Anxiety can feel like a blanket, only instead of comforting you, it suffocates you. It can feel heavy, dark, isolating, and can leave you wondering if it will ever leave. Although anxiety may feel like it is consuming your life, there are practices you utilize to intentionally and mindfully soften the weight that anxiety brings to experience freedom.
Naming what you are feeling, especially when you are in the thick of it, can feel difficult. Yet naming your emotions can begin to soften the weight of that feeling. Perhaps you begin to bring awareness to your body in moments you are feeling the weight of anxiety, and practicing naming the anxiety to tame it. This could be as simple as recognizing that you are feeling anxious or as complex as naming what is causing the anxiety.
Externalizing the Emotion
One component of narrative therapy—a common treatment for mental health disorders—is the practice of externalizing the emotions you are feeling. This can allow you to process the emotion and return to your core self instead of taking on the emotion, such as anxiety, as an identity. Externalizing anxiety can also help you cultivate awareness about the fact that you are not the anxiety and that anxiety is not you.
Breathing Into Anxiety
One of the first things you lose when feeling anxious is contact with your breath. Anxiety can cause you to hold your breath and escape into your mind, where overthinking is present. This causes you to be out of your body, where presence is felt.
In choosing to return to your body through mindful breathing, you can allow yourself to acknowledge that anxiety is present while moving past it. This can be powerful to envision yourself breathing into the anxiety itself to create safety in feeling it.
Relief from anxiety begins by shifting your relationship with the way you experience anxiety. Practices like naming the emotion, externalizing feelings, and breathing into anxiety can create freedom in both your body and thoughts.
Anxiety can feel insurmountable and all-consuming at times, leading individuals to feel disconnected, lonely, and defeated. At Avalon Malibu, we recognize how overwhelming anxiety can be and how possible healing is. By naming your emotions, externalizing emotions, and deep breathing, you can begin to experience greater inner peace. At Avalon Malibu, our team of professionals is here to support you in developing these tools for yourself. If you are ready to begin your journey, call Avalon Malibu today at (844) 857-5992.