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If you have anxiety, then you know it can be one of the most stressful things you encounter on a daily basis. Especially when you leave the comforts of home, dealing with anxiety at the office can present an entirely different challenge.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, people with anxiety are often triggered at work for a variety of reasons. Many jobs force you to continually juggling different tasks — setting and meeting urgent deadlines, maintaining positive relationships in the office, attending meetings and presenting your findings. There can be many triggers when it comes to anxiety, and personal care comes down to the individual, but if you haven't created an anxiety arsenal for yourself, there are ways to cope with it.
Find a Therapist
Sometimes the key to helping your anxiety is speaking to a healthcare professional. If your anxiety is getting worse, or something that you have never dealt with before, then seeking out professional care is your best bet. Clinical psychologists will be able to give you cognitive behavioral therapy, which will help you better understand how to cope with your anxiety. Therapists can be very expensive but inquire with your human resources department to see if your insurance covers the costs of therapy.
Stop Drinking Coffee
Coffee can be a mainstay in people's routine, but all caffeine is not good caffeine. Caffeine naturally increases your heart rate and psychological symptoms so drinking multiple cups a day can only increase symptoms of anxiety. If you like the taste of coffee, or the ritual of preparing coffee there are many alternatives. Not only can you drink decaffeinated coffee, but you can also find alternative options that have less caffeine. Green and herbal teas or decaffeinated coffee won't give you the same jolt as caffeinated coffee, but it could help you reduce symptoms of anxiety.
Relax and Breathe
When you're super stressed out have you ever noticed that you tend to stop breathing? Of course, you are still breathing, but your rhythmic patterns do changeup. If you're the type of person to hold their breath when they're stressed, have labored breathing, or hold tension in your face, you need to relax. Not only do you need to relax your mind, but you need to relax your body as well.
According to Dr. Marla Deibler, a licensed clinical psychologist and the executive director of The Center for Emotional Health of Greater Philadelphia, we tend to hold tension in our faces when our anxiety is at an all-time high. To fix this, you can practice breathing exercises at your desk. This will set your mind at ease, and the increase of oxygen will also slow down your heart rate. "Diaphragmatic breathing or other relaxation-inducing practice (e.g., mindfulness meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, guided imagery exercises, tai chi, yoga) can reduce stress by helping to encourage the relaxation response," Deibler says.
Create a Self-Care Routine
Many people think that to help anxiety you have to either suppress it or not deal with it. A lot of people deal with anxiety, and some can cope better than others, but comparing your experience to the next person won't help.
Instead of finding fault in yourself because you have anxiety, learn to cut yourself some slack. Creating a self-care routine will allow you to learn to love yourself and your flaws. If you experience anxiety at work, find ways to create your home environment at your job. You don't need to have your whole house at your desk, but having things like essential oils, photos that make you happy, inspirational quotes, or even a reminder to meditate halfway through the day will really help you enjoy your workspace, instead of loathing it.
Allanah Dykes has a Bachelor of Arts in Communications and Politics from Fairfield University. She started her freelance career in 2016 and has written about how to land a job post-college, internships, and the interviewing process. She has pieces featured on Elite Daily, Levo League, and Popsugar.