Our mind is extremely powerful. After experiencing debilitating anxiety attacks in the winter of 2019, I completely comprehend how just our thoughts that we allow to enter into our mind play a major role in the intensity of anxiety.
You guys, my anxiety was so traumatic, I was afraid to be in my home by myself due to fear of experiencing another attack. I had to lie on my floor and listen to calming music while inhaling lavender essential oil.
There were days when I sat over a relative’s house in order to be watched due to fear of experiencing an anxiety attack. Even the word anxiety, whenever I would hear it, gave me anxiety!
I tried everything to stop the suffering and the only thing that genuinely worked for me was calming and silencing my mind, changing my thought patterns, focusing on living in the present instead of the past, and looking forward to new things/experiences that I perceived as rewarding or blissful.
These methods that I have compiled are tried and true and I hope that it helps you as much as it has helped me. After reading this post, leave your comments below and SHARE to your favorite social media platform, especially if you find this information to be valuable.
Let’s help give other anxiety and depression sufferers some relief with this FREE resource.
Below, I will provide you with 7 things to consider during an anxiety attack or depressive mode, which will be followed by 7 positive affirmations for anxiety and depression.
So let’s get right into it!
1. Get to the root of your anxiety.
Oxford’s dictionary defines anxiety as:
a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome.Oxford Languages
Anxiety in and of itself is a normal emotion that we all face throughout our lifetime. It becomes a problem or a disorder whenever a person is unable to lead a healthy lifestlye due to sudden episodic anxiety attacks.
What seems to be triggering you? Anxiety comes from worries and fears. And often, our fears as adults lead right back to a traumatic event from our childhood or a more recent traumatic event that was completely unexpected.
During the time that I was experiencing frequent anxiety attacks, I was growing through hurtful events in a relationship. I felt tremendous loss and abandonment. But what I had to learn was the root of my abandonment pain came from having an absent father. This pain was triggered by hurtful events as an adult.
In order to heal this childhood wound, I had to come to grips with the reality that my father could not be present in my life (in a healthy way) due to his painful traumas from his childhood, which led him to an adult lifestyle that was extremely challenging.
My father had to grow through his own challenges and mental health disparities, so he couldn’t possibly be present in my life as a child. I had to forgive him and release the desire to punish him or hold a grudge.
What this did was set me free from expectations. It kept me from waiting in hope and desperation as that young girl that would one day have a loving father to walk me down the aisle during my wedding. I had to grieve the loss of the relationship so that I could end all internal suffering.
Once I accomplished this, I began to affirm to myself every rising that abandonment is an illusion. I am never alone.
The feeling of a person abandoning us is extremely hurtful, ESPECIALLY when it is a caregiver or intimate partner. It leaves us feeling undesirable, lonely, not good enough, etc.
As a young girl, it made me question my worth by not being accepted by my father. Because of this, I spiraled into codependent relationships with intimate partners and I was extremely clingy. This energy that I had only manifested more abandonment, because the clingy energy reeks of helplessness and desperation and it’s too much for an average person to tolerate long term.
Abandonment pain is NOT an illusion. The emotional pain is very real. However, the scenarios we place in our mind of someone walking out of our life or refusing to interact with us (abandonment) IS an illusion. And I’ll explain why.
Think of your circle of support as valence electrons and ionic bonding in chemistry. You can learn more in depth about this science here.
To sum it all up, atoms constantly lose or gain electrons and become ions in order to gain stability.
We fathom in our mind that this one single entity is the ONLY person allowed to serve a certain role in our life. Yes, we are born with a set of biological parents, but their role as caregivers can be replaced if that is what is required in order for us to remain stable. And that is okay.
And the same is true for an intimate partner, platonic relationship, or other people who serve a particular role in our journey. Their presence is significant while they are a bond to our journey. However, if they make a choice to leave, we do not have to perceive that exit as abandonment. When we choose to label their exit as abandonment, it creates hurtful emotions of sadness, anger, and/or loneliness.
We must release this mindset to end suffering. Think of other humans in your circle who are still PRESENT. You are not alone!
If that person was the only person in your circle, then that loss will trigger an attraction (similar to the science of valence electrons) to help us continue our journey. We were not designed to be alone. Although this time period may be challenging, it is temporary.
I have a spiritual understanding of my existence based on personal unexplainable encounters. So for me, I know that there are benevolent guides that accompany and protect me during my journey.
To ease your anxiety, find what works for you and your spirit. If spirituality is something that you practice, this is a beautiful reminder that you are never alone.
However, if you are not a fan of spirituality, this affirmation STILL works for you, because this earth is filled with millions of bodies that share similar experiences with you. So you are never alone!
I would suggest finding a support group of people who have dealt with the same things that you may have experienced as a child or are experiencing currently. Support groups offer a more visual confirmation that a person is not alone in their struggles and it introduces the idea of accountability persons.
The 1st affirmation is this:
I AM NEVER ALONE. ABANDONMENT IS AN ILLUSION. I AM SAFE IN MY BODY. AND IF I DO FIND MYSELF IN SOLIDARITY, I HAVE HOPE THAT I WILL ATTRACT SOMEONE TO ACCOMPANY ME ON MY JOURNEY.
2. Practice awareness and think realistic thoughts.
One of the things that an EMT told me is you have to remember that someone else always has it worst. And that is not to minimize your situation or to make it seem as if your problems don’t matter, suck it up. This is just a way to remind yourself that someone else went through a worst situation and came out on top, SO YOU CAN TOO! And you will get through this! And you are not alone!
Recently, I learned of a technique called EFT, which stands for Emotional Freedom Technique. Gary Craig, who is the originator of this practice, states that a disruption in energy is the cause of all negative emotions and pain.
How does EFT tapping work?
If you think of e-motion as energy in motion, this idea will become more clear. Your thoughts start in your brain and can activate the amygdala, which helps to coordinate an emotional response. Tapping certain pressure points help to disrupt the signals that are being sent to your brain.
This is the key to recognizing you can actually have a strong influence on your anxiety just by rewiring your thoughts, a preventative practice of mindfulness that can stop anxiety and worrisome thoughts before it begins.
Whenever you feel that strong sense of worry, panic, or anxiousness coming over you, simply breathe deeply and remember that your thoughts of optimism can reduce the fight or flight response.
The 2nd affirmation is:
I REFUSE TO LIVE MY LIFE IN FEAR. I WILL ENJOY EVERY DAY OF MY LIFE AND MAKE THE MOST OUT OF EACH DAY.
3. Set your intentions every rising to LIVE.
This time that we are in on the planet is extremely triggering. Let’s just be real. For most of us, we are unsure if a loved one will become ill from COVID-19 and possibly succumb to the disease. We are unsure if businesses will be shut down without notice again, possibly impacting our income. We may be unsure if life will ever go back to what it was prior to the pandemic.
But, if we’re being realistic, we face similar uncertainties every day even without the COVID-19 threat. Every time we start our vehicle, we are at risk of getting into a vehicle crash. Every time we depart from our loved ones, there’s a chance we may not make it back home to see them.
The cliché saying of Live everyday as if it is your last, I look at it as a reminder to make peace with what is. Do not be anxious about the future or worry about the past. Just exist in the now and live each moment as it comes.
I look at my husband’s grandmother as the strongest woman I know, and I truly mean this. His grandmother is 80 years young and has lost 2 sons and 2 husbands during her lifetime. One son passed away on her birthday while the other son, my husband’s father, passed away on our anniversary.
Witnessing her excitement with being amongst family is a testament that even through loss, it is still possible to find something to look forward to. I’m not exactly sure what gives her purpose, but her purpose in my life has been extremely helpful. With the amount of heartbreak she has experienced and she STILL is able to live day to day, then I know my problems, heartaches, and dissatisfactions are diminutive.
The 3rd affirmation is this:
I CHOOSE TO SEE ALL CHALLENGES AS LESSONS. NO MATTER HOW UNCOMFORTABLE I AM WITH CHANGES, I LOOK FORWARD TO THE NEXT DAY. MY EXPERIENCES GIVE ME PURPOSE. AS LONG AS I AM ALIVE, I WILL EXERCISE MY PURPOSE.
4. Accept change and release the things that you cannot control.
Overthinking is probably the main culprit to anxiety. Overanalyzing scenarios in an effort to control an outcome won’t lead you to a desired result. Planning out each possible outcome like a mathematician won’t lead you to a desired outcome.
Life is much simpler when you go with the flow and allow things that are not within your control to just BE.
Change is literally in the word challenge.
If CHANGE came to us as a sweet elderly lady gifting us with a hot Sunday Soul Food plate (for my southerners) or some homemade peach cobbler, then how likely would it be that we would actually shift?
Comfort food is named as it is for a reason! It’s comforting and comfortable! And with the nature of human beings, we aren’t motivated to change when things are kosher.
Therefore, one of the uncomfortable realizations about life is this…..Changes will be challenging! And that’s okay! When you accept this mode of operation in your every day walk of life, those challenges will become less triggering and you will find optimism in almost any circumstance.
I RELEASE THE IDEA THAT I MUST CONTROL EVERYTHING IN ORDER FOR MY LIFE TO BE PROSPEROUS. I WILL FLOW GENTLY WITH THE WINDS OF CHANGE. I WILL OVERCOME ALL OBSTACLES.
5. Take control of your wellness.
They say that knowledge is power and knowledge makes us unfit to be slaves. This saying applies to your health and wellness and I will tell you how.
Most U.S. citizens will run full force to a doctor for any kind of ailment before they trust their own ability to heal themselves. And I get it. We have so many advanced methods of controlling disease, it’s kind of inconvenient to practice long-term holistic methods of healing. Curing a headache with herbal remedies isn’t just a quick fix, it’s a lifestyle. However, you can take a Tylenol to ease the symptoms of a headache and it works in less than 10 minutes sometimes.
Many of us live in constant fear that an illness will somehow creep upon our body and take us out. A lot of it is due to COVID-19 and its unexpected arrival into our reality.
With the coronavirus, ask yourself if you have done the proper research to understand exactly what this virus does to your body.
- Do you know what a virus is? Is the coronavirus a foreign disease or did you just hear it on the news and ran with it?
- Why does this strain of coronavirus affect the airways?
- Do you know about the hormone vitamin D and how a deficiency in vitamin D can keep our body from fighting off pathogens properly?
- What about vitamin C or vitamin A? How do these vitamins help our immune system?
- What can you do to ASSIST your immune system just in case you do become ill?
All of these questions can be answered with a simple Google search. Multiple peer-reviewed articles have been written and approved by medical doctors on these very topics.
You can easily take these concerns to your primary care doctor, through telehealth or an in-person visit, and voice your thoughts.
With proper research, you can ask your doctor all the right questions that will lead you to a more healthier approach with life. This will give you daily confidence that no matter what illness may befall upon you, you have the ability to fight that illness when you power your body with the right nutrients.
Here are just a few resources to help ease the fear of COVID-19.
When it pertains to your wellness, you must take it serious and know that all is not lost just because you have been diagnosed with an illness or disease.
The 5th affirmation is:
MY HEALTH IS MY RESPONSIBILITY. I AM NOT A VICTIM TO ILLNESS. I WILL CHOOSE WELLNESS AT ALL TIMES.
6. Practice Mindfulness and be optimistic.
As I described in my Mindfulness Monday post, out of the 2,000 things that go wrong in our life, we have at least 3-4 things that we can actually say went well for us.
Try to shift your focus on the positive things that you can look forward to each day. If that is, “I’m thankful to be able to generate income during this time” Or “I’m thankful that my immediate family members and I are healthy” Or “I’m thankful for clean running water. I’m thankful to be able to choose my meals every day.” These small things that we take for granted, someone else isn’t so fortunate to have.
Whenever a fear or worry enters into your mind, quickly shift your focus to these small things that you can look forward to each day.
During Air Force Basic Training, the mental statement I had to continuously tell myself was this: Mind over Matter. MIND OVER MATTER. Your mind will either be your ally or your enemy. If you feed it negative thoughts, then you will experience negativity. If you feed it optimistic thoughts, then even in unfavorable conditions, your experiences won’t take you under.
Choose to be free of suffering by not allowing your mind to wander into a sea of worst case scenarios.
The 6th affirmation is:
I CONTROL THE PERSPECTIVE OF MY DAY. DURING UNCERTAINTIES, I WILL CHOOSE FREEDOM OVER FEAR.
7. Be Open to speaking with a counselor or therapist to sort through your difficulties.
One of the bravest things that I did in my lifetime, besides giving birth to 3 beautiful babies, was reaching out to a therapist for help.
I say that this was the bravest step for me, because being a very strong-willed individual, I’ve always believed that I can handle life’s challenges on my own using spiritual concepts and just thinking positive! But there came a certain milestone in my life where those tools weren’t working a whole lot.
I personally needed someone to talk to about the challenges I was facing. Because I was accustomed to telling my family and close friends my personal business and it backfiring, I decided this time around to seek professional counseling from someone who had a personal duty to not disclose my information to anyone else. And it was the best decision of my life.
As of April 2021, I have been attending therapy for almost 1 year through a free Veterans’ counseling service. I actually have access to a family counselor and a personal therapist. Topics related to my struggles range from dealing with postpartum anxiety and stress, marital counseling, conflict management, digging into childhood rearing that influenced my decisionmaking, etc.
The consistency of sessions have reduced my anxiety significantly! I still have personal work to do in this area of my life, but without therapy, I believe my struggles would be much worse. My counselors do a great job with giving me realistic approaches to coping. I love that my counselors hold me accountable for any self-sabotaging or overthinking that I may be contributing to my anxiety. It helps me to realize that a certain level of anxiety relief is within my control with my thoughts.
I am an advocate for therapy! If you have access to FREE therapy, please take advantage of it! It can literally save your life, because persistent untreated anxiety and depression can take a toll on your body physically.
If you are unable to access free therapy, check out some other resources on a previous published blog post by clicking the link below.
I also recommend following up with a primary care physician so that blood work can be done to see if your anxiety is linked to a nutritional deficiency. Most times, a deficiency in iron, folate, vitamin d, and B vitamins are at the culprit for anxiety and depression.
You can read more about that in the links below.
The 7th affirmation for taking control of your anxiety and depression is this:
IT IS OKAY TO ASK FOR HELP WHEN LIFE OVERWHELMS ME. I AM NOT ALONE IN MY STRUGGLE. MANY OTHER HUMANS HAVE GROWN THROUGH THEIR CHALLENGES AND I WILL ALSO. THE STRENGTH THAT IS WITHIN ME IS MORE POWERFUL THAN THE ENERGY OF ANXIETY OR DEPRESSION.
The biggest thing to remember is that you are not crazy, a weirdo, or battling something that is too hard to be corrected or managed. I promise you are not alone in your struggle. There are other humans on the planet whose life purpose is to be of assistance to you in your journey. We have doctors and professionals who ENJOY doing their job. Your challenges are not a burden to them.