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Overcoming anxiety is something that is possible when we walk out the healing available to us. What is common doesn’t need to be normal for you. Yes, there will be times when your feelings may get big, and anxiousness comes for you. But our God is always bigger than the feelings that come. 

Your feelings have a seat at the table, but they are not the centerpiece. 

Find freedom from your past and hope for your future in my book Face Off with Your Feelings. Get your copy here!

I ignore my real feelings by diving into work.

Working keeps my hands and heart distracted from the weariness that wants to creep in from seasons of change and transition.

When things feel out of my control, I grasp for something I feel I can control, which is how much time I work and keep busy.

The slowness of pen to paper allows my mind to catch up with my heart to feel it in my body.

That’s when waves of sadness can come…

The weight is rejections that I can feel crushed under…

The confusion that tries to convince me I’ll never be enough…

It’s the honesty before God that allows the door to slowly open in my heart because it’s with him that I can be real.

We can’t hide from him.

The Father says, come to me all you who are weary, and he will give you rest.

Our honesty with the Father is when our feelings find transformation.

anxiety

When we want to overcome anxiety or fear, it’s naming our feelings that help them transition from our heart to our heart to find healing. 

The enemy would love to convince you that you are powerless, and have no control over your feelings or thoughts with the Lord. 

Healing is available to you now. The thing about healing is that it has been paid by Jesus’ blood, but we often forget that healing can take time to walk out, but miracles happen in moments. I think when many of us talk about healing, we are thinking of miracles instead of walking out our healing over time. 

It takes faith, time, and patience. Renewing our minds through the word and our relationship with the Father takes time. 

But it also takes intentionality, healing doesn’t just happen to us. It’s active, not passive. 

Stress is short term

Anxiety can linger

I did a podcast on stress which I link in the show notes for you, but “stress is the body and mind’s response to any pressure that disrupts their normal balance. It occurs when our perceptions of events don’t meet our expectations, and we don’t manage our reaction to the disappointment.”

Stress is our perception of the events we are experiencing. 

Anxiety can stem from fear, nervousness, or worry. Situational and emotional triggers can cause someone to experience anxiety. 

Anxiety is a fruit of a deeper belief we carry. It’s a secondary emotion often stemming from your sense of safety being threatened or from a violation of love – which stems from your identity.

Overcoming Anxiousness and Fear

When there is a threat to our safety or love and anxiety arises, it often takes us out of the present moment to the past or to the present. The secondary emotion, anxiety, lives through what has already happened and perceives the possible threat to the future. 

The first tip for overcoming anxiety is attentional control. Attentional control is our ability to concentrate. It’s our ability to choose what we pay attention to. Sometimes our brains have a hard time determining what is safe in the present moment. We may not be experiencing a physical threat. However, when we consider a past situation, we may think we are unsafe. 

In my book Face Off with Your Feelings, I discuss that when we are conscious of our thoughts, they are most pliable because we are aware and can choose what to think. 

Putting this into practice can be simply asking yourself questions or having someone else ask “safety” questions for you. 

For example, if you were to say no to going to an event for work or family dinner, would that situation hurt you? Could that person hurt you? Not truly. 

Do you have to follow the way of everyone else? No, you are an adult and can make your own decisions. 

If you had to walk away from the person you feel hurt by, would you be okay? Yes. In fact, you may recognize the healing that will come from forgiveness through the Lord. 

Attentional control is asking yourself questions in the situation to produce safety. (Again, recognizing this is not dealing with situations where there are perceived physical threats in the present. It allows us to be present to the Holy Spirit and consciously choosing Him. 

The second tip for anxiety is using your senses and practicing awareness to keep you present. One way you can do this is by naming five things you see around you, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste. 

This doubles as gratitude and praising exercise with the Lord thanking him for his blessings and all that you can see, touch, hear, smell, and taste. (We always want to be turning to the Father because apart from him, we can do nothing. We are made in his image.)

Another awareness tip is to say everything you are aware of. For example, I am aware I had mud on my shoes. I am aware I am hungry. I am aware I am sad. 

This helps bring you back to the present and find relief. 

I love how the Lord made our bodies. We do not live carnally, meaning through our senses, but we do get to acknowledge the goodness of God with them. 

The last tip for anxiety is learning to contain your anxiety and the emotions that come with it in a healthy way. Some would call this containment. For example, closing your journal after being honest with God about your feelings is a symbolic act of containment. Once you close the journal, you are leaving distressing emotions, memories, sensations, and thoughts there. You know they are safe there. This isn’t the same as ignoring your feelings. Little by little, you can take them out of containment and process through them with the Lord and trusted people. 

Another example is visualizing (since our imagination is so powerful), giving each individual feeling over to God. I want you to close your eyes for this and picture yourself and Jesus with you, with his hand outstretched, taking every feeling from you. 

Let your feelings come before the Lord. It’s where they are safe, secure, and seen.

Anxiety isn’t something you have to accept. It may be common, but it doesn’t mean it has to be normal. 

Scriptures for Anxiety

1 John 4:18

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” 

2 Timothy 1:7

“for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”

Isaiah 40:31

“But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

Psalm 94:19

“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.”

Proverbs 3:5-6

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”

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