You have it because it is human, and normal. The real question is, what are you going to do about it? Hoping it goes away is not the answer. Read on.
Anxiety can cripple, stifle, stall, depress and/or significantly interfere with anyone regardless of age, gender, marital status, work position, etc. and while triggered by many things, “The study found that traumatic life events were the single biggest determinant of anxiety and depression” — University of Liverpool, 2013
For adults, the top ten most stressful life events and their “Life Change Unit” scores are as follows:
- Death of a spouse: 100
- Divorce: 73
- Marital separation: 65
- Imprisonment: 63
- Death of a close family member: 63
- Personal injury or illness: 53
- Marriage: 50
- Dismissal from work: 47
- Marital reconciliation: 45
- Retirement: 45
The newly divorced are clearly hit hard with a heavy burden, one of the results of which is often this hideous creature called anxiety. With permission, I’m sharing a snapshot from our divorced entrepreneurs group:
“I have been working on opening up my mail. For some it is one of the simplest tasks. However, for me it’s like revisiting the past in a time machine. Two years is two boxes of anxiety. I open letters and begin organizing with the intent to finish, but I am stopped by the emotions from grieving, foreclosure, and bankruptcy. The task then becomes overwhelming and I give up.”
Personally, I remember being left with a house full of memories (i.e. stuff). I struggled with the same anxiety, emotions and procrastination about addressing it.
A good friend suggested spending 10 minutes a day and “either ditch it or donate it”. Slowly but surely I was able to rid my life of the clutter and the negative memories.
I was the most productive when I didn’t think about the item or the piece of mail or the picture. In time, I got to where I could look at it and decide ditch or donate without having any influx of emotion at all.
This emotionless luxury came only after I realized that I already had everything I needed and/or wanted, so I didn’t need to keep any of that “stuff”. That was truly liberating day!
Here are 7 pointers to deal with anxiety, regardless of the originating pain point:
- Ignoring it is not an option. We must face it in order to move past it.
- Declare you are not a victim. You cannot grow with a victim mentality.
- Declare you’re ready for resilience. You can handle anything life throws at you. Decide this and declare it.
- Make a goal to only touch it once. For paper items that you know can be immediately released, put them directly into a cross blade shredder to eliminate as well as experience a cathartic outlet.
- Engage in an uplifting healthy experience to clear your head. Put on a positive song that positively impacts you…move around to burn off the flood of emotional chemicals. This may sound silly but moving always helps.
- Slow deep breathing. Attach a positive to activity to override after the stressful act…recite out loud an inspirational poem, spiritual text, or personally created manifesto for your life.
- Laugh. Go out of your way to make someone else smile. The feelings you get will be completely positive and uplifting
You know how passionate I am about rituals and structures and how they absolutely set us free. I encourage you to look into the process of a reboot. It’s totally free. All it takes is an open mind to clear the slate and reset your future.
I found the reboot process so overwhelmingly life-changing. Regardless of your situation, I believe a fresh outlook and a refreshed body & mind positively impact anyone!
And positively impacting others is one of my personal core values. Feel free to reach out I can help you with anything.
After all, Life is a Gift!
30 years of strategic, entrepreneurial business growth along with two brushes with death have earned him the tag “ResilienceGuy”. Bill Douglas is an accomplished Mentor, Coach & Speaker helping entrepreneurs & executives with growth and strength.