Updated: Jun 20
We asked our peer workers "what helps you manage anxiety" to share strategies and help others, the classic Take Off peer way!
"For every anxious thought write down a balancing thought"
This is often different depending on the individual and their circumstances but I would like to think you will all find something here that works for you
To combat my anxiety I have a
mental health toolkit
It has other names, e.g. an anxiety/ self- soothing box
This is a box (that you can decorate). It can have a variety of small items that can help with anxiety. I myself am in the process of creating an Anxiety/Soothing bag to go with my box. The bag is more for when I'm travelling and away from home.
Items that might appear in either of these could include:
Oils, e.g. Lavender
Mini perfumes, hand cream, nail polish, mini soaps, a sleep mask.
Mini Haribo, mints and chewing gum.
Stress balls or other objects you can squash or make shapes out of.
Small colouring book with mini crayons/pencils.
Mini Wordsearch/crossword books
Mini short story book/book of positive quotes
Mini writing/drawing pad/notebook
Take charge of your anxiety, what can you do
Set realistic goals.
Asking others how they manage anxiety.
Ask someone who is special to you to create a letter that tells you why they think you're special and what good qualities you have.
More for your toolkit...
Your favourite teabags.
Relaxation/meditation CDs (if at home), or try one of the apps.
Different pieces of material in different colours and textures.
Affirmations written or printed on small pieces of paper.
Photos of good people and memories
A piece of jewellery that reminds you of someone
A piece of poetry or prose that makes you feel good
Other techniques that work for me
Grounding techniques such as breathing/ relaxation exercises or the 5-4-3-2-1 exercise which deliberately makes use of the 5 senses.
Going for a long walk, admiring nature or other physical activity like the gym
Distraction techniques like music. I think there's something for every situation and every mood.
Doing some creative writing such as poetry and prose or doing what some call a brain dump where you literally write what you feel at that moment.
Think more about the positive things you've done not everything you feel you haven't.
Meeting with /Calling/texting/sending a message to contact friends/family/loved ones
Having a laugh
Art and crafts 🖌
Going to your happy place
Hopefully something here can help you or someone you know
We'll be doing a series of other peer experiences, help guides and recovery journeys over time so check our blog for updates!