Coping with Stress & Anxiety
Constructive Strategies to Implement
- Keep physically active.
- Get adequate rest and sleep.
- Eat balanced, nutritious meals as regularly as you can.
- Try to build some pleasure and fun into each day.
- Allow yourself to experience your feelings.
- Talk to people you trust about how you are feeling and why.
- Keep a journal or use another means of self-expression like art or music.
- Pay attention to what you are thinking. Identify and challenge distorted, negative self-talk. Don’t obsess. Don’t catastrophize. Think positively in a realistic way.
- Practice deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, imagery, yoga, or meditation.
- Draw upon your spiritual beliefs; make time for spiritual practices that you find meaningful.
- Listen to music that you find relaxing.
- Seek time to be alone when you need it, but don’t withdraw or avoid.
- Problem solve about the situations that are causing you the most stress and anxiety. Discuss these situations with others who can help you think them through.
- Seek support from positive people.
- Tenaciously hang onto your sense of humor.
Destructive Strategies to Avoid
- Using alcohol or drugs to try to diminish anxiety.
- Overeating or eating lots of junk food.
- Channeling your stress and anxiety into anger; taking your anger out on others.
- Obsessive worry about the sources of your stress.
- Withdrawal; avoidance.