Anxiety habits are self-destructive behaviors that take their toll over time. These seemingly harmless lifestyle patterns eventually become hazardous to our health and well-being.
are you stressed because of these anxiety habits?
- Staying Inside All Day.
- Hanging out with Anxious Types.
- Running Behind Schedule.
- Drinking Too Much Caffeine.
- Getting Overwhelmed at Work.
- Eating an Abundance of Sugar.
- Listening to Sad Music.
- Not Getting Enough Sleep.
- Complaining All Day Long.
- Forgetting to Exercise.
- Not Cleaning Your House or Apartment.
I don’t know about you, but I’ve been guilty of EVERYTHING on that list at one time or another!
However, if you’re engaging in any of these on a regular or DAILY basis, these are anxiety habits adding undue stress to your life. The good news is, habituated patterns can be unlearned and replaced with something better.
Let’s shed light on some options that you might not have thought about. What are the “secrets” to overcoming anxiety habits?
Solutions for Anxiety Habits
Here are my actionable, “quick tips” for overcoming anxiety habits. These are simple strategies that you can implement right away! Tease out the suggestions that work for YOUR situation!
1. Staying Inside All Day
- Take a Walk Around the Block during work breaks. You DO take breaks, right? Take evening walks at the beach, a lake, or a nearby park.
- Schedule Face to Face Dinners at a restaurant with a relative or good friends at least once a week.
- Take Vacations and Road Trips EVERY Year. SCHEDULE IT, because it won’t happen by itself.
2. Hanging Out with Anxious Types
Hanging around with anxious people will fuel your own anxiety issues. You don’t need to shun anyone, but you can certainly upgrade your options here.
- Hang Out with Easygoing Types. Think of people that you already know that have a calm, non-reactive demeanor. Reconnect. Try to model their easygoing personality traits. Spending more time with calming personas will certainly rub off on you.
- Take Classes with a Calming Influence. Art, Meditation, and Yoga classes are good choices.
- Expand Your Circle of Friends with Meetup Groups. Find new friends that will have a beneficial effect on your personal growth.
3. Running Behind Schedule
- NEVER Use the Snooze Button. Put your alarm on the other side of the room so you HAVE to get out of bed.
- Plan on Arriving 15 Minutes EARLY. Don’t just be “on time,” be EXCEPTIONAL.
- Hang Your Car Keys on a Hook Next to the Door. Make this a habit, and you’ll never have to search for your keys again.
- The True Cost of Commuting. If your commute to work is longer than 20 minutes, MOVE, or CHANGE JOBS. I’m not kidding. Time spent in anxiety inducing traffic is adding up to more time and dollars than you think.
4. Drinking Too Much Caffeine
It’s believed that caffeine can be a stimulus for anxiety and panic disorders. If you tend to be an anxious person, excessive caffeine can be one of the most risky anxiety habits.
- Consider Switching to Green Tea. It is caffeinated, but some people respond to tea more favorably than coffee.
- Avoid Weight Loss Supplements. They’re often loaded with caffeine and stimulants.
- Avoid so-called “Energy Drinks.” These are also loaded with caffeine and stimulants. Many contain outrageous amounts of SUGAR.
- Drink MORE Water! Fatigue is one of the first signs of dehydration. My personal habit is to drink at least three liters of pure water every day.
- Get More QUALITY Sleep. Don’t use coffee as a substitute for getting the sleep you need for health and recovery.
5. Getting Overwhelmed at Work
Step back and take a look at how you’re organizing your time and work priorities. Here’s a great book to get you on the right track:
From Amazon: There just isn’t enough time for everything on our “To Do” list—and there never will be. Successful people don’t try to do everything. They learn to focus on the most important tasks and make sure they get done.
Eat That Frog! shows you how to zero in on these critical tasks and organize your day. You’ll not only get more done faster, but get the right things done.
6. Eating an An Abundance of Sugar
Avoid sugar for the same reasons you avoid HEROIN. It’s bad news, and it’s addictive!
Yep- Scientists are now finding evidence that sugar is an ADDICTIVE substance. You know, like crack cocaine.
Refined sugar and carbohydrates are linked to anxiety and depression:
4 Ways Sugar Could Be Harming Your Mental Health.
Wake Up! Come to terms with the genuine dangers of sugar and artificial sweeteners. Read Sugar Blues. You may get angry and disgusted enough to drop the sugar habit, like I did.
Banish Sugar Cravings. Did you know that cigarettes are loaded with sugar? Why do you think tobacco companies put it there? Sugar is an addictive substance. Try Meridian Tapping therapy to resolve the cravings. It works!
Start Eating REAL Food. World renowned Fitness guru Jack LaLanne was known for saying, “If man made it, don’t eat it.”
Need motivation? Watch the Fed Up movie on Netflix. Here’s the trailer:
7. Listening to Sad Music
Listening to sad music because you’re sad will make you feel worse, not better.
- How Would you LIKE to Feel? Use a music service like Pandora or Spotify to create playlists that reflect the positive emotions you’d LIKE to manifest. Through the process of entrainment, your emotions will shift to the mood of the new music.
- Get Up and Move Around! Make a massive shift in your physical state. This is a very effective strategy to use whenever you feel anxious or depressed. It’s actually impossible to be depressed when you’re dancing around like a maniac. Don’t worry, no one’s watching.
8. Not Getting Enough Sleep
The majority of adults who report excessive stress or anxiety also say they have trouble sleeping.
It’s easy to get agitated and to make poor choices when you’re sleep deprived. Optimizing your sleep potential is one of the most important elements for health and peak performance.
- At Least One Hour Before Bedtime, completely avoid electronics of all types. This includes watching TV and using a computer, smartphone, or iPad. These devices delay the production of melatonin, a natural hormone that controls your sleep cycle. For reading before bedtime, make it an old school book with PAPER pages.
- Go to Bed Earlier. This naturally becomes quite easy when you remove the stimulus of electronic distractions.
- Make the Bedroom a Sanctuary Exclusively for Sleeping. Don’t work or pay bills in your bedroom. If there’s a TV or desk in the bedroom, get rid of it!
- Get Blackout Curtains, and make sure your room is completely dark at night. No alarm clock LEDs or anything. Make it so dark that you can’t see your hand in front of your face. I picked up some blackout curtains at a Walmart.
- Use Hypnosis for Insomnia if you have trouble falling asleep, or staying asleep. The trance state is a part of your normal sleep cycle, so it makes sense to improve the quality of your sleep with this natural, drug free method.
9. Complaining All Day Long
Complaining won’t lead to happiness. It only provides fuel for anger and resentment. There’s NO upside to complaining. It pushes people away and makes you unhappy.
When you complain, the brain releases stress hormones that actually INHIBIT problem solving and other cognitive functions.
- Avoid Chronic Complainers. Some people use complaining as a way of social bonding. Don’t be one of them.
- Put Yourself on a Media Diet. NEVER watch or listen to the news. Avoid the mental masturbation of political discussions. Become genuinely interested in the people that are right in front of you.
- Be Part of the Solution. Every time you catch yourself complaining, finish with this tail ender phrase, “…and here’s what I’m going to do about this…”
- Get Some “Tough Love.” Make a deal with a close friend that you’ll pay them $1 on the spot every time they catch you complaining. Be prepared with a big stack of dollar bills, because you’re going to need them in the beginning! You’ll quickly become free of the complainer habit.
- Choose a New Narrative. Instead of focusing on what could go wrong, be vocally grateful for all the things that are going right. This is a powerful choice that can change your life, and you’ll be more fun to have around. Play a game where you imagine it’s as if the universe is conspiring to line everything up in your favor.
- Learn to Forgive. When you find yourself judging someone, remember that you don’t know their story or what’s going on in their life. Ask yourself, “Would I accuse MYSELF of that?”
10. Forgetting to Exercise
The most common excuse for not exercising is, “I don’t have time.” Billionaire Richard Branson finds the time to get it done, and he’s probably quite busy running all his companies. We all share the same 24 hours in a day, so it’s really a personal choice of how you set your priorities.
Secret #1: Exercise FIRST THING in the Morning: Let’s be honest. If you don’t exercise first thing, it might not happen later in the day.
Secret #2: Achieving a High Level of Fitness Does NOT Require Hours in the Gym. With the right exercises, it only takes minutes, and you don’t even need to leave the house!
Exercise Solutions (in order of increasing difficulty):
Mini Trampoline in Front of the TV. Do five minutes on the trampoline every time you turn on the television. It’s a very energizing and effective cardiovascular exercise. I’ve also got a trampoline in my home office.
Develop the Shower Pushups Habit. You can get VERY strong doing body weight exercises like pushups, pull-ups, and deep knee bends. The problem is remembering to do them, so you need to create an automatic trigger. Do you ever forget to shower? Of course not! Every time you take a shower, do pushups, every time. No pushups, no shower!
Do the Seven Minute Workout. Who can’t spare 7 minutes? You’ll blow throw 12 different exercises using only your bodyweight, a wall, and a chair. It’s intense! There’s a very cool 7 Minute Workout app available for your Smartphone or iPad.
Kick-Ass with Kettlebell Swings. Want to burn fat and get into killer shape? Three five-minute workouts per week is all it takes!
11. Not Cleaning Your House or Apartment
Have you ever told someone they can’t come over/come in because your home is a mess? Are you letting a messy home in disrepair stress you out and interfere with your personal relationships?
- Pay Someone to Clean Your House and Mow Your Lawn. Why do work you despise when other people would be happy to do it for a reasonable fee? You’ve got better things to do with your weekend! If you’re self employed, this frees up time for you to grow your business.
- Make Your Bed Every Morning. Start your day with a feeling of accomplishment while enjoying the calming effects of a decluttered space. People who make their beds are happier and more successful.
- Become a Minimalist. Less Stuff = Less Stress. You can live a RICH life with less stuff.
Have you got any other tips, tricks, and solutions for overcoming anxiety habits and living a more stress-free life? I’d love to hear about them!
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