Reviewed by Dawn Brown, LPC, NCC
Whether you’re struggling with uncertainty surrounding personal events or things in the news, it is challenging to move forward when fear and anxiety hold you back. Knowing ways to calm anxiety during uncertain times can make a difference and more comfortable to adjust. When going through unforeseen circumstances, it is crucial to understand how emotions play a role in responding.
Knowing how to be calm when feeling anxious keeps negativity and stress to a minimum. You can rise to the occasion with confidence and be willing to meet challenges with helpful solutions. The key is to learn how to channel your mind to focus on what you can do to regain control. Consider the following tips to help you learn how to calm down from anxiety.
Learn How To Manage Anxiety And Stress
There are various techniques to practice regularly to keep stress levels low. It includes engaging in activities that help you feel calm and relaxed. You can engage in listening to calming music for anxiety that includes your favorite artists. Other ways to manage stress may consist of exercise routines with yoga and deep breathing techniques. Deep breathing exercises are useful to help people calm down from anxiety and anger. You can practice these exercises for a few minutes a day when you feel anxious. You can sit, stand, or lay down and practice breathing exercises during meditation.
Make time for yourself to do activities you like. Try getting to bed at the same time each night. Improve your diet and exercise regularly. Understanding how to manage stress depends on knowing what causes it and how to reduce or avoid it. Consider setting goals on managing anxiety and what you want to achieve for different areas in your life. You can work with a therapist or counselor for guidance on how to deal with your emotions to keep stress levels low.
Things You Can Do Today
Channel Your Attention To The Present
Uncertainty creates anxiety because you don’t know what will happen next. People get anxious thinking about the future because they think something bad may occur, and they won’t be prepared. To keep your worries about the future to a minimum, focus on today. Sometimes people get depressed or feel hopeless about problems they’re not sure how to fix or if there is a solution. People even allow themselves to get paralyzed into doing nothing by focusing too much on the future. Take things one day at a time by keeping your attention in the present.
Focusing on the present cuts off negative thoughts and predictions. Mindfulness exercises help the mind focus on the present while gaining an appreciation for the present. There are apps and audio content on how to practice mindfulness. Focusing on the present takes practice and perseverance. It is a mental habit useful for calming the mind to avoid the emotional effects of uncertainty.
Let Yourself Accept Uncertainty
Learning to accept uncertainty can help calm your nerves while helping identify your feelings and what triggers them. Sometimes uncertainty triggers irrational fears that may not add up logically. Most people don’t think about uncertainty, but we know the risk is there for something to happen. You can’t let that fear keep you from living your life. Such fears allow worries to take over and turn into anxiety. Acknowledge your feelings and what causes them. In many cases, the uneasiness will pass or prove to be something you didn’t need to worry about.
Focus On Things You Can Control
One of the most significant actions to remember that plays a big role in understanding how to calm your anxiety is to focus on what you can control or change. It may seem like you don’t have control when certain things happen, but you can make decisions based on your capabilities. If you lose your job for reasons out of your control, you can channel your energy toward searching for the job. If you are worried about getting sick, do what you can to keep yourself safe and healthy by taking precautions like hand washing and disinfecting surfaces. When you think you don’t have control, use the situation to determine what action you can take to benefit you.
Tap Into Your Inner Strength
Use resilience gained from the challenges you went through and use it to guide your inner strength. Focus on what you gained from past lessons learned. People may not realize how strong they indeed are based on previous challenges. Things learned from your past may help you see that things will eventually work themselves out. Consider the challenges you got through in the past and how you achieve it. What actions would you consider the most useful that helped you get through?
Build Your Self-Worth
Focus on ways to build your self-confidence and your worth. Sometimes anxiety comes from a lack of confidence in one’s abilities. The key here is to know how to be kind to yourself and note what you value, who you are, and why. Notice when you feel shameful about something. Acknowledge why and consider getting opinions from people you trust to improve your perception.
Use kind words when talking about yourself. When you feel hurt, remember the pain doesn’t define who you are, even when you’re hurting. Sometimes people face unexpected words or actions from others that hurt. You can channel the negativity from such situations by reminding yourself you define your worth, not the other way around. Consider affirmations and inspirational quotes to keep your thoughts positive.
Take Your Time Listening
People can get caught up in a few words and let their thoughts run wild without getting all the details first. If you don’t take the time to listen and get all of the facts, you may get worked up over nothing. Sometimes there is uncertainty in things said, especially if you don’t know all the details to conclude. It makes handling situations more challenging, and it helps you learn about others during a conversation with different views. You can practice listening by being open to what is said without reacting or be a nonreactive listener. Pay attention to what is said without judgment. Assess if it makes logical sense. Get more information or ask questions if something doesn’t add up. Listen first, and then respond.
Keep Your Values First
Your values include things that matter to you the most. Sometimes people get caught up trying to please others by following their lead. When you’re stressed or worried, keep in mind what is most important to you and why. Society has values that may not line up with yours. It is okay to be different and set standards that define who you are and how you live your life. Your values likely help you stay grounded no matter what happens. They help you feel good and give a sense of what to care about and why.
Having personal values encourages you to connect with others that share the same. An example includes protesting and raising awareness of important issues through social action. Many see significant value in what they believe in because no one can take away from them. When you share similar views with others and connect on those views, it helps you gain hope that things will sometimes change for the better.
Keeping your values also allows you to connect with people you care about the most, like family and friends. It is a reminder that you’re not going through a period of uncertainty alone. You have something and someone to help you maintain inner peace.
Connect With Others
Getting social with others is a productive way of calming your anxious mind. You can talk about things that bother you and understand your thoughts and feelings from another perspective. You can connect with peers through social media groups that provide support for anxiety. You can learn how to practice calmness through device apps and therapy.
Understanding the significance of social interaction is essential. During times of uncertainty or anxiety, it is common for people to refrain from talking about their situations with others in fear of coming off weak. Connecting with others may help you get ideas on handling stressful situations while learning who else is experiencing the same challenges.
Make Changes To Adapt
Making changes to help yourself adapt may bring valuable benefits. Just because you’re going through changes with an unknown outcome doesn’t mean you can’t find ways to make things easier for you. Making changes could reduce anxiety and still provide a sense of control. It may help you gain more comfort and confidence in your abilities to get through challenging times. You don’t have to sit back and watch change pass you by. Consider ways to make the best of the situation, such as taking an online anxiety test and take notes of what you learn along the way.
Times of uncertainty brings challenges, but you can take steps to help yourself feel safe while being hopeful for the future. The key to practice being more responsive instead of reactive. Your inner strength will help navigate you through the unknown.