Some Things to Do if You or Your Child is Experiencing Anxiety

Posted on October 23, 2013, in Stress and Anxiety

Anxiety is a normal response to trauma. During this stressful time anxiety is a signal, a protective mechanism to slow you or your child down. It’s letting you know that you are experiencing something very new and challenging; something no one has ever really prepared you to handle. It doesn’t mean that you or your child is falling apart or can’t manage this; only that you need some direction from those with experience as to what to do.

This is a time to go back to basics; to keep life simple. We all experience major challenges in life. This is how we become stronger and wiser. You survived this and you will become stronger from this experience. This may seem like an impossibility right now, but life is always changing. What is hard now, will become easier given time as you actively engage the responses we’ve suggested.

How to Relieve Anxiety

  • Your anxiety can stem from lack of information and details about the incident. List any questions you have.
  • Your anxiety may stem from the worry this experience has triggered. What is your biggest worry? Identify the elements of this worry - what is actual and what is not. Identify (problem solve) what can be done about the actual events.
  • Maintain a routine.
  • Avoid making any major decisions.
  • Exercise.
  • Decrease stimulants like caffeine, coffee, soft drinks.
  • Engage in physical relaxation activities.
  • Identify where in your body you experience the anxiety the most and breath deeply four or five times, then take a moment to focus on a pleasant, pleasurable time in your life. Identify where in your body you experience that pleasure. Now return to the place in your body where you felt the anxiety. It will feel a little bit better. Repeat this as needed knowing you can temporarily alter the anxiety reaction. In time it will weaken.

Another Option: Identify where in your body you feel this anxiety; focus on that place. Take four deep breaths. Now move that spot in your body (just imagine it moving) into - your stomach, then into your legs, and then your feet. Now kind of stretch your entire body, neck, arms, back, legs like you do when you get up in the morning. Take another four deep breaths and relax.

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