a new book called ‘Play it Away’.
I really liked his book because its basic premise is how to use play to snap out of an anxious state of mind.
BTW, if you suffer from burnout at work I think you will find this interview particularly interesting.
Besides Play the other topics discussed for reducing anxiety are:
-Tension Releasing Exercises.
-Why you should stop watching the news.
-Spending time outside in nature
Right Click the Download Audio link below select “Save Target/link As
For more ideas about responding to fear and anxiety, watch this video – Be The Warrior Not The Worrier – Fighting Anxiety & Fear | Angela Ceberano | TEDxBedminster
By Barry McDonagh, who is an international panic disorder coach. He created the Panic Away program to help people around the world deal with their anxiety and avoid panic attacks – a subject that he is personally attuned to because he himself found that he was prone to these issues since he was young. His hatred of his powerless lead him down the path of finding natural ways to treat himself without having to depend on expensive medications.
His informative site on all issues related to panic and anxiety attacks can be found here: Anxiety Distraction Ideas – What is the Best Way for Responding to Fear and Anxiety?