After our last blog on mindless spending, I realized now would be a great time to share ways to effectively respond to stress, fear, and anxiety. Sibyl shared various ways in which we exacerbate stress and financial challenges by overspending. I thought it only befitting to explain how behind most of our poor financial decisions is usually some kind of fear, stress, or a possible mood disorder such as anxiety.
Western culture has us living like worker bees and never enjoying the honey we’ve created. We are in constant connection with the world via social media and of course comparing what others have and value to our accomplishments or failures. In the midst of all this we buy things we don’t need and ascribe to happiness as buying things rather than simply being. While in this perpetual state of fear and folly we increase debt, strain or lose relationships, and possibly begin a relationship with anxiety or depression. Today I will focus on the perils of anxiety.
My work allows me to assist people suffering with anxiety and often I hear them complain about their fears of not being “enough” to everyone, especially women. They have frequent panic attacks, night terrors, sadness, and feelings of losing themselves because they are fixated on having it all and being in total control of life. My college students are petrified of failing, which is usually measured by how much money they will make before 30 yrs. old. My couples fret and argue about different preferences regarding intimacy, finances, and poor communication skills. Most of us are over worked, under paid, and at times experiencing the effects of anxiety.
How does one become anxious? Anxiety is created normally, when the body is feeling threatened or fearful. It comes in many forms and there are different types of anxiety disorders. The following types are most commonly identified by the DSMV:
Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) which is characterized by having excessive worry about everyday life. GAD consumes hours of a person’s day, making it difficult for them to function and complete ordinary tasks.
Social Anxiety Disorders (or Social Phobias) are intense fears of being in social settings. The fear is usually connected to low self- esteem and/or poor self- image. SADs are associated with panic attacks for those who are forced into social interactions.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) which is often associated with Veterans, however it can happen to anyone experiencing or witnessing any type of traumatic experience like rape, violence, car accidents, or loss of a loved one.
So how do I begin to get emotional control back? How do I find a moment to regroup/recover? Well this is what I call finding the PAUSE. When life is moving too fast, when we feel numb or disconnected, when we fear how to slow it all down the following steps will help with regulating your moods.
Breath, sounds simple but deep breathing does work. Consistent 5-minute breath work can aid in reducing stress and improve your overall mood when practiced daily. Research various breath work from Pinterest or online to allow you to calm yourself down at the onset of anxiety or a possible panic attack.
Sleep, lack of sleep intensifies anxiety. Getting less than 6 hours a night can cause anxiety, irritability, weight gain, and depression. If you struggle with getting adequate sleep try supplements for sleep like Melatonin, Valerian Root, or Holy Basil. If these don’t work, see your doctor for sleep medication.
Exercise, allows the body to purge negative mental and physical energy. Suppressing these thoughts and feelings leads to irritability, anxiety, and panic attacks. Try to exercise for 30 minutes 3 to 5 days a week. Cardio is an excellent way to emotionally purge and reset your mood.
Meditate, similar to breath work 5 to 10 minutes a day of meditation allows for emotional purging as well as ways to address your mood with a positive and clear mind. Mediation will alleviate impulsivity, fearful/negative thinking, and provide overall mental well- being.
Self-care, increase all of the above as well as include massages, day trips away from your hectic life, time with friends and family.
Mindless spending is one of many non- effective ways to address our fears, stress, and mood. However, once we’ve increased our debt and possibly strained our relationships, we’re in a worse predicament and still dealing with anxiety. Try a new and effective way to cope with your challenges and please give yourself time to implement these skills into your daily or weekly routine.
Until next time, be blessed and be brilliantly you!!
Peace and Health,