Beat Anxiety with Compartmentalization

Dear Friends,
As promised, I am continuing to equip you with the tools and skills to allow you to thrive. As mentioned in the previous email, working on enhancing your mental health not only feels good but also improves your immune system. This is a great time to put some effort into self-care. Hopefully, you were able to try new practices from the last newsletter.
Anxiety has a way of making you want to take action. When the fight or flight system gets turned on, it has a way of saying to you, “Don’t just stand there, do something!” So, we start to get frantic, are preoccupied with what is going on in our mind, or become kind of frozen. Well, when we have done all that we can and seem to find ourselves worrying and ruminating over potential worst-case scenarios you may want to put this next skill into practice.
Compartmentalization: This is where you learn to postpone your worry to a specific time. So instead of letting the anxiety come and worry you all throughout the day in an unrestrained way, you deliberately set aside a time of day in which you allow yourself to worry as much as you would like.
If you can picture a ship, they have large compartments underneath that have air so that the ship stays afloat. The compartments below are also quipped with large metal doors that have the ability to shut off certain compartments. This way if the ship’s hull was to become punctured and the water started to leak in, the compartments could be shut. Even if one or more compartments became filled with water, the doors would be able to block the water from going into all compartments. Some compartments would still have air and that would allow the ship to stay afloat.
The same thing applies here with our anxiety. If we become fully consumed with the anxiety, allowing it to take over all the compartments of our lives, we will also go down spiritually, emotionally, psychologically, and physically. But there is hope to stay afloat.
If we learn to practice the skill of redirecting our mind and attention, we can also create the proverbial “air and space for us to breath” and let in other life affirming things into our focus and attention.
How To Do It.
Plan:
*Decide a when you can realistically set aside for worry.
*Pick a time that you won’t be disturbed.
* A good suggestion if you can’t think of when it would be best, is for 15-30 minutes at 7:00pm.
Practice Postponing :
1.When you find yourself during the day “what if-ing” with hypothetical worries, gently remind yourself that tonight at 7:00 pm you have carved out time for this.
2.Gently bring your attention to the present moment. Get focused outside of yourself and get engaged in the world around you. Anxiety wants you to stay in your head.
Worry Time:
*Your worry time is dedicated to worrying.
*Try to use all the time you have dedicated even if you don’t feel too worried in the moment.
*Some suggestions are to write down all the potential negative scenarios that you can imagine or that went through your mind earlier that day.
*Notice if they are still as upsetting as they were when you first had the worry.
*Perhaps as you are writing, you will notice if there are any practical actions that you can take? Any solutions come to mind?
I look forward to you adding another tool to your tool belt. Wishing you the best! From my heart to yours.

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