Anxiety sucks, I get it. I have suffered at times with my own anxiety and have also helped countless other people work through their anxiety. While everyone experiences anxiety differently, have different triggers and different ways their anxiety shows up, there are three main ways I see people contributing to their anxiety in unhelpful ways.
First, you have a chaotic environment. Gretchen Rubin has a book called Outer Order, Inner Calm (link here) and has done a ton of research on how your outer environment impacts your inner experiences. Even if you think you are clutter blind (love that term) and it doesn’t bother you, I am betting it does. When you are in chaos, it inevitably penetrates into inner turmoil. Just think about it, do you notice a difference when you walk into a clean house versus when you walk into a house that looks like it was just hit by a tornado? Yes! That is because your surroundings play a role in our feelings.
Just like outer chaos impacts your inner state, so does what you think about. Are you one of those people that doesn’t write things down because you think you will remember and then forget or can’t remember what you were supposed to remember? That aids in our anxiety in huge ways because we are anxious about forgetting something or are not adequately prepared with what we need when we do not remember. That is why the second way you are making your anxiety worse is through your mental clutter.
The third way you are making your anxiety worse is by trying to do it all by yourself. This could look many different ways. Maybe you are anxious at work because you don’t know how you are going to get everything done when if you asked for help, you wouldn’t be so anxious. Or maybe you are trying to take care of the house, the kids and pets all at the same time and if you just asked your spouse, a friend or family member for support you would be able to lower your anxiety because you would not be so overwhelmed.
The way I commonly see this play out is with therapy. People don’t reach out for help with their mental health for a variety of reasons but if they would, they would experience so much more peace.
That is why I created my new course The Courage To Confront Anxiety-A Holistic Guide To Anxiety Treatment. Maybe you aren’t ready to talk to someone but you know changes need to happen or maybe you are in therapy but want to focus on holistic care. This course will help you learn to minimize your anxiety and increase your peace.
If you want to learn more about the course, you can visit here.
If you aren’t ready, that is okay. Pay attention to these three ways you make your anxiety worse and start making changes so you are working for yourself instead of against yourself.
You are worth it!
Every time I think of celebrating, these words pop into my head…..
Take time to celebrate.
Celebrate your successes, your growth, your accomplishments. Celebrate you and who you are.
For too long you have been too hard on yourself. Others have spilled their negative energy—their attitudes, beliefs, pain—on you. It had nothing to do with you! All along, you have been a gift to yourself and to the Universe.
You are a child of God. Beautiful, a delight, a joy. You do not have to try harder, be better, be perfect, or be anything you are not. Your beauty is in you, just as you are each moment.
When you have a success, when you accomplish something, enjoy it. Pause, reflect, rejoice. Too long you have listened to admonitions not to feel good about what you have done, lest you travel the downward road to arrogance.
Celebration is a high form of praise, of gratitude to the Creator for the beauty of God’s creation. To enjoy and celebrate the good does not mean that it will be taken from you. To celebrate is to delight in the gift, to show gratitude.
Celebrate your relationships! Celebrate the lessons from the past and the love and warmth that is there today. Enjoy the beauty of others and their connection to you.
Celebrate all that is in your life. Celebrate all that is good. Celebrate you!
Today, I will indulge in the joy of celebrating.
From the book: The Language of Letting Go: Hazelden Meditation Series
Let me give you some back story. For years when I was a family counselor at the Meadows we would share this excerpt every week at family graduation. I remember hearing it the first time and thinking about how beautiful it was but by the 100th time, it wasn’t as earth shattering to me. I had become numb to the power of the words.
But now that I have had some distance from the words because I have worked there for a number of years, I am able to once again see the beauty. It is so powerful if we are able to do what the excerpt says and celebrate our growth and our accomplishments.
I have recently been talking to a lot of my clients about this. Often times our growth comes on gradually and if we are not intentional, we may miss out on noticing the growth and celebrating it.
It is crucial to celebrate any growth, big or small.
If I am honest with you, I sometimes struggle with this too. As I am writing this, I am reflecting on the last year. I have expanded my private practice, created an online course (and ¾ of another course), started a blog and have a social media following. Those are BIG things for my business but if I am not careful, I can easily downplay my successes and instead focus on what I didn’t do or that my impact was not as big as I wanted but that will not serve me nor my business.
But, when I am able to step into the celebration of my growth and accomplishments, I am able to take a breath and get recharged for what is next. I am able to remind myself why I do what I do and the impact my business is having on others.
Personally, when I am able to celebrate a win, my joy has a ripple effect on my whole family.
Plus, more is caught than taught.
So, if I am celebrating my wins, I am teaching my kids to do the same, for themselves and others.
My oldest is currently learning how to read. When he is able to read a new book or tackle a big word, he is so proud of himself and celebrates that win. When his younger brothers see him accomplishing something new at school, they also encourage and celebrate his growth. We have fostered an atmosphere of celebration for one another.
So, what are some things you want to celebrate today?
Maybe you got out of bed and showered and that is a win for you, good job! Perhaps you reached a goal at work or for your fitness, awesome! Celebrate that. It doesn’t have to be cake and streamers (though it can) but find ways to celebrate YOU today.
You are worth it!
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Jocelyn is a Licensed Professional Counselor and course creator who desires to help clients heal and grow into who God created them to be.