5 Awesome Tips for Dealing With Stress and Anxiety
Being the cheeky son-of-a-bitch that it is, anxiety can be a painful distraction. It causes us to worry about things that aren’t going to happen. It makes us focus our mental energy on things that don’t matter. It interferes with sleep. Generally speaking, it makes life more stressful than being a beer vendor at an Irish Pride parade. There are some common ways in which anxiety likes to mess with our heads. Here are some tips on how to prevent it from doing so:
- Stop asking yourself “what if?”
Anxiety can make you think that the worst possible outcome is the most likely one. It is important to remember that this concept, much like all anxious thoughts, is bullshit. Worrying about things that haven’t happened yet is like fishing without dynamite: inefficient, and a waste of time. So, how do we put an end to this irrational style of thinking?
Firstly, it’s essential to rule out anything that is extremely unlikely. We all have enough on our plates without concerning ourselves with outcomes that are highly improbable. While anxious thoughts may seem legitimate, many scenarios we consider to be realistic are about as likely as Charlie Sheen being invited to join MENSA. While we could get hit by a bus or struck by lightning tomorrow, we probably won’t, so eliminate these sorts of concerns from your mind.
Secondly, live in the moment. As Alice Caldwell Rice said, it ain’t no use putting up your umbrella till it rains. It has been said that depressed people are overly focussed on the past, while anxious people are living in the future. Those who suffer both depression and anxiety are bouncing between eras like an upset, nervous version of Bill and Ted. Come back to now and live in the present. Worry about it when it actually happens!
Ok, so maybe worry about it a bit before it happens
- Be decisive!
Getting wound up over little choices that you have to make on a daily basis is a pain in the ass. Sometimes insignificant decisions can seem more important than they really are. Wasting mental energy on petty decisions like “what should I have for breakfast” is counter-productive. Take some advice from Obama:
“You need to remove from your life the day-to-day problems that absorb most people for meaningful parts of their day. .. You’ll see I wear only gray or blue suits. I’m trying to pare down decisions. I don’t want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make. You need to focus your decision-making energy. You need to routinize yourself. You can’t be going through the day distracted by trivia.” – President Obama, Vanity Fair
As stated by our friend Barack, it’s important to have an efficient routine and to use your resources on things that actually matter!
Here’s to gray suits, bitches!
- Improve Your Level of Focus
Being anxious can wreak havoc on your ability to focus properly. If anxiety were a person, it would be Kanye West: that one obnoxious jackass that butts in when their input is not wanted.
Now I’m really happy for you, Rational Thoughts, and Imma let you finish…
Don’t let your worries distract you when your attention is required elsewhere. If someone is talking to you, listen to what they’re saying. If you’re watching a movie, watch the movie. Try to reduce the amount of things that are distracting you. As per earlier, live in the moment, not the future!
- Get better sleep
Getting to sleep when you’re all wound up can be difficult. If you’re lying in bed as sweaty as a sumo wrestler’s jock strap, you’re not relaxed. A great way to improve sleep is to get enough exercise. You can also try some herbal remedies such as chamomile tea or valerian root. Take sleeping pills as a last resort only, as they can be addictive and interfere with healthy sleep patterns.
Tea: not just for pussies
- Keep Occupied
As per our previous article, remember that a surplus of spare time can lead to a surplus of stress and worry. Never sit at home alone feeling bored. There is a good way to silence those anxious Kanye West interruptions in your head: keep your mind occupied by doing stuff. Preferably stuff that you enjoy! Adopting a fun and healthy lifestyle will do wonders for your mental wellbeing.
Even Santa makes the most of his down-time
Until next time,
Don’t Worry Be Happy!