4 Self-Sabotaging Habits To Avoid
Anxiety can lead us to develop destructive habits that make our lives difficult. Unlike toy helicopters and wedding vows, people find these habits hard to break! This article will discuss some of these negative characteristics, and how you can improve your life by getting them under control.
Productivity tends to plummet when anxiety strikes, making way for lethargy and laziness. I don’t mean being lazy like parking in handicapped spaces or picking up dropped Doritos with your feet (that’s genius, not laziness). I mean scraping through the week doing the bare-minimum, putting off normal day to day tasks.
Firstly, being in a messy environment will only make you feel worse, so it is a good idea to get on top of your household chores! Instead of procrastinating and feeling sorry for yourself, get up and do some tidying. Cleaning can feel therapeutic if you approach it with a positive attitude, and you feel a good sense of achievement once it’s all done.
Other important things should not be postponed or left to the last minute either. Keep on top of all maintenance requirements in your life, including taking care of your health, relationships, car, and toy helicopters. Stop putting things off and making excuses. Get out and do what you normally do. Or, where possible, at least make sure the kids do it for you.
People believe that when they take fast, shallow breaths they are not getting enough oxygen. This is a common misconception; you are actually getting too much oxygen, and releasing carbon dioxide faster than your body can replace it, throwing this important balance out of whack. Forget what those dreadlock-clad whingers on TV say, C02 is important stuff. A deficiency of it in your blood can cause an increase in anxiety and panic.
Breathing slowly allows your body time to regain its carbon dioxide balance and will feel calming:
“[Slow breathing] is like an anchor in the midst of an emotional storm: the anchor won’t make the storm go away, but it will hold you steady until it passes.” – Russ Harris
Particularly during episodes of panic, it is essential to focus on your breathing. Try to take a slow, deliberate breath, hold it in for 2 seconds, then release. You now have a new weapon for fighting off panic!
Being a Negative Nancy
Focusing on the negative is a choice we sometimes make when we feel like being assholes to ourselves. Nothing is ever as bad as it seems, so seeing the dark side of everything is pointless and detrimental. If you are going through shitty circumstances, it’s more important than ever to keep positive. Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning to dance in the rain.
Remember that pessimism is not only bad for yourself; those around you will soon get sick of your shit too. It’s good to vent and talk about your issues with people. Just try to see the positive side of things and enjoy yourself sometimes, or soon your presence will be as desirable as a ham sandwich at a Bar Mitzvah.
While easier said than done, it’s important to learn to respect and love yourself. Achieve this, and you will start to feel entitled to all the good things in life. You are worthy and deserving of happiness, so keep that chin up and cut yourself some slack.
Avoiding Normal, Fun Stuff
As per my other article, engaging in pleasurable activities is essential for good mental health. Avoiding fun stuff is common when people feel stressed or down, but avoiding these things is counter-productive. Maintaining your normal routine is a better idea.
Whatever you are worrying about now will be over and forgotten before you know it, so don’t let it ruin anything for you, short term or long term. Avoid sitting at home and neglecting your hobbies, work or relationships. Get out amongst other people and keep active.
Also keep in mind that laughter is the best medicine! Watch an amusing movie, see a comedy show, hang out with funny people, or read one of my exceptionally humorous articles. Whatever catalyst for laughter you choose, just try to make it something harmless and high-brow; nothing immature or at the expense of others.
…Oh who am I kidding.
As always, try to implement some of these suggestions and see what works for you! Join in and comment with any advice you may have for others. What sort of bad habits have you developed, and how do you deal with them?
Until next time,
Don’t Worry Be Happy!