Anxiety is normal and everyone struggles through symptoms at some point in their lives. Anxiety can, at times, be positive (it motivates us to do well on a test, urges us to communicate with others, etc.). But, for some, anxiety can become exhausting when it starts to fill our heads with worrisome thoughts more often than not. Our teen clients dealing with anxiety have said it can feel like:
“I’m worried people will judge me and think I am dumb if I say what I’m thinking.”
“I always have that feeling that something bad is about to happen, even if it never does.”
“I’m constantly criticizing myself no matter what I’m doing.”
“My mind just spins and spins. I can’t stop thinking about things. Even the littlest thing will make me worry.”
“Anxiety is torture. Once it starts, I feel like I am going to have a heart attack. Sometimes I cry because I just want it to pass.”
Anxiety disorders are diagnosable when more of your day is spent thinking anxious thoughts than non-anxious thoughts. This might look like spiral thinking where you can’t stop thinking about something and it begins to give you physical symptoms such as an upset stomach, pounding in the chest, sweating, and difficulty breathing. Some people even say that they feel like they are going to have a heart attack.
Yep, that’s how I’m feeling…So, how do I deal?
Try the 4x4x4 deep breathing technique. Take four deep breaths that fill your lungs completely. Hold the air in your lungs for four seconds and release for four seconds. Repeat four times.
Write out your emotions in a journal or in your phone. Releasing the spiraling thoughts helps to calm the mind.
EXERCISE! Move your body, go for a walk, shake it out of you!!!
Talk to someone that you trust or seek out a counselor at myHealth for Teens & Young Adults.
Anxiety can be painful, but it’s common and can be managed. If you or someone you know are dealing with anxiety and want help, please contact a counselor at myHealth for Teens & Young Adults for assistance.