Releasing Anxiety


It happens. We get that notice from our boss that they want to meet, we get a letter from the utility company that we’re past due, we have a disagreement with a significant other that we are going to have to see later in the day, or any other non-clinical anxiety inducing incident that occurs throughout a given day, week or month. Here we are, stuck with the weight of something that feels so overwhelmingly powerful that we find ourselves tight in the chest, tied up in knots (not the good yoga knots), and full of non-clinical anxiety about what will or will not happen.

Of course, I would love to say that ‘living in the moment and being present’ are all you need to hear. Of course, I would like to say that you can overcome this by ‘Letting go’! OK, who am I kidding? These things aren’t so easily overcome and they aren’t so unimportant that we can just ‘let go’. So, instead, why don’t I let you know what you can do to help yourself?

That tightness in your chest? Let’s do some chest-opening yoga poses:

1. Cat/Cow pose  2. Fish pose  3. Chest expansion w/forward fold

Focus on the pose, you can come back to your worry in a minute!

Tightness starting to relax? Now, let’s move into soothing poses for our body:

1. Forward Fold  2. Child’s pose  3. Bridge pose

Focus on the pose, you can come back to your worry in a minute!

OK, the physical is starting to release, let’s work on the mind with a centering pose:

1. Easy seated pose with hands in anjali mudra  2. Balancing half-moon pose  3. Half Lord of the Fishes pose    4. Equal ratio breath

Focus on the pose, you can come back to your worry in a minute!

OK. Now that our body is soothed to some degree, and I mean, really focus on those poses! Let them twist, soothe and strengthen your body. Focus on the poses, start over with them if you need to, you can come back to your worry in a minute!

As I was saying, do the poses until you feel some of the tension in your body releasing; then, come sit down. Write out the worst case scenario. Next, write out what you could do should the worst case scenario play out. Really! Write it out! Look at it. Give yourself some options. Your worst case scenario should look something like this:

1. Boss called me into office    2. I could be reprimanded, or fired!     3. If I was fired, I could collect unemployment until I got another job. If I was reprimanded, I could change my behavior and/or actions to align more closely with what my boss wants to see out of me.  (see the options here?) And, added benefit; what if you were called in for a congratulations and find your worry was for nothing – you are golden!

Now, in this situation, I want you to think of the WORST POSSIBLE THING (WPT) because once we face that fear of the WPT, it has no longer has paralyzing power over us. If you feel that non-clinical anxiety creeping up again, come back to the poses. You don’t have to do them all, I recommend at least one in each of the categories of chest-opener, soothing pose, and centering pose. Then read what you’ve wrote again, add to it, take away from it – the point is to take some action for ourselves to relieve non-clinical anxiety and move into the right direction of feeling stable once again. Your options create your reality, step away from the WPT and give yourself a better reality. And, if you are suffering from a clinically diagnosed anxiety, please work with your doctor.

I wish the best to you in this endeavor! ~ Namaste


About yogagirlsherri

I am a 200-HR RYT certified yoga instructor. I teach vinyasa primarily but also teach seniors, yoga nidra, restorative, pranayama and meditation. I have a passion for life, all things yoga and dogs. Drop me a questions, line, comment - I'll be happy to hear from you! Namaste View all posts by yogagirlsherri

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