If you’re experiencing any kind of anxiety, here is a simple technique that can immediately help you feel more in control and better equipped to deal with whatever the future may hold.
Give yourself about a half hour and start writing. Write down everything you’re worried about, from the miniscule stressors to the major concerns. Get it all out! Putting everything down in black and white will immediately demystify things and help you to see each concern as a manageable challenge, rather than one big, overwhelming cloud.
Next, on a fresh sheet of paper, separate your list into two columns. Title the first one, “Things I can do something about.” And the second one, “Things I have no control over.” For the things you can do something about, sketch out a quick plan for how and when you will take your first step in addressing each one. Are there questions you need to ask? Is there someone you need to call? Can you hire an expert to help you out? Get clear on how to begin tackling each concern head-on and commit to getting the ball rolling.
When you look at the column of things you have no control over, you may find that there are far fewer than you initially thought. Or to your relief, there may be lots of things you’ve been worrying about that you aren’t actually able to control, such as other people’s reactions, thoughts or feelings. If something you can’t control is particularly distressing, make it a priority to get yourself support for as long as you need it. Call on your own strength and spirit, call on your friends and family, and call on professionals when appropriate.
By getting clarity on what you can and can’t control, you’ll give yourself a much more manageable perspective from which to breathe, relax, and move forward.