How to deal with anxiety and feeling overwhelmed

Keep your anxiety symptoms in check when life gets too much with these simple, everyday techniques.

Feeling overwhelmed? Lady, aren’t we all. Life is organised chaos at the best of times, but when the balance is tipped, tasks can feel unmanageable. If you’re wondering how to deal with anxiety when life feels overwhelming, we’ve got you.
We’ve put together clever tips from wellbeing experts to help you keep your anxiety at bay when life gets a bit too much. Keep reading for everything from tips on getting into mindful movement to prioritising you-time.

How to Spot Anxiety Symptoms

Anxiety manifests in different ways - from having a meltdown during the 3AM wakeup call to not being able to think straight. For mums, anxiety can be especially difficult to spot, as life becomes incredibly hectic after having a baby (to say the least). It's hard to know what's anxiety and what's just symptomatic of 9 days of no sleep.
Remember though, that the trials of motherhood can cause anxiety and even if you can explain why you feel bad, that doesn't mean your anxiety isn't a real issue or that you shouldn't seek support.
Look out for these common anxiety symptoms as signs that you may need to make changes to protect your mental health:
  • feeling restless or on edge
  • being irritable
  • getting tired easily
  • having difficulty concentrating or feeling your mind goes blank
  • having difficulty getting to sleep or staying asleep (and not just because there's a wailing baby)
  • having tense muscles

Mindfulness: The Antidote to Anxiety Symptoms

The word 'mindfulness' gets batted around a lot. But, what does it mean and does it actually help you deal with anxiety?
We think mindfulness is the bees' knees and it's really simple. Basically, mindfulness is the practice of bringing your attention to the present moment to stop your mind racing elsewhere. We're always thinking about lots of things at once... the shopping list, work tasks, what we said after 3 glasses of red last night.
Practicing mindfulness helps you gain more control over your own thought process, so that when your mind races, you're able to keep cool and put things into perspective.

Tips for Practicing Mindfulness:

Meditate: Sit with your eyes open, but downward and diffused. For five minutes, just focus on your breath, and how it makes your body rise and fall. If thoughts come into your head, label them as 'thinking' and bring your attention back to your breath.
Affirmations: Repeat positive, realistic affirmations out loud. This may include things like 'I am healthy, my family is healthy, I have a safe home'. Whatever reminds you that at a basic level, there is nothing to worry about should be your mantra.
Get Sensory: Get in touch with your senses and think of something you can hear, see, smell and feel.
All of these techniques are designed to reduce anxiety symptoms by reminding you that you are safe in the present moment.

How to Deal with Anxiety Every Day

Dr Ritz Birah gives us her top 5 tips for prioritising your own care, with a focus on sustainable everyday habits.

Set your intention for the day

As soon as you wake up, set three small self-care intentions you want to carry out that day, such as brushing your hair or applying lip balm. It doesn’t have to be anything earth-shattering. We can’t all get a hot stone massage and a blow-dry every day *we wish*.

Practice being more present with yourself

When there’s lots to get done, our minds rush at 100 miles an hour. It’s difficult not to let our busy thoughts distract us. We’re always thinking about what we need to do or things that might be worrying us, especially at the moment. Our phones are also a huge culprit in this.

Practice being more present by using mindfulness techniques or listening to a guided meditation.

Carve out moments for yourself

When we have some self-care time, such as going to a Pilates class or having a coffee with a friend, we normally have some extra moments to ourselves. This might be as little as the car journey there and back, but this could help create some really valuable headspace and distance.

Mindful Movement with Studio | S

Exercise isn't just about physical wellness. Moving your body mindfully can help you appreciate your own strength and mobility, while calming your mind. Pilates teacher and mindful movement specialist, Steph takes us through the basics of mindful movement.
"Mindful movement helps us focus on our breath and turn inward to acknowledge how our body feels and release any physical tension we may be holding.
The main purpose of this flow is to allow you to take a short amount of time out of your busy lifestyle and align your breath, body and mindset to find ease within yourself.
We often think we need to do vigorous exercise to remain healthy, but if we're already feeling heightened through the stresses of everyday life, we don't want to heighten ourselves further. Know there's a lot of strength in stillness, slowing down and releasing tension from your body."
- Steph, Founder of Studio | S
Click here to watch Steph's mindful movement flow.
Other resources
Headspace App
Mind Charity
Nourish Wellbeing Platform for Mums

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