6 Steps for Managing Fear and Anxiety

Weíve all experienced pangs of fear and anxiety. Whether itís blowing that big job interview, worrying about lab test results from your doctor or letting your 15-year old attend a late night rave party. Whatever the reason, our bodies kick into a “fight-or-flight” response that shoots adrenaline into our bloodstream and makes us climb the walls. Jude Bijou MA MFT, respected psychotherapist, consultant, and author of “Attitude Reconstruction: a Blueprint for Building a Better Life” has developed six highly effective techniques to help you deal with fear and anxiety.

Shake it Out

When the flight-or-fight response kicks in, your heartbeat races, your breaths grow short and shallow, and your stomach gets tied up in knots. Meet your body halfway by releasing some of the energy itís built up. Shake and tremble. Put some effort into it and add some sounds if you have to. Releasing this pent up energy helps your mind refocus.

You’re OK (EGBOK)

Say this out loud: “Everythingís Going to Be OK.” Tell yourself that youíll take one thing at a time, and that you can handle whatís making you fearful or anxious. This kind of positive self-assurance does work to modify your attitude and calm your body.

Act, Donít Dwell

Fear and anxiety are things that halt action. They ball-and-chain you into sitting and dwelling on what might happen. The remedy to these arresting thoughts is action. Find out what you can do to solve the problem ó whether itís talking to someone, taking care of something youíve been neglecting, or simply learning a new coping skill ó like meditation.

Plan Donít Panic

Fears and anxieties often spring out of a need to address something that needs attention. Instead of going into panic mode, go into writing mode: jot down the things you need to do.†Prioritize and plan your course of action to get at the root of whatís making you fearful or anxious.

Get Specific

If you need to address a fear or anxiety donít start lumping all your fears into one big downer. Many people sink into a “Sky is Falling” way of thinking that prevents them from overcoming their fear or anxiety. Address the specifics of whatís causing the problem and create a plan of action that stair-steps you right over the fear or anxiety.

This is Crucial: Acknowledge Your Improvement

Praise and compliment your steps in overcoming your fear or anxiety. Donít be shy about giving yourself an attaboy, even for minor steps. As you overcome your fear and anxiety, youíll grow more resilient and push through those barriers. Your confidence and courage will grow.

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Debbie Crowe
Debbie Crowe4 years ago

I'm a nervous wreak right now. We have to go to small claims court this week and I have planned as well as I can. I've tried not to dwell on it by telling myself, 'Everything is going to be OK. I'm trying not to panic, but it's not working!

Debbie S.
Past Member 4 years ago

Very true.....don't go there

Janis K.
Janis K4 years ago

Thanks for sharing.

Connie O.
Connie O4 years ago

Very difficult at times, and especially if the fear is for a family member.

Aaron Bouchard
Aaron Bouchard4 years ago

Thank you

4 years ago

Fear and anxiety are only as debilitating as a person allows them to be.
We all have to remember that WE are the ONLY ones who have control over OURSELVES. If you can't deal with life without worry and anxiety, then what is it that you're doing incorrectly? and how can you change that?
It CAN be done and it DOES work! I'm proof of that. I was an A level worrier...and when I really thought about what a useless waste of time and energy it was, I changed my thinking and stopped worrying.
I know I can handle whatever comes my way, and I live consciously aware that I am in charge of my feelings and only I can be responsible for my thoughts, actions, feelings and behaviour. Life is what you make of it.
Life is beautiful if you want it to be.

Fi T.
Past Member 4 years ago

It's all about how we think

Dale O.

Very true, Barbara L.

I am starting to already think that despite the very hot and extremely humid summer, the very cold and freezing Canadian winter is lurking around the corner...in a few months. The thought of all that snow and ice is not a major thrill, lol.

Luna starr
luna starr4 years ago

Anxiety is inherited and learned from parents alot of times; It is HELL

Chloe R.
Chloe R4 years ago

Thanks for sharing