by Sohini Pattni
How strong are your foundations?
Preparation is an important focus area when handling anxiety. That is not to say you are inviting the idea of anxiety, but it is the preparation to build yourself as a solid structure to withstand the forces of anxiety.
Building strength, whether mentally or physically is a process. It demands repetition, dedication and desire. Always be patient with yourself and know it takes time. Take small steps and don’t give up.
Confidence is also about building strength
We may have some idea how we can build our inner and outer strength through activities such as exercise, meditation, yoga, breathing etc. It is worth thinking outside of these well promoted activities. Building confidence is also about building all-round strength. Take part in activities that make you feel balanced and enliven your soul.
“The goal is to build mind, body and soul”
Think about your old hobbies or things you have been wanting to do but have been putting off; singing lessons, sailing, drawing, painting travelling etc. You may use a combination of activities and keep changing the routine. The goal is to build mind, body and soul.
Strong body = Strong mind
I continuously assess and reassess what I find challenging in everyday life. A difficulty I faced at one point was the ability to have a conversation within a small group of people. I was not able to find my voice and faced high levels of anxiety. I searched for ways to overcome this using natural techniques. I used a combination of activities that allowed me to get to know myself better.
To my surprise, I found strength training (physical exercise using resistance for example weight training) gave me back more than I was expecting. As well as focusing on strengthening muscles, I learned to develop the core of the body. It helped me to stand confidently amongst a group of people, whilst dealing with heightened anxiety. It was a way to bring harmony to my weakened emotions. Each time I practiced, it improved my balance and stability – both in the moment and in daily life.
Less achievement. More experience
At the same time, I tried new experiences like Cuban salsa. In comparison to strength training, dancing allowed me to move more freely. It was less about goals, achievement, progression, and more about connecting to my body. Both of these activities gave me an immediate benefit to anxiety through the release of serotonin. This is one of the neurochemicals released which improves your mood.
What do you think your combination of activities would be? What old hobbies or adventures have been collecting dust on your bucket list? We would love to hear what experiences have helped you manage anxiety.
Stay tuned for future posts where Sohini will explore more themes around anxiety.