Stepping Out Of Your Comfort Zone: Learning To Manage Anxiety

I am not a sports fan but with the football associations annual turnover of £318m its safe to assume that football generates a lot of interest for the UK’s population. To be perfectly honest, I’ve never got the hype. As someone who grew up in a sports-oriented household, I’m pretty sure I have a firm grasp of how the games play out (and yes, that includes the offside rule) but have never really enjoyed sitting and watching the games.

Yesterday, however, I met with a few fans at the local pub and took in the atmosphere.

Surprisingly, I enjoyed the afternoon, regardless of the anti-football stance I had previously stood by.

A friend of mine commented that the abundance of testosterone in the room must have been comparable with that of war and how the sheer will and determination of the bodies in the room were similarly buzzing with anticipation. It was an interesting point and made me assess the situation with new eyes.

It is incredibly easy to get locked up in our own bubble of comfort, see the same friends, experience the same situations time and time again but this is how we slip into old habits, anxiety rears its ugly head and some of us slip back into depression. In order to break the cycle, we must ensure to sever the ties to normality once in a while, step out of our comfort zones and try something we were maybe opposed to doing previously.

Anxiety is a terrible thing but with practice we can manage our emotions, learn to control our behaviour and much like exercising to tone up, we can strengthen our brain, become more accustomed to situations that make us uncomfortable.

Obviously, I am not condoning actions that cause us pain or anger or anything that causes panic attacks, what I am suggesting is doing one thing a week that maybe you’ve been putting off because of your worry. For instance, I had been putting off having my hair cut for a seemingly silly reason: I find talking to hairdressers can be a little awkward, forced, and in my eyes there is nothing worse than small talk but I still called up and booked an appointment which I had on Saturday. Yes, it was an awkward experience but I feel healthier for doing it, as not only is my hair feeling more managable but I feel happy that I was able to take that step to owning my own life.

Control takes time and with time we can take back control of our lives.

How will you take control of your life this week?

Until next time.

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