Anxiety can be a beast but often times these common things can trigger our anxious thoughts and send us into a downward spiral. If you are currently feeling like anxiety is on the horizon be sure to avoid the following:
A morning or afternoon cup of coffee can serve as a hot cup of anxiety. When working with my clients who are defeating anxiety the first assessment item is their caffeine usage. I have found that those who consume more caffeine tend to be more anxious throughout the day. I often recommend consuming a less caffeinated drink or substituting it with an herbal tea that will naturally boost energy levels. Teeccino is by far our favorite!
Quality sleep is a lifesaver and has been linked to mood and immune function. Anxiety can be triggered by a lack of sleep and poor sleeping habits. Think of your endocrine system! Anxiety activates the sympathetic nervous system which is responsible for our flight or fight response. While sleep triggers the parasympathetic nervous system which is associated with rest and digestion. Lack of quality sleep will keep the button pressed on the flight or fight response; leaving you feeling on edge. Try to aim for at least 6-8 hours of undisrupted sleep a night.
When you are feeling anxious the last thing you want to do is feed your anxiety with sugar. This will fuel those pesky thoughts and the cycle will begin. Much like caffeine, excessive sugar can cause physiological symptoms of anxiety. I often ask my clients about their sugar intake and find that I am often met with an inquisitive response. Your anxiety does not need a dessert! Opt for natural sources of sugar such as fruit when your anxiety is triggered. Try herbal or calming teas that encourage your body to relax. Read our tea blog for some tips.
Yes, I said it! Social media can send your anxiety into a frenzy. Imagine being anxious and scrolling down your timeline to see stories and posts that make you even more anxious. Social media is like reading the personal journals of strangers and they are emotionally dumping to the max. Therefore, a boundary must be set to prevent elevated anxiety. Elect to step away from social media and download a self-care app. One of my favorites is Insight Timer! Use this app for at least 10 minutes before getting back on social media. It could also be helpful to control and filter your timeline. Follow a good mixture of inspirational and motivational pages. Add @thestilettofiles to your timeline.
This may sound silly but some of us have taken on the role of fortune-telling. When our anxiety peaks most of the time, it is because we are worrying about an outcome that has not yet happened. However, anxiety makes us think that we have a glimpse into the future and that the result is not favorable. This is not true. The last thing that you need when you are feeling super anxious is to pull out your imaginary crystal ball. Stop predicting an outcome that is unlikely to happen. Shift your focus to the present moment. After all the present is the only moment in time that you can actually control. Try our anxiety exercises found on our empower portal.
Remember sis, you are in control of your thoughts and feelings. Now go out there and let anxiety know who is boss!
TSF Therapy is a virtual healing space for women in the state of Tennessee & Georgia. TSF Therapy provides psychotherapy and is an extension to The Stiletto Files brand.