Everyone deals with changes in their lives. While some changes are positive, others can be uncomfortable or difficult. For some, change may bring up feelings of uncertainty or anxiety. If you find yourself in a time of transition or know that change is coming, try this writing activity to help you manage anxiety.
This activity will help you:
- Cope with anxiety that may arise from a change in your life
- Prepare for an upcoming change
- Create a tangible reminder of how to manage anxiety in the future
Have a piece of paper handy and a pen. Write the numbers 1 through 4 on the paper and follow these prompts.
- Your identity - What do you stand for? What are your greatest strengths? Choose three words that best describe your core values. Allow these core values to guide you throughout this change, especially when making decisions. Examples of values include: honesty, kindness, and resilience. Write your three words down to remind yourself who you are.
- Your anxiety triggers - If you have gone down the anxiety spiral before, try to remember what prompted the anxiety. Was it a busy time at work? Traffic? Time with extended family? What could have brought about the anxiety? These specific situations, otherwise known as triggers, can cause your anxiety. Take a moment now to write down any known triggers. Knowing your triggers can be quite empowering.
- Your physical response - Take a moment to explore how anxiety shows up in your body. Some common physical responses can include headaches, blurry vision, tension, heart racing, and sweating. How does anxiety manifest in your body. When you make an effort to acknowledge the physical signs of anxiety, you can strive to detect it, feel it, and move through it. Write down those sensations that are true for you.
- Your coping strategies - Being adaptable can help you through unexpected or uncomfortable changes. Adaptability means having coping mechanisms handy when/if anxiety presents itself. What are some coping skills that you have tried in the past that have worked for you? Are there any you have considered trying? Coping mechanisms that tend to work for some people include listening to music, breathing, grounding, drinking water, going outside, and just counting. Now, write down three coping strategies that you’d like to try in the future when change arises.
Congratulations! You’ve created a micro anxiety-reduction plan. Put your paper in a place that is easily accessible and/or take a picture of it to keep in your phone. Now exhale and feel a sense of relief in this moment. You did a great job! If you want to discuss any of these prompts with or want tailored support for your anxiety further, reach out to your Ginger coach.