Anxiety is so common in the hectic, pressurized world we live in today. I don’t know about you, but I find that any time I open up about my struggles with anxiety to a friend or colleague, they will tell me a story about their own struggles with anxiety, whether they are related to their jobs, family, issues with self-esteem or just keeping going with the daily grind. Not to mention the impact of hormonal imbalances on our anxiety levels; the theme which I chose for the focus my last series of blog posts as I know how many of us are affected in this way.
My teenage daughter, as well as suffering from autism, also struggles with anxiety on a daily basis so I know how debilitating this condition can be and how important it is that we find strategies we can use to help ourselves and our loved ones to manage anxiety.
Using journaling is part of many talk therapy approaches but it is easy to have a go at yourself with a little guidance. If we can get a handle on anxiety, we can be in the driving seat, instead of our anxiety driving us!
How to Make and Use Your Anxiety Journal
Anxiety can cause multiple issues in your daily life and health. Some of the many health issues that anxiety can trigger are heart problems and high blood pressure. You may have already seen a doctor about the anxiety in your life, but are fearful of taking medications that simply mask the issue. If this is the case, you can try a method that has helped many people get to the root of the problem, journaling. Here is how you can create and use an anxiety journal to naturally reduce your anxiety, panic attacks and related health issues.
Setting Up Your Anxiety Journal
Anxiety journals are also called ranting journals! And we all like a good rant, right? When we feel anxiety, we usually feel a rush of emotions all at once. Some of the thoughts are chaotic while others are eerily calm. The fact is though, the thoughts and emotions are fast moving and can be overwhelming if there is no outlet.
In fact, some people find that the manic nature of anxiety and thoughts can be worse than the actual onset of anxiety itself. For this reason, there is not necessarily a real set-up or specific structure for an anxiety journal. It can simply be a lined journal that allows you to put in your thoughts as they come to you and get them out. The only thing that is usually part of the anxiety journal is a reflective area to go back and write your thoughts on that post after you have calmed down and can go back and see what the issues may have been to lead you to the anxiety to begin with. Using a section of your bullet journal is a great way to keep track of your mood over time, allowing you to identify habits and make some positive changes.
When to Use Your Anxiety Journal
You should use your anxiety journal anytime you feel an anxiety attack coming on or find yourself in the middle of an anxious feeling. This journal is as simple as that. It is supposed to be there for you in a way to allow you to rant when you need it and get the thoughts out as you need to.
How Your Anxiety Journal Will Help You
Your journal can help you in many ways by giving you an outlet for the thoughts you are having. It also allows you to see the thoughts you have and if there are any repeating thoughts or connections that could be making your anxiety worse. It is an outlet, a reflective journal, and a devotional journal in many ways. Using an anxiety journal is not the cure-all for your anxiety problems, but it can help drastically. Keep in mind it is a two-fold system.
It helps to reduce your anxiety the moment it occurs and also helps you root out the issue that triggered the anxiety to begin with. Use it for both, and on a routine basis, and you will see the difference.
Have you ever found that as soon as you talk to someone about a problem that has been going around in your head, it kind of goes away? Using a journal has a similar effect. Getting those thoughts out of your head and onto paper is really cathartic and can be enough to release those annoying worries that your stubborn monkey-mind refuses to let go of, at least for long enough to let the anxiety pass so that you can get on with day. Anyone who has suffered from anxiety will know that it is pretty powerful and unfortunately no one method will make it magically disappear! Little steps make a big difference though, so why not start an anxiety journal as one of those steps on your journey to life with less anxiety?