The Therapy Guy

Tips for dealing with stress and anxiety.

August 25, 2020 The Therapy Guy
The Therapy Guy
Tips for dealing with stress and anxiety.
Show Notes Transcript

Here are some tips for dealing with stress and anxiety

There are some breathing techniques and a suggestion for dealing with panic attacks etc

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You are listening to the therapy guy talking about all things mental health, informing and supporting you when you need it most. Contact us for more information or with any comments, and please leave a review if you enjoy what you hear. Thanks for listening. Welcome to the therapy guy. My name is Alan. And today I'm going to give you some tips for dealing with anxiety and stress. And helping you obviously understand how you can cope and what you can do for yourself to try to manage those feelings. There's lots of different information you can get on the internet. Please be aware that even the advice I'm giving you now because it's going out to everybody. It has to be fairly generic. It has to be aimed at everybody. So it may not work specifically for You start, one unlikely there is almost try to change the techniques that you may read on things like Google or different websites, and even the ones I give you to yourself and your own circumstances. There's lots of things that you can do. There's lots of things that help different people. But the things that how your partner or your friend or anybody else, may not specifically help yourself. So just be aware. It's not you. It's not because your stress and anxiety is worse. It's just because we are all different and different things work for so it's no different to exercising. Some people like to play football, somebody want to play golf, some people run somebody who was psycho, the end result is still the same. The fitness is there, the enjoyment is there, but it's just a different way of getting there. What is So stress anxiety, how can it affect us? There are so many different physical ways that stress and anxiety can affect us. Now, I'm just going to give you a few are just going to give you some things that maybe you can notice. Some things you may not be aware of. It can be things like headaches, back pain, neck pain, we hold a lot of tension in our body when we're stressed and anxious. So we may set a bit differently, we might stand a bit differently because of this tension we feel we may be a bit stiffer, so we can feel this discomfort in our back in our neck, and even other areas reading it chest pains, which may also be something to do with us breathing too fast and not getting enough oxygen into our bloodstream can also be things like problems with digestion, getting acid reflux, nausea, Shaking, sweating, some dizziness, and sometimes some tingling or numbness in our fingers or face or anything else. And again, some of these things can be do coming due to us not getting the oxygen we need in our bloodstream because we're in this fight or flight response. Now, some of the emotional things that we can sometimes think and feel is we can be find ourselves being more irritable, we can find ourselves getting angry, easier, more frustrated with a smaller things. When you find yourself crying at random times over over things that we wouldn't normally cry might obviously be really impatient. Sometimes this can lead us to decrease productivity. So you may find work slows down your output, your enthusiasm for doing things like going to the gym. Or being with friends, you may find that you struggle to think how this all these sorts going round in your mind because you're stressed anxious, you haven't really then got the thoughts, the spare capacity in your brain to concentrate on work, or the things that can lead to us forgetting things, dates, appointments. And people say I'm forgetful, it may mean indication that you've just got a lot going on for you at that time. And your brain is just trying to prioritise some of the thoughts and the things that happen to you. Or see eventually this can lead to us burning out. Now there's quite a lot of different things, different ways that people express and what it is about burning out. For me, it's really about obviously, just losing all lives usually as I'm not drive to get up and do the things that we normally do. I like going to work Seeing friends eating and looking after ourselves, we just lose everything for us. And we just enhance, not to give up on things is really extreme, and of where our anxiety and stress can lead us emotionally. But the physical impacts that it can have on us to our events. I read an article yesterday, which, which suggests that 40% of the physical symptoms that people go to the doctors for now, are stress related. So as I said, already, the bad back the neck pain, that sort of thing. It can be an indication that you're just really stressed. So what can you do about things? What can you do on a very basic level? So some generic and general tips would be, you could try to talk to someone who you trust. What are we trying to do? It's fine, someone who is there and not going through too much themselves. We don't want you just obviously listening and colluding with the other person about how bad each other's lives are. We want someone who's in reasonably good place, which is why talking to a therapist often helps. Not only are they impartial, but they're there and they've been trained pacifically to manage their own feelings, and obviously, not bring them into the room with yourself, which is why a lot of people find that they can talk to a therapist more easily. We can try to look after our physical health. Doing this just that doesn't involve let's say going to the gym. It could involve just you going out for a walk. You eating regularly, eating what you can as healthfully as possible. We can soon start to notice our diet changing with fine we eat more sugar stuff or quick fix foods, things that gives us energy. Because when we're stressed and anxious, your brain uses a lot of energy. So we instantly fix the sugar stuff, the things that will give us that feelgood factor that we need just to pick us up and keep us going. We can try some breathing exercises, and I'm going to give you one or two of them in a minute. Just to help you through them. I'll give you some details about that. Just in a while. keep a diary, trying to and what I would say on this story is don't just write down the bad stuff, or write down some things that you've got. Right? Or things have gone well for you. And the same sort of context. So if you write half a page, things, thoughts and feelings about negative stuff, try to look for some things that you've got right so I managed to get a bag Go to work now, part of your brain so you should be doing it anyway. But you still managed to do that you've got up even though you're feeling this way, you still were strong enough to put yourself into that position. You can try complementary and alternative therapies. People find it in mass allergies, aroma therapies, all this sort of thing can help. Because we're all so different as I spoke about earlier, different things work for different people. And remember, one thing doesn't work. Please try something else. If you go to a therapist, and you don't like them or the way that they help you and support you, isn't working for you. First thing I try to encourage you to do is talk about it with a therapist. The second thing of actually do is find somebody else. Try somebody different, but learn from that experience, and ask the next therapists question About how they work, so you get the support that you need. If we go back to the breathing techniques just briefly, there is really big one that I really promote. And you may have heard of it. It's called 711 breathing technique now is a really powerful technique for helping people reduce the feelings of stress and anxiety. But like anything else, it needs a bit of practice. What people tend to do is just basically use it when they actually feel the stress or anxiety is at its peak can be really difficult to focus then on trying to do that trying to use that skill. So what I normally encourage my clients to do is to practice it when they're feeling okay, practice it when they're watching the TV or stuck in a traffic jam or the red lights or something in short, little easy bursts. So that that's Scale is there. And so you're already preparing yourself for if and when you need it. How does it work? Well, we think when our breathing controls how we think and feel, if you breathe more quickly, you can become more excited and more anxious. II three, breathe more slowly, we can feel more relaxed and in control. We think about it when you go to sleep at night times, you end up breathing more slowly, you know and breathing rapidly, as if you were if you're watching exciting movie or running or anything else. 711 technique basically revolves around you breathing in to the count of seven, and then breathing out to the count of 11. It's important to try to do this as slowly as possible. When it can be quite big. Those numbers are quite large if for when you start important thing here. To remember, it's not so much the numbers. It's the routine you breathe out for longer than you breathe in. So you could do breathe in for the count of five, and you breathe out for the count of eight. whatever is comfortable for yourself really indicates indication is no different to like, if you went to the gym, you wouldn't be able to run a marathon. As soon as you go through or lift heavy weights, you have to build up to that. So if you start with a lower numbers, and then start to build up working towards 711 breathing, and you'll find it easier. Remember, the thing to do is make sure that the out breath is longer than in the mean think of the words in a shorter word, and it is an easy way to remember. Try to practice it maybe three to five times a day. It helps So if you attach it to something else, so if you have in your first drink in the morning, try some breathing exercises. If you're watching TV and advert comes on, then try reading exercises for maybe one or two minutes. The more frequently you practice this, the easier it becomes. And you can email me and I can send you a worksheet with all this information on and it'll help you I say, I always tell my clients to take a photo of it. So then they've got it with you, it's on your phone. We don't leave our phones anywhere nowadays. So if it happens, and anxiety or stress is getting too much, and you forget, you only have it on your phone there for you to do. Or of course, you can listen to this podcast again, which would be fantastic. There's lots of different ways that you can help with just reducing your stress and not breathing technique is just one of them. Another thing that I use is sort of mental exercises. These work really well for myself, because it's how I think and feel. And it really works with how my brain sees things and does things. So what I might do is I might, if I can feel myself starting an anxious, I want to talk to name all the things I can see around me. So you just could scan your environment at any point, and you just see the different things, try to notice something different that you haven't seen before. You can sometimes count backwards. So you might like to start at 100 and count backwards, I don't know, in seven or eights. So you go 93 or 92. Whatever it is that you decide is number you want to go back, but you drastically reduce that thing. You might pick an object and describe it in your mind in detail. You might look for every way. So it's a mindfulness test. thing that I use for my clients, I asked them to describe every single detail by a pen I give them. If you pick up everything, it could be your phone, it could be your iPad, it could be a computer, just look for every single detail but haircuts, manufacturers, colours, textures, everything that you can see on that item, try to read things, or spell your name or name of other people try and spell them backwards during these different mental challenging exercises, can challenge and change the what area of the brain that we're using. So we change on the emotional side of the brain to the rational, practical side of our brain. And it helps us then to see change the way that we're thinking and written distract us away from obviously, the anxiety and stress that we can feel. All the things you can do is you can win Get a name all the movies that you've ever seen, or all the music that you like, all the songs that you can remember, try to do these things, mix and match it. Now, another technique that you can adapt is something that works really well for people who are experiencing panic attacks or PTSD. And it's called the 54321 technique. This is really about looking your surroundings is really about trying to bring you away from that stress and those feelings are overwhelming a time and bring you back into the room that you're in wherever it is. So when we do there is five things that you can see. So look for the small details, look for maybe the smallest objects that you can see in the room. But name five of them, check them out. Five things you might not have seen before in the room. four things you can feel. Now, if you look at it, it might be your phone, it may be the clothes, you're wearing the table, you're sat on the chair, you're sat on, on anything, anything in your environment, four different textures that you can feel three things that you can hear. So it could be your, your breathing could be the traffic going by the wind, the rain, there could be lots of anything, any music. You can put some music on in the background, that sort of stuff, to things that you can smell. This can be even more difficult obviously, because it depends on where you are and what you're doing in that time. It may be stuff like the fresh air on air freshener in an office or house, the grass. It may be food or smell from restaurants as you're walking through. And then one thing that you can taste so one thing that I try to encourage people who are having these sort of flashbacks these panic attacks is They carry some mints or some chewing gum things in their pockets on their person. So that when they start to do that they can actually taste it is obviously something that you can smell too. So it's obviously something you can feel and something you can see. So it takes some of those boxes if you just get out those that piece of sort of sweets or that chewing gum, whatever it is that you're carrying around for yourself, give me something healthy. Of course, some of these things will you need to adapt and you need to work with them. So practice them. They won't always work unless you adapt them to how you think and feel, and the support and experiences that you're having right now. Try them, use them. Keep doing practising them three, four or five times a day, attach them to something else, even the 54321 technique You can just run through it in your mind, you can use it doesn't have to be experiencing what a trauma or an anxiety or panic attack, you can just get used to doing the sequence when you're feeling calm. So that is there as a skill ready for you when you need it most. Now, as always, if you need any advice, any guidance, any more information, please don't hesitate to contact me. I'll be happy to hear from you. I'll be happy to send you any information that I've got and point in the right direction for more information or more support that could help you. I'd like to thank you for listening. For today, I'm going to sign off and I hope you tune in next time for we're going to have some meditation, podcasts come up. So things that hopefully help you sort of with mindfulness and how we read asleep. Before today, I'm going to sign off as a therapy guy. Stay safe and look after each other. Bye for now. Thanks for listening to the therapy guy. Please don't forget to tell other people about our great podcasts and counselling for all your mental health and well being needs some scientists today for the support you need. Find us at horizon play beth.co.uk Transcribed by https://otter.ai