"As a parent there are certain things that help me control my anxiety and they might just help you too"
- Anticipate and embrace change. Easier said than done, I know. The biggest challenge for me as a parent has been to accept that change is an absolute given. My anxiety is particularly triggered by change so I find that if I anticipate and expect it then life is a little bit easier.
- Quiet time. Life is busy and I find that my mind is constantly racing with a series of different plans and worries. There are often many irrational fears thrown in to the mix too. I have learned that quiet time during the day really helps me take a breather and sift through my racing mind. It can be as simple as taking 10-15 minutes to enjoy a cup of tea and a TV show or reading my book.
- Knowing when I need a break from social media. A huge part of my job involves being on social media and for the most part I really enjoy it. Interacting with other mothers is a huge comfort and reassurance to me. We can share the woes and celebrate the high points. I have learned to recognise when I need a break from it though. If my anxiety is particularly bad I find myself in a place where it doesn't take much to trigger another worry or fear for me. It could be something as simple as seeing something on social media that makes me think that I should or could have done X, Y and Z. Putting my phone down and staying away from social media makes all the difference.
- Lists, Lists and More Lists. Planning is such a huge comfort to me. I like to feel in control and to know what's happening day-to-day. I find if I have a plan I am more prepared for the unexpected. It could be as simple as throwing ingredients in to the slow cooker so that dinner is sorted or making a list of bits I need to do around the house. It helps me to feel focused and in control.
- Watching what I drink. I've noticed that if I drink too much coffee it can make my anxiety a bit worse. I have to consciously remind myself to drink enough water and not always reach for the stuff that keeps me awake. Parenting a toddler and coffee just go hand in hand these days.
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