Bella Dodds

Stress + Anxiety

Integrative Health Coach

 

Anxiety: Handling Fears In A Personal Or Global Crisis

Having had anxiety I like to think of it as domino anxiety where one thought quickly jumps to the next, snow balling until a steady stream of crippling worry takes over.

Inner dialogue sounding like—

I can’t believe what happened in Paris. How can I keep my family safe against something like this? What is happening to our world? Everything is falling apart. If we take in Syrian refugees are we letting terrorists in? What if they bomb my city? And there was another mass shooting in California. The world is in total crisis. My life is already stressful. I just found out my car repair is going to cost over $900. My schedule is packed and it couldn’t come at a worse time to be without my car. I have to prepare for my presentation next week and it has to go well—I can’t loose my job—health insurance is sky-rocketing! This is nightmare. I’m so exhausted I can’t even think straight. Life feels so overwhelming. I don’t know what to do.

An anxious mind can tell a pretty debilitating story in just one minute.

For me, I didn’t even realize I had anxiety for a long time. Somewhere along the way it had crept up on me, stealthily gripping my thoughts until all my fears felt so real that being anxious became my new normal.

I would race around trying to solve every problem my mind came up with. My concerns felt legitimate and incredibly real—so I didn’t question them—I was too busy trying to make sure everything was okay.

My blessing finally came when I had enough.

I knew there had to be a better way. This wasn’t me. I wanted my life back.

Healing my anxiety was not just changing my inner thoughts, I also had to address the roots of why I had anxiety in the first place, but an essential component in how I healed myself was changing how I dealt with stress or a crisis.

When life squeezed me—I responded differently.

Instead of over-reacting I turned inward and connected to my Soul and asked myself Soul level questions to bring me into my wisdom.

I’ll share one of the processes that was very grounding in hopes it can help you too during this turbulent time.

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First Recognize and Then Stop

Anxiety feels monstrously real and in order to get your power back you need to recognize when your anxious mind is off to the races. The moment you recognize you’re spinning out—stop. It may take five minutes, it may take an hour, but the moment you recognize what is happening you immediately stop your story no matter how real it feels. (Because the solution to your problems do not lie within your fears.)

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Create Space and Connect To Your Soul

If you identify and emotionally buy into your anxious thoughts you are fueling your anxiety hundred fold. To cut the fuel off at the source you need to stop identifying with everything you are thinking and feeling and create space. I found it helpful to intuitively move all my anxious thoughts and emotions a few feet outside me, like a cloud of light that felt separate from the core and truth of me. Doing this helped me to feel more calm and I could then connect with the loving presence of my Soul more easily. Each person is unique and in your own way you can be creative in how you create space from your anxiety to become the observer.

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Getting Clarity On Fears

You then want to figure out exactly what you’re anxious about. A helpful way to get clear is to write down every anxious thought you’re telling yourself. This process in itself can be empowering because often times you may realize that you don’t actually believe everything your mind has been spewing. Seeing it written can help you to gauge if you have been exaggerating anything and it also helps you to pinpoint exactly what you are legitimately anxious about.

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Create A Truth Statement

Once you’re clear on what you’re anxious about then you create a truth statement. Saying the world is falling apart is definitely an exaggeration and equally terrifying to your body causing your biology to flood with stress hormones to give you extra energy to overcome the perceived threat. To stop this cycle and bring your mind and body back into balance—you need to think calmly, rationally and wisely.

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A truth statements could be:

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“I can’t loose my job”

Now becomes—The truth is I am actually really good at my job and I know this because people have told me I do good work. Instead of worrying about everything that could go wrong for my presentation, I am going to focus on what I have to offer and the innovative ideas I want to present. I’ll focus on offering my best work and knocking their socks off instead of wasting my energy being so hard on myself.

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“Our world is falling apart”

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Now becomes—The truth is there are over seven billion people on the planet and considering this, if I am honest, I can see that more things are working harmoniously in the world each day than are not. And even though war and terrorism are absolutely beyond horrible, maybe some good can eventually come out of all this madness? Like Malala creating a global revolution empowering children to have the right to education as a peaceful solution to combat terrorism in the future. War and violence played a role in bringing democracy and equal rights to the world and I am sure at the time people felt like the world was coming to an end then too. Maybe sometimes reality gets worse before it gets better? What ways can I contribute to being apart of the solution instead of just feeling powerless and afraid?

“With guns, you can kill terrorists. With education you can kill terrorism.”

~ Malala Yousafzai, Youngest Recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize

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Our truth statements teach us something.

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They bring us out of a state of powerlessness and back into our center and wisdom where we rise up to a higher understanding—and in shifting our perspective we feel more grounded and clear.

From this healing path anxiety and crises in the world then squeeze us not as meaningless torment, but as an opportunity that serves to wake up to our true selves and live more Soulfully. I think we could agree that the world could use more people, more now than ever before, living at the level of our Soul’s powerful love and wisdom.

‘A nation’s culture resides in the hearts and soul of its people.’

~ Mahatma Gandhi

 

Try taking 5 minutes to sit down and do this exercise on your fears—you will be surprised at how much your wise mind can calm  and ground you.

If you have any questions  please leave them in the comments below. 🙂

 

In Love and Health,

Bella x

Have you had enough of coping with your anxiety or chronic stress? Would like to get your life back? If so, click HERE and check out my Work With Me page to learn more about how you can heal yourself and improve every area of your life by doing so.

 

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4 Comments

  1. Thank You, for all you do. These writings and videos help.

    Reply
    • This is wonderful to hear. Thank you! 🙂

      Reply
  2. Thanks Bella! I t was a very useful article. Happy holidays to you.

    Reply
    • Wonderful so glad to hear! xo

      Reply

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