When we experience thoughts of danger, our bodies respond by emitting stress hormones. Adrenaline is quickly rushed into our bloodstream whether the danger is real, or whether we believe the danger is real. While everyone experiences thoughts of danger (real or imagined) sometimes, for people who feel it more often, more deeply, and more intensely, their bodies are constantly on the lookout for trouble and they often feel anxious.
If you are a person who experiences these types of thoughts more often then not, there are a few things you can do to understand what’s happening in your body, and to practice prevention.
Step 1. Identify Your Feelings:
e.g. Stress, Worry, Fear, Panic, Restlessness, Uneasiness, Agitation, Edginess, Nervousness
Step 2. Understand Your Thoughts - Common Thoughts Include:
I'm in danger right now.
The worst possible scenario is going to happen.
I won't be able to cope with it.
They will criticize me.
Everyone will laugh.
Step 3. Understand Your Body Response
e.g. Heart racing, Fast Breathing, Tense Muscles, Dilated Pupils, Shaking, and Sweating.
While there are a number of things you can do to manage anxiety in the moment, one step you can take now is to practice prevention. You can do this simply by practicing relaxation techniques. If you don’t understand why you should practice relaxation techniques before you feel anxious. Think about how you care for your teeth. Do you wait until you have a cavity to start brushing? Or, do you brush everyday? Most of us brush our teeth every day to prevent cavities from forming. It is the same with anxiety. If you know your thoughts and feelings associated with anxiety, and regularly practice relaxation techniques, not only do you have a better chance of identifying anxious thoughts in advance, but also you will have some tools to get you through it.