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Feeling Anxious at Work? Ask Yourself These Four Questions

Anxiety Vs Negative Emotion

Negative emotions (lack of confidence, toxic energy, fear) can also cause anxiety. The difference between the two is the feeling of being unsafe that comes with anxiety.

When you are anxious, the ability to think clearly is lost, and so is the perspective. Breathing exercises and making space in your mind by slowing down is the first step towards remaining calm in this general state of anxiety.

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Feeling Anxious at Work? Ask Yourself These Four Questions

Feeling Anxious at Work? Ask Yourself These Four Questions

https://99u.adobe.com/articles/64757/feeling-anxious-at-work-ask-yourself-these-four-questions

99u.adobe.com

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Key Ideas

Workplace Anxiety

It happens when you feel restless and stuck, and you have a sense of vague fear which leads to unproductiveness. It is an existential feeling that is hard to articulate. A constant sense of 'fight or flight' running inside your mind. To tackle this problem:

  • Recognizing and identifying the feeling.
  • Developing the courage to make meaningful changes.

Anxiety Vs Negative Emotion

Negative emotions (lack of confidence, toxic energy, fear) can also cause anxiety. The difference between the two is the feeling of being unsafe that comes with anxiety.

When you are anxious, the ability to think clearly is lost, and so is the perspective. Breathing exercises and making space in your mind by slowing down is the first step towards remaining calm in this general state of anxiety.

Objectify The Problem

Start journaling, asking specific questions to bring the main issue in focus, to get organized and gain clarity. Ask yourself these four questions:

  1. What feels wrong?
  2. How can the problem be defined?
  3. What are the fears with regards to making changes?
  4. What actions can be taken that would improve the situation?

Taking Action

Anxiety can sometimes be the manifestation of a void in our reality.

  • Taking the help of a trustworthy colleague is a good start to understand the root cause of the problem.
  • Coming in terms with and getting comfortable with the present moment can provide us with clarity on what we need to do to change things.

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Trick your brain into calm
  • Become aware of your safety and breathing. Your fight or flight response may be in overdrive. 
  • Take note of five things you can see, four things you can hear, three ...
Using affirmations

Remind yourself how awesome you are with affirmations. Write down affirmations that remind you of your capabilities and strengths and keep them somewhere you can find them if nerves strike.

Another suggestion is to keep a file of praise, awards, and other evidence of how good you are at your job an read them when you are struggling with a confidence crisis.

Get clear about your feelings

Take a moment to really analyze what you’re feeling and strategize for that.

Can you reframe negative feelings, like fear, into something more positive, like anticipation? If not, remind yourself that it’s perfectly normal to be nervous before a high-stakes situation. 

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Trim the fat

Multitasking and directing your energy to unimportant tasks and activities will overwhelm and prevent you from being productive.

Focus on your 3 to 5 ...

Measure your results

To assist you with measuring results instead of time, keep done lists to feel more motivated and focused.

Have an attitude adjustment

We are more effective at work when we have a positive attitude. 

good attitude at work will help you set standards for your work and ensure that you're taking responsibility for yourself.

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Defense Mechanisms

Our defense mechanisms really kick into high gear during situations where we feel threatened. That doesn’t necessarily mean physically threatened, but also in high-stress environments where ...

Avoidance

Mechanism motto: I’m going to stay as far away from that stressful thing as possible.

The problem with avoidance: Things don’t go away just because you ignore them. That assignment will still need to get done. That conflict with that co-worker will need to be resolved eventually.

Denial

Mechanism motto: There’s no way that’s going to happen.

The problem with denial: Denial is more than just avoiding a potentially threatening thought or circumstance—it involves vehemently denying the fact that it even exists. It blinds you with unrealistic optimism.

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The signs of burnout
  • You dread going to work in the morning.
  • You show up late or find reasons to leave early.
  • You feel bored or don’t want to engage with the work when you’re there.
  • You’re ...
Find friends outside of work

If your only friends are your friends at work, it'll be more challenging to avoid work on evenings and weekends. If you do have coworkers as close friends, consider setting some boundaries around work talk.

Try to avoid getting drawn into office drama, as it will increase the time you spend talking and thinking about work.

Speak up

Speak up when your workload is too much. Tell your boss if you are stretched too thin or when you regularly work too many hours. Talk about what you can reasonably get done in a week.

Also, don't say yes to everything. If you have a hard time saying no, don't respond immediately. Instead say, "Let me get back to you", or, "Let me think about that."

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When you’re feeling overwhelmed

You have so many things going on, that it is hard to concentrate on any one of them, and so you get less productive. The trick is to get yourself back in the sweet spot of the curve where yo...

Reduce your energy

If you’re actively feeling overwhelmed you first need to calm downClose your eyes for a minute. Focus on breathing deeply. Count your breaths. An alternative is to get a little physical exercise. Take a walk.

The combination of the exercise and the separation from your workspace for a short period of time can help you to get into the zone to get work done.

Focus

Start by finding a high-priority task that you feel you can complete in a short period of time. Clear the decks for action and put away any other distractions.

Now, get to work. If you’re still having trouble concentrating, then just try to get a 5-10 minute burst of activity done. Find the smallest piece of the task that you can accomplish and get that done. 

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Figure out your needs

People tend to feel badly about themselves when they feel powerless to get their needs met. 

Clarify for yourself what you need and don't expect others to fulfill your every want. 

Live authentically

Standing up for yourself and living a life that is authentically yours generates positive self-views.

You have to start thinking about how you will communicate your needs, how you will start creating a life that meets your needs, and what you will do if people in your life can’t meet those needs.

Forgive yourself

Almost everyone has said something hurtful, forgotten an important event, or betrayed someone they love.

We have to remember that our mistakes do not define us. If we learn and grow from them, then they make us better people. Forgive yourself, and give yourself credit for trying not to make the same mistakes again.

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Breathing exercises

Breathing is at the core of ancient (and currently trendy) mindfulness practices, from yoga and tai chi to meditation.

However, studies suggest that breathing exercises alone, derived from...

Deep, controlled breathing

It involves filling the lungs to the max and goes by various names like belly or diaphragmatic breathing.

It has been linked to improved cognitive performance, lower stress levels, and lower blood pressure.

Breathing and yoga
Belief in the benefits of controlled breathing goes back centuries.

Central to ancient Hindu philosophy was prana, described as vital “airs” or “energies” flowing through the body. Stemming from that belief, yoga was built on pranayama or breath retention. 

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Symptoms of the new virus

Common symptoms: chest tightness and shortness of breath. But these are also common symptoms of anxiety.

People with anxiety may continue to worry that they are getting sick, even if they...

Anxiety chest tightness

If you are experiencing chest tightness or shortness of breath now, ask yourself first:

  • Are you someone with a history of anxiety, especially if it is tied to health concerns?
  • If yes, did your symptoms show up while reading news about the virus?
  • Do you find it hard to focus on other things?

Paying too much attention is called hypervigilance and body scanning. It is associated with anxiety.

Anxiety causes shortness of breath

The brain is very powerful. We can see a positive pregnancy test and immediately develop morning sickness. Anxious people can read about the shortness of breath and instantly develop it.

However, shortness of breath is also tied to the way anxious people breathe. Anxious people breathe fast and too shallow. They blow off too much CO2, which makes them feel dizzy and makes their chest feel tight.

To alleviate the symptoms, breathe in slowly through your nose, count to four seconds, and then breathe out slowly through pursed lips. It will normalize your CO2 levels.

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Emotional Clarity And Depression

Studies have found that just having negative feelings isn’t enough to lead to depressive symptoms. You also have to be unable to put a name to your feeling state, and then dwell on trying to ide...

Emotional Regulation

 Is your ability to modulate or control the type of emotion you’re feeling, how long you feel that emotion, how strong it is, and whether you can turn it from negative to positive. Good emotional regulation, lets you get over negative feelings relatively quickly.

Having bad emotional clarity is thought to lead to low emotional regulation, which is linked to depression and rumination.

Emotional Clarity

Involves your ability to identify what you feel with ease. It affects mental health by predisposing people to depression.

This is a “subjective” ability. There is no external objective reference point for naming your emotions. Emotions are also relative qualities, meaning different people have different definitions and experiences for a given emotion. 

Break it down

Big projects seem overwhelming. Usually, when we're faced with projects like that, we tend to push them to the side in favor of smaller tasks that are easier to tackle.

Turn a big project int...

Make an outline

Having a clear sense of structure in mind when you start writing is really helpful.

So make sure you generate an outline. Start by making a list of the various sections you think you’ll need in your writing project. You can reorder them later. After that, make a list of the more specific elements you need in each section.

Just get something down

Don't get stuck in the process of trying to find the perfect words. Start by drafting something.

Write down a bunch of sentences that relate to the outline you constructed. Then, you can go back and edit, to get rid of everything that doesn’t fit.

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