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Moving to Calm

Anxiety has been on the rise for several years. I think we would all admit to either experiencing or seeing more anxiety in our own social circles. The statistics on anxiety also show an increase in anxious feelings in teenagers. There has been a lot of research trying to help the population combat this new data. Techniques such as reframed thinking, relaxation strategies, and grounding exercises (to name a few) are research-based methods that have proven to help with feelings of anxiety.

Anxiety comes in many different forms from many different sources. In some situations, anxiety can be a learned behavior. In other words, children can be taught to feel anxious. With that being said, it is important for anxious children to be surrounded with well-adjusted adults who can model coping with their own anxieties. The Harvard Business Review published an article that addresses how anxiety can spread. In the article, the author discusses three simple things that have great potential to help adults and teens when dealing with stress and anxiety. Click HERE to access the article Anxiety Is Contagious: Here’s How To Contain It by Judson Brewer.

In the article, the author discusses the importance of moving anxious feelings to calm ones in order to maintain emotional wellness. It is good to understand that some anxiety can be healthy. Anxious feelings can show up to warn us when a situation is unsafe, can motivate us when we are needing to conquer a fear and can guide us to the situation in which we need to be giving our attention. Especially with the conditions we find ourselves in today, we all need to be moving towards calm. Here are some ways you can start that movement.

  1. Practice relaxation techniques. Personally, I have found it helpful to incorporate prayer into techniques such as guided imagery or mindfulness. The Calm App is a great use of technology that has many platforms to help with relaxation.
  2. Exercise grounding strategies. Grounding should help us stay focused on the present instead of constantly forward thinking. Experiencing nature, focusing on my five senses and thanking God for positive things that are currently happening are all grounding strategies that I practice.
  3. Surround yourself with encouragement and positivity. I often encourage students to develop a support system that keeps them calm. It is important to make sure the people we let influence us, influence us for the better, especially when we are thinking about our emotional and social health.