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7 Ways to Fight Stress and Anxiety

7 Ways to Fight Stress and Anxiety

My cousin told me the other day that she believes things happen the way they are supposed to happen, and I quite agree. Life unravels itself the way it’s supposed to, and because it does I’ve often contemplated what “the Big Picture is.” I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I’ll never know what the Big Plan is from the Person Upstairs, or how She/He came up with the playbook. So I’ll sit back in my easy chair and let it all play out.

I’m not a religious person, but a spiritual one, recognizing the beauty and wonder we experience on life’s journey. I try to see the glass half full and live my life by seeing the good in everything.

But sometimes life throws us a curve, and without those curves we’d never recognize the beauty. There are some curves that are more difficult to maneuver. They cause us to feel sad, anxious or fearful. We can get lost in their midst or try to find our footing.

Our spirit is tested during times of adversity. Will we wither and spin out of control, or rely on our inner strength and faith to pull us through?

During times of adversity it’s important to have an anchor, something to lean on to help us maintain our strength. When life through us a curve we need to be ready.

Here are a few of my anchors that I lean on during difficult and stressful times:

Friends and Family: Reach out to loved ones. Put your trust in them to help you through your darkest days. There’s no shame in reaching out to others. That’s what unconditional love is all about.

Meditation: Meditating is extremely beneficial in calming your mind. According to a recent article in Forbes, meditation can change key areas of the brain that affect levels of fear, stress, anxiety and mood improvements. I try to meditate at least 5 – 10 minutes a day. Here’s Meditation 101 for beginners.

Prayer: According to Dr. Roberta Lee in her book “The Super Stress Solution,” “Research shows that people who are more religious or spiritual use their spirituality to cope with life. They’re better able to cope with stress, they heal faster from illness, and they experience increased benefits to their health and well-being.”

Journaling: Writing your thoughts in a journal can calm your mind. I love the blog “Tiny Buddha” and here she offers advice on 10 journaling tips to help you heal, grow and thrive.

Exercise: Exercise has been found to be beneficial when dealing with stress. As The Mayo Clinic says, “Exercise is meditation in motion.”

Outlets: I watch old sitcoms (of course M*A*S*H or The Mary Tyler Moore Show), movies (my husband and I have watched His Girl Friday – 1940 – a zillion times and we almost know it by heart), knit or read to relax and de-stress. They calm my mind and distract stressful thoughts.

Pets: Spending time with our beloved furry friends is a true blessing. They give us unconditional love. I am thankful that at 9 years old my wise son insisted we adopt our first cat. I will never again be cat-free!

Max, Newton, Whitey, Smokey

How do you deal with stress?

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Joelle Buck
    3 years ago

    I don’t know why but my comment posted and I was not done! Little things like this keep happening and I am walking a very thin line with “losing it”… Well. I will breath and try to finish❤…. I seem to be overwhelmed and my emotions have been quite raw. I have asked for prayer and have reached out and started activley started to comment here at ( since it is here that I find I can finally see postings of how I am dealing with things others around me do not understand.. I am thinking of ” not doing Christmas” next year and actually.doing more to celebrate New Year with all those close to me. appears that ” I don’t and have not enjoyed or even can handle all the outside influences that have made this such a stressful time.of.the year. Taking care of self.keeping things simmple,and eliminating triggers, is what I am aiming for. Stress makes us sick and we have to avoid it at all costs. Being mindful to not get into “mindgrinding”(as I call it ) and to pick up and do something productive. Maybe do it like…. ok “I will wash all the plates and than to reevaluate.
    Babv steps… I too , finally, got my dishes done a last night a, after two weeks, I slept better and feel hopeful. I always tell myself ” THIS TOO SHALL PASS”. I think the Xmas tree is going into the dumpster today. I will get very small one on clearance after Xmas! (Awesome I won’t have huge cleanup.)
    … I am send prayers and wishes for you to you too to use this as a time of being healing rather than defeating. Thanks skool much for posting .I am going to share your story with those close to me so they can see that it’s not “just me” powerlessness sucks until we embrace it and use it for good.

  • Cathy Chester moderator author
    3 years ago

    I’m so glad you shared here with us, Joelle. The holidays can certainly be a difficult time for us. You sound like you’re on the right track and I hope you continue to find ways to help you feel more peaceful within yourself. I’m thrilled – very thrilled – that you found my piece helpful. Sharing it with others? That spreads the word that despite MS we can take care of ourselves in a way that’s both nurturing and necessary.

    Peace to you always and I hope the new year finds you with better health, joy and lasting peace.

  • DonnaFA moderator
    3 years ago

    Hi Joelle, no worries, it happens to all of us, and to me more than I’d like to admit, lol. We’re glad that you’re here and that you find community here.

    Your system sounds like a sound one, and you should be proud that you’ve found a way to feel accomplished and to be gentle with yourself at the same time. That’s very often hard to do.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts! -Warmly, Donna ( team)

  • Joelle Buck
    3 years ago

    …YES…I have been feeling the same exact way for a couple of weeks. I don’t know why but for the past three years this has happened. I live alone and I.think

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