LEARN TO VOICE YOUR OPINIONS! You can throw yourself in at the deep end if you’re eager. Maybe try being the first person to give an idea or respond to a question. Or if like me, you find this difficult, work up to it. Voicing your opinion doesn’t always mean throwing your views down somebody’s throat, and forcing them to listen. It can just mean talking about a subject you’ve become increasingly interested in, which you would like to share with others. It’s more about realising your views on things, so in the future you have more options for conversation starters instead of going blank…like we all do time to time in awkward situations!
Start gradually and work up. Lecture length conversations don’t just come out of thin air! Find a topic you are passionate about or would simply like to know more about. Start by searching out forums/feeds, or even social media profiles relating to the subject. If you see something you like, leave a comment about it. You’ll be doing the world of good for somebody else too! Or if you see something you don’t agree with, leave a pleasant comment explaining how somebody could make something better. This isn’t a queue to start bringing everyone else down with negative comments, but a way of making you feel comfortable about opposing somebody else’s views in the real world. You can do it anonymously until you feel comfortable enough to attach your name to it. Personally, I started with watching YouTube videos and following accounts that were fashion related. Watching people’s journeys and commenting on the content they shared made me realise that my heart lay with this industry.
You may not be used to talking extensively about something or forming opinions, but this will help you discover your own personal views on things. And the result- you become an even more interesting person to talk to.
STAY COOL and collected. If you become super anxious, assure yourself that it’s just your body’s natural response. Knowing you’re anxious can help you focus on becoming calm again, to bring your best side forward in any situation.
Be smart about the way you handle these types of things. For example, if you shake a lot, one of the worst things to do would be to have a large cup of coffee before any occasion you anticipate your anxiety levels to rise. The increase in adrenaline is only going to make things a hell lot worse.
Another one that has helped me, is to think of previous successes where I have conquered my anxiety and have come away better off, such as situations like a job interview, a presentation etc…That feeling of achievement is something you can use to motivate yourself, so it no longer feels like it’s the end of the world.
IMAGINE YOU, WATCHING YOU. Another weird trick of mine that I find hard to explain… But imagine you watching you, you wouldn’t judge, would you? Say for example, you find yourself having to give a speech or presentation. Think of yourself watching you. Sometimes it’s incredibly useful to look on the bright side, and imagine that the person watching you is in fact understanding and caring. I know if I were to watch somebody give a nervous speech, I wouldn’t judge them, but more so respect them. I’d want to make them feel comfortable instead, as I recognise how hard it can be. You must remember that not everybody is judging you negatively!
Use POSITIVE MASKS to kick its ass. Show your anxiety that you’re in control. Be careful to not put on a cocky act, but consider a simple change such as using stronger, more confident body language. You’ll be surprised how much it can change the impressions you send out to other people. Opt for more open body language. Stand tall, and avoid folding your arms which can show a more defensive side. If all else fails, a bit of humour never hurt. Throw in the odd joke (again, where appropriate!).
PAMPER YOURSELF. I shouldn’t need to say any more on this one, should I? It’s important to look after yourself, whether a gal or a guy. Feeling happy and confident about yourself is key. Do the things that make you feel BOMB AF! If you’re feeling yourself, this will no doubt shine through. Don’t be too ahead of yourself though, there’s a difference between confidence and arrogance. Be laid-back and chilled about it.
THE MOST IMPORTANT- BE CREATIVE! I cannot stress this enough. Finding a creative way to channel your energy can encourage a total transformation. Try a new hobby to expose yourself to a new world. Channel your feelings through this instead of falling into your usual negative habits that have proved unsuccessful many times at helping your anxiety.
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE WHO UNDERSTAND! Have people around you who are relatable and care. Talk about your anxiety when it’s appropriate or when you need a bit of help. If you are having a particularly difficult day, IT’S OKAY, you’re allowed to feel like that. Communication is key here, so the people around you can do as much as possible to help you out, or vice versa.
And last, but by no means least, IT’S OKAY TO ADMIT IT TO YOURSELF. The first few times can be hard to say “I have anxiety”. But this is a step that makes things ten times better. Don’t do it in a sense of self-pity, but don’t be in denial either. I have learned in the past that suppressing symptoms just helps them build. WORK WITH ANXIETY, NOT AGAINST IT!
I know this has been a very lengthy post, but sometimes I feel anxiety can be a bit of a taboo subject still. Very rarely do people talk about what they do on a day to day basis to help themselves, so I thought this may be helpful to any of you out there looking for ideas. Or even any of you out there looking for something to read, to make you realise you aren’t the only person in the world going through this! I hope this helps every one of you, and you take something away from this. And to any of you out there lucky enough to have not experienced this, I hope this gives you some ideas on how to help people you know struggling with anxiety. Let me know in the comments if you liked this post, and if there’s anything else relating to this you’d like to see posts on in the future.
LOVE SIYAN XXX