The Unsettling Feelings of Anxiety!

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From childhood to adulthood— at some point in your life you’ve experienced an anxious moment. It’s a part of the usual human emotions that we all feel however it affects different people in many different ways. How you handle it is based upon how you view the feeling of nervousness, how you’ve seen others handle it, ways in which you’ve mostly handled it, what you think about yourself when experiencing it and your ability to control it.

Have you ever felt nervous about doing a speech in front of a class? Mostly everyone has some nerve-wracking feeling before but many can feel calmer when the speech is over. Have you ever sat in class after a speech and started to worry more about how others viewed your speech and things that you could’ve done differently with the speech? Did it linger on to the point where you lost focus and wasn’t able to hear the other student’s speeches?

This is just one example of how an anxious moment transitions into a full-blown episode of anxiety. One that becomes physically uncomfortable and hard to break free from once you’re in it. How do you manage this better? Have you tried taking deep breaths to calm you down and it didn’t work? Have you tried to distract yourself by doing an activity but you still find it hard to focus? Once you’ve reached this point, your brain has been invested in the situation. That’s why it’s important to implement skills to help you better handle it. Many people turn to unhealthy ways to manage anxiety rather it be cigarettes, food, alcohol, sex, or gossip. All these things provide you with an outlet of distraction however it does not help fix the underlying cause!

So what could the underlying cause look like? It could be fear of being rejected by others, fear that you will be harmed in some way or another person will be harmed, anger about lack of control over a situation, person or thing, fear of abandonment and the list could go on!

So why do we choose to focus on something that causes us great stress and fear? Sometimes it’s as simple as the fact that this is normal behavior for society. There isn’t a clear blueprint that’s given out to the masses of people that say “Hey, you’re going to be anxious about some things however you can handle it another way besides stressing about it.”

Overall, you want to find out what works best for you to tackle anxiety before it attacks you. What does this look like? It ranges from many different things such as how you respond to fears in general, your interactions with people, control over your life, or things that you do routinely to bring you peace.

Setting healthy boundaries for yourself is most important! Boundaries can give you an outlet to hold yourself accountable for the things that you do and how you respond. Boundaries teach you how to treat yourself and how others are to treat you.

Besides boundaries here are some other things that you can do:

  • Pray or meditate to release the emotion and find comfort and peace.
  • Listen to soothing music such as frequency sounds to calm you.
  • Write about your experience through journaling, poetry, songwriting or storytelling.
  • Talk to a trustworthy friend, family member, or colleague about what’s bothering you.
  • Engage in physical activities such as walking, jogging or running for 15 minutes.
  • Dance and sing to your favorite song as if you’re performing.
  • Color or do a crossword puzzle.
  • Watch your favorite comedy or tv show.
  • Spend time near a body of water or an open area where you can connect with nature.
  • Pick an activity that always brings you joy and do it!

Check out our Wellness Services & Products page for additional resources.

Shawnee Palmer, LCSW, LAC
Alpine’s Empowerment Agency, LLC
Shawnee@alpinesempowermentagency.com
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Teaching Your Child Self-Love

It’s important that children are given not only shelter, food & clothing but tools to help them to love themselves. Unfortunately, this is a common skill that kids lack! It’s a caretaker’s responsibility to provide kids with tools to help them feel more confident about themselves. This could minimize anxiety and depressive symptoms in addition to self-harming behaviors. This is just a quick reference, however if you have other options to add, please feel free to leave a comment with the suggestion!

1. Teach your kids about their characteristics.

2. Normalize the behaviors that do not cause harm to themselves or others.

3. Avoid calling them weird if they do things differently from you.

4. Support & encourage their interests.

5. Talk to them to get a better understanding of the things they enjoy.

6. Normalize their differences from others by making them feel good & not bad.

7. Find things that are unique about yourself and share it with them.

8. Allow them to make mistakes! Remember you were once their age and didn’t know it all.

Check out our Wellness Services & Products page for additional resources.

Shawnee Palmer, LCSW, LAC
Alpine’s Empowerment Agency, LLC
Shawnee@alpinesempowermentagency.com
Bj’s Bookstore
Reiki/Coaching

Bully Interventions for Parents/Caregivers

In today’s society, bullying is being taken to an extreme where kids are fearful of peers/attending school, self-harming, traumatized, committing suicide and have low self-esteem amongst many other things. It’s a topic that has been normalized in the past and written off as usual kid behavior. However, is usual kid behavior more harmful than it used to be?

Bullying is difficult to prevent however following up with your children, school officials and other youth can soothe a bullying event and cause less damage to the child if there is a quick follow-up.

Have routine conversations with your children about appropriate and inappropriate talk with peers.

  1. Teach them how to express their emotions and manage them.
  2. Notify school officials to report the bullying and get a clear understanding of their policy and what next steps are going to be taken on their behalf.
  3. Provide your children with extra support and positive affirmations to help them positively view themselves.
  4. Speak with them about bullying and attempt to refrain from showing aggressive emotions in response.
  5. Show that you’re in control so that they feel protected giving you the information.
  6. Encourage your child to think about how it would feel if they were the other child who is being bullied.
  7. Teach them alternative ways to control & manage their anger ie: talking about their feelings to a friend or family member, reading a book, journaling, or doing physical activities.
  8. Keep them involved or connected with a community agency that encourages self-love and teaches life skills.

Check out our Wellness Services & Products page for additional resources.

Shawnee Palmer, LCSW, LAC
Alpine’s Empowerment Agency, LLC
Shawnee@alpinesempowermentagency.com
Bj’s Bookstore
Reiki/Coaching

Limited, Emotional Support System

Are you always considered the strong one within your family, a circle of friends, colleagues or relationships in GENERAL? Tired of feeling like you have no outlet to expressing yourself and seeking guidance?

The role that you play in other’s lives is mighty but pouring from an empty cup leaves you, well EMPTY! Here’s an article that gives you tips on things that you can do to overcome feelings of not being supported.

Be sure to download your free worksheet on “Converting Your Weaknesses into STRENGTHS!”

Life can be hard however, you don’t have to just let it be! You have the power to do so much more!

Here are some ways to better handle having a lack of support within your life:
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1. Make a list of specific things that you desire to have support on ie: relationship issues, entrepreneurship challenges, expression of feelings towards stressors, etc.

2. Write about your ideal support system and visualize what that would look like.

3. Identify people who have been willing to be supportive of you and spend more time with them.

4. Identify those who have not been supportive and minimize expectations of them. Find alternative things that they provide you with and set boundaries with yourself to prevent the build-up of negative emotions towards them.

5. Connect with people who have similar interests as you.

6. Attend networking or social events by yourself. By doing this, you will place yourself in a position to connect with more people.

7. Seek support groups within your local area or via online communities.

Check out our Wellness Services & Products page for additional resources.

Shawnee Palmer, LCSW, LAC
Alpine’s Empowerment Agency, LLC
Shawnee@alpinesempowermentagency.com
Bj’s Bookstore
Reiki/Coaching

Overcoming Fear

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I had the pleasure of jumping off of this cliff into the water with my 11 year old son on July 28, 2018. We were with family at a beach. The cliff was only 10 feet from the water but it looked like it was 100 feet. Yes, I am being dramatic! I was filled with so much fear that I knew it was time for me to overcome it. We walked to the cliff and looked down then changed our minds. We weren’t ready so we turned around to walk back to the beach area. Then all of a sudden I got a sudden feeling that we needed to take that leap. I thought to myself “This is going to open new doors for our bond.” So I spoke with my son about trying it again. He was all for it. So we talked & hyper ourselves up on our way back to the cliff. We walked up, held hands and jumped off the cliff! While I was in the water, I felt like I was drowning even though I had on a life jacket. I kept trying to gasp for air meanwhile, I look over at my son and he’s doing fine. He was acting normal as if nothing major had just happened while I was panicking! After a while I was able to gather my thoughts and focus on getting out of the way so that the next set of people could jump. All of this was within a few minutes time frame, however it felt like it was an eternity!

I then reflected on the event after I was calm and later again a few days after the jump.

I had intentions of holding my sons hand throughout the entire experience. Well my son told me I let his hand go before we jumped in the water 😂. Everyone else told me I had this puzzled look on my face. He handled it all very well during and after the jump, while I, on the other hand was gasping and moving slowly & repeating to him “I can’t breath,” while barely opening my eyes.

The thing about anxiety is that we sometimes create these irrational fears. Fears of the unknown or fear of the action that we take potentially causing damage in some way. Sometimes it’s necessary to take that risk to experience what the outcome would be for us.

4 Things I Learned That Day:

  1. Fear held me back from holding my sons hand throughout the course of the event.
  2. Fear stopped me from enjoying the experience.
  3. Pushing myself to do the activity opened up a bunch of thoughts where I felt fearless, powerful & happy.
  4. I am in total control of what I fear. I have a choice of whether or not I want to let go of the fear.

Overall, the activity did not go as planned but I accomplished something I had been holding off on doing. I now imagine, “What if I had done it sooner?”

Picture yourself doing something that you strongly desire but having fear that it will not work out as planned. If you do it now, you will be able to grow from the experience sooner rather than later.

Download my mini workbook to help you start overcoming that fear! *Click Here* (USE the code “OVER” during checkout.

Shawnee Palmer, LCSW, LAC
Alpine’s Empowerment Agency, LLC
Shawnee@alpinesempowermentagency.com
Love & Serenity Wellness