Screen shot 2011-11-16 at 11.46.07 AM

7 Common Habits That Secretly Make You Anxious

Do you know why so many people have trouble dealing with anxiety? Simply put, it boils down to a lack of perspective.  Most of us think of anxiety as something that’s irrevocably… out there; as though it were an ominous and invisible threat plotting against our well-being.

All too frequently, people conceive of anxiety as an external factor they cannot possibly control. Does that describe how you feel? Truth be told, this kind of reasoning is nothing but an excuse to remain a victim of anxiety. Even though there are a plethora of known anxiety causes that you can’t control directly, it’s often possible to alleviate the problem by tackling specific habits and attitudes which usually go hand in hand with anxiety.

You may not be aware of it, but there are common habits of the mind and body that you constantly indulge, which secretly add up to your anxiety. Tackling these causes of anxiety will by no means eradicate your problem, but it will help make it manageable. It will also help you realize that you’re not a victim of your inner turmoil, as much as you’re a co-creator of it.

Understanding the most common causes of pathological anxiety

Coffee: Often regarded as a harmless beverage, coffee is actually a highly additive anxiety-inducing drug; it makes people more alert, but it also makes them jittery and nervous. Anyone who suffers from anxiety disorder or any kind of pathological anxiety issues should absolutely avoid coffee. Substitute with herbal teas and you’ll soon feel much more in control.

Refined Sugars: Likewise with coffee, refined sugars are also quite widespread and very much additive. If you don’t believe it, try spending a week without ingesting any foods that contain refined sugars. Avoiding sugar is a real challenge; not only because it’s omnipresent, but also because you have grown used to having a daily fix…. which makes you feel better on the short term, but soon after induces irritability and anxiety. Just like any other drug.

Sedentary lifestyle: One of most common patterns among anxiety sufferers is leading a highly sedentary living with little to no physical activity. No surprises there! When you fail to provide an outlet for all the energy and tension coursing through your body, that energy will invariably fuel your feelings of anxiety. You need to get in the habit of tiring your body on a regular basis, because that will directly contribute to soothing and relaxing your mind.

Negative thinking: Most people who are adepts of negative thinking fail to realize so. This is unfortunate, because the on-going stream of negative thoughts is constantly fueling your feelings of anxiety and inadequacy. How could you possibly not suffer from anxiety, if your mind is constantly racing in negative loops? Try to become aware of your negative thinking, and make a commitment to dismiss those woeful clouds constantly surrounding you.

Sleep Deprivation: It’s amazing how people underestimate the importance of getting a good night’s sleep, even though they constantly experience the negative effects of sleep deprivation. You must realize that sleep plays a vital role in regulating your physical and emotional states; anything less than 7 hours per night is just not healthy and it will invariably bring you closer to the mental edge every day.

Stress: In this day and age, people should be taught how to deal with stress from an early age. Because left unmanaged, stress is a negative force that can cause real damage in your life. If you constantly feel as though you’re unable to cope with your responsibilities and if you have a really hard time keeping up with your routine… that could become one of the major sources of anxiety in your life. Find ways to improve your ability to deal with stress, and your peace of mind will soon be reinforced.

Victim Mindset: It’s very hard not to get caught up in the victim mindset when you have chronic anxiety problems. But when it happens, it will make you feel as though you are just irrevocably stuck with your anxiety issues. Please don’t buy such silly ideas! You are only a victim while you refuse dealing with your problems. And as you may have realized from reading this article, managing anxiety can be done in rather subtle and seemingly indirect ways.

Remember, anxiety is not your enemy. It’s not an invisible enemy waiting to get you. Anxiety is more of a consequence of your dissatisfaction, rather than a cause. Understand what’s sourcing this problem and do your best to deal with it; as you do so, you’ll be effectively undermining the power anxiety has over you, and it will gradually become easier to cope.

This guest post was authored by Pedro Cardoso, who is well versed on anxiety treatment options. He believes that anxiety problems are best dealt with by yielding rather than struggling. He would like to urge all anxiety sufferers to follow the path of least resistance and tackle the sources of anxiousness rather than its manifestations.

Don’t Forget To sign up for the PTB NEWSLETTER!

Related Reading:

5 Ways to Stay Positive Everyday

How To Stop Worrying What Others Think

 

 

 

  • http://thelast3reps.com Brandon

    amazing post. 

    I can relate totally to the last point, the victim mindset. 

    for so long, i’ve always had this mindset that I was just ‘given’ whatever I was given and that I can’t really do anything about it. It was mostly fear and anxiety stuff. And that mindset actually caused me to lose my girlfriend that I fell in love with for 2.5 years. 

    The funny thing is, she would always tell me that I had the power to change. But I guess I realized that only after realizing what I lost. My fear and anxiety really blinded me to see the truth and to really deal with my problems.

    This post really spoke to me. 

    Thanks  

  • Happyjackielife

    Love it!!

  • http://flawlessconfidence.com Martin K.

    Great article!

    Refined sugars are sometimes useful (after a workout), but in general I agree that people should avoid them (as well as junk food in general).

    Sedentary lifestyle – no physical activity = no endorphins. No endorphins = no joy. Physical activity is one of the most important things if you want to feel happy!

  • http://Mazzastick.com Justin

    Hi Pedro,
    Excess coffee and sugar will definitely create symptoms and feelings of anxiety. I would also recommend for anyone that frequently feels anxiety to start taking B vitamins because this will help to strengthen the nervous system.

  • spellcheck dummy

    Don’t you mean addictive not additive?

  • spellcheck dummy

    Don’t you mean addictive not additive?

  • Muminbloom

    This is a good article and it makes sense.  I now drink herbal coffee and love it and replaced all our sugars in baking, etc, with coconut sugar and I drink herbal teas with honey when I have a sugar craving.  It’s really helped me.  There’s more I can do according to your article and I will certainly give them a try :)

  • MMiafisg@hotmail.com

    Great topic, Getting the mental edge is the toughest lemme share with you what has helped me when faced with an anxiety causing problem instead of feeling a victim to ur fears walking into it try and overwhelm imyour body with the sensation of joy and appreciate the fact that u have the ability to face your fears and how strong it makes u as a person, feel grateful for every situation since ever situation can in turn build u as a person….guys and go out there and do anxiety causing problems like public speaking and ur realize that smaller problems just don’t have the same grasp as they used to

    • http://flawlessconfidence.com Martin K.

      Great tip – take big challenges and other problems will become waaay easier to overcome!

  • Pingback: Training And Development Solutions » 7 Common Habits That Secretly Make You Anxious

  • Fbm 224

    Thank you for this post, just in time when I needed to realise this. Hope I can change at least the coffee, sleep and negative thinking.

  • Fbm 224

    Thank you for this post, just in time when I needed to realise this. Hope I can change at least the coffee, sleep and negative thinking.

  • kashyap

    in our life we know very well that some of our thoughts are negative, we all have some or other negative thoughts that do take toll of our health in the long term. as you have suggested first step towards a better life is always an introspection. we seldom take a time to watch our own thoughts, belief systems, in actual life these are the main culprits of our all suffering.body sense method is a great tool to begin with. learn body sense @

    http://24x7meditation.blogspot.com/2011/11/body-sense.html

  • http://pristineperception.com Suzanne

    Love the straightforwardness. ‘You are not a victim of your inner turmoil as much a you are  a co creator  of it”  Many people put a label on things and leave it at that. “I have anxiety” “I am just an anxious person”. Not true. Anxiety is partially the result of thinking into the future about events that may or may not happen.
    Enjoyed the post thanks

  • http://www.leadingedgeadvocate.com Lea B.

    I’m glad I don’t drink coffee. This is another good reason not to.

  • http://samedayessay.com/thesis custom thesis

    Great) the problem described is a part of my life, caz i have a busy life. i cant live without some sugars in the morning – gives me energy.But i try to avoid it in general. Thank you

  • Turnandburn34

    This post should be titled Pedro’s Opinions of Stress Absent Scientific Data.  While I agree that a sedentary lifestyle can contribute to stress, it makes me chuckle when I read “When you fail to provide an outlet for all the energy and tension
    coursing through your body, that energy will invariably fuel your
    feelings of anxiety.”  And your support for this statement???

  • Dianek

    I always wonder which comes first. The victim mindset and negative attitude which gets revved up by caffeine and refined sugar… or it’s the other way around…

    • Sarah.

      This gave me anxiety haha.

      • Michelle

        Yeah hysterical. Michelle, First time Anxiety Sufferer.

  • http://www.herbcyclopedia.com/index.php?option=com_zoo&view=frontpage&Itemid=193 HERBCYCLOPEDIA

    Against anxiety, did you ever heard about the Ayurvedic  shirodhara massage:

    http://www.herbcyclopedia.com/index.php?option=com_zoo&task=item&item_id=277&Itemid=193

  • Pingback: How to Control Anxiety mind mapIQ Matrix Blog

  • Pingback: Tips for beating anxiety. | All about mama