10 Tips To Stop Anx­i­ety In Its Tracks ......

Mind ex­pert, Brian Costello, shares his top tips on how to re­duce anx­i­ety quickly

No. 1 Magazine - - CONTENTS -


Do you find your­self strug­gling to re­mem­ber things? Whether it’s a friend’s birth­day, col­lect­ing a delivery or where you left your car keys, many of us strug­gle with for­get­ful­ness. A com­mon cause of mem­ory loss (not re­lated to wider health con­cerns) is over­load­ing the brain. Did you know we can ac­tu­ally only hold 5-9 thoughts in our mind at any one time? Try­ing to fo­cus your at­ten­tions on too many things at once (which us women are par­tic­u­larly guilty of ) can leave you feel­ing over­whelmed and anx­ious. An easy way to ‘empty’ your mind is to write ev­ery­thing down – this process will help clear your thoughts and al­low you to see more clearly what you need to fo­cus on right now.


The small­est prob­lems we put off tack­ling be­cause they aren’t ur­gent are ac­tu­ally the ones most likely to cause anx­i­ety. Whether it’s the dish­washer need­ing fixed, book­ing a den­tist ap­point­ment, or that pesky peel­ing piece of wall­pa­per that’s been bug­ging you for ages, the small prob­lems that we tol­er­ate are the most dan­ger­ous be­cause they ex­ac­er­bate our feel­ings of stress when the big­ger prob­lems come along. They also have a habit of mount­ing up which again, can lead to feel­ing over­whelmed. Try to tackle things as and when they need done.

3 ARE YOU A BIT OF A FIDGET? Of­ten if you ob­serve some­one that is feel­ing anx­ious you will no­tice they are prone to fid­get­ing and their breath­ing will be un­even. This is a di­rect re­sult of the adren­a­line cours­ing through their body. The quick­est way to com­bat these feel­ings is to con­trol your breath­ing. Con­cen­trate on the breath – take a long breath in, hold for three sec­onds and ex­hale slowly. Do this 10 times and if you find your mind wan­der­ing, pull it back and con­cen­trate.


Many of us use our mo­bile phones for re­as­sur­ance, we can find our­selves mind­lessly scrolling on so­cial net­work­ing, or through news and email apps. But mo­biles, TV and lap­tops all con­tribute to our minds be­ing over stim­u­lated. We force our minds to ab­sorb all this unim­por­tant minu­tiae and over­load it. Try and place your phone some­where out of reach when you don’t need it and in­stead in­dulge in some re­lax­ing ‘you’ time in­stead. Have a bath or read a book.


It’s dif­fi­cult to re­ally take this on board but feel­ings of anx­i­ety are a di­rect re­sult of our thoughts, we think some­thing neg­a­tive and log­i­cally our mind re­sponds by alert­ing our ‘dan­ger’ senses. Your thoughts be­come feel­ings. (If you are in any doubt of this fact, take a mo­ment and try to vi­su­alise a lemon. When you do so, your mouth wa­ters. You thought of some­thing and your body re­sponded phys­i­cally – you felt your mouth wa­ter.) So if you think of some­thing neg­a­tive your body re­sponds with a phys­i­cal feel­ing such as anx­i­ety or fear. Only you can change how you feel about neg­a­tive sit­u­a­tions and it’s by chang­ing your thought process.


You wouldn’t imag­ine that what you put in your body could pos­si­bly re­late to feel­ings of anx­ious­ness but foods and drinks that con­tain caf­feine, or lots of su­gar, all lead to us be­ing over stim­u­lated which in turn is the per­fect en­vi­ron­ment for anx­i­ety to breed.


Re­search re­veals a walk in a green space re­duces anx­i­ety and stress. A study by Stan­ford Univer­sity split par­tic­i­pants into two groups. The first half of the par­tic­i­pants walked through a green space sur­rounded by na­ture, whilst the other half strolled through an urban area. The ‘green’ group showed sig­nif­i­cant im­prove­ments in their men­tal state whilst the urban group showed no im­prove­ments.


If so there is a good chance you have de­ci­sion fa­tigue.10 years ago you would have walked into a cof­fee shop and or­dered tea or cof­fee. Now you are asked what size you’d like? What sort of beans do you want? Full fat or skim milk? Do you want to add a flavour? Do you have a loy­alty card? One trans­ac­tion can re­sult in 10 dif­fer­ent de­ci­sions that ex­haust our mind – it isn’t built to han­dle all the re­quests.


Keep­ing up ap­pear­ances is a typ­i­cal Scot­tish trait, we feel like we should keep a face on and not share our prob­lems with ev­ery man and their dog, but keep­ing up this mask is stress­ful in it­self. The truth is anx­i­ety breeds in se­cret. Con­fide in those you trust, whether it is an ex­pert or a friend. Tell them what you need from them – some­times you just need to off­load. Be care­ful who you con­fide in – if you have a friend that loves a drama or is a bit of a gos­sip, then they are not the per­fect con­fi­dante.


When peo­ple treat us badly it can leave us ex­pe­ri­enc­ing a range of emo­tions rang­ing from anx­ious­ness right through to anger. But how we deal with these dif­fi­cult peo­ple im­pacts on our own feel­ings. The key is to re­spond, but not re­tal­i­ate. If some­one be­haves badly and you re­spond with the same type of com­mu­ni­ca­tion – for ex­am­ple swear­ing, shout­ing or ac­cu­sa­tions, the sit­u­a­tion will es­ca­late. By re­spond­ing calmly and clearly you take the heat out the sit­u­a­tion and avoid those feel­ings of anx­ious­ness that of­ten de­scend af­ter a heated con­ver­sa­tion.

Brian Costello’s book Break­through: A Blue­print For Your Mind is now avail­able on Ama­zon. For more in­for­ma­tion, or to get in touch with Brian visit www.head­strongnlp.com

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