WHEN A FAMILY MEMBER STRUGGLES WITH FEAR AND ANXIETY
by Stan Popovich 4/27/2007 / Family
Do you have a family member who struggles with fear and anxiety? It can be difficult to sit by and watch the person you love struggle while you are unable to do anything. Enclosed is a list of things that you can do to help the person overcome his or her own battle with anxiety and fear.
Learn as much as you can in managing anxiety and depression. There are many books and information that will educate you on how to deal with fear and anxiety. Share this information with the person who is struggling. Education is the key in finding the answers your looking for in managing your fears.
Be understanding and patient with the person struggling with their fears. Dealing with depression and anxiety can be difficult for the person so do not add more problems than what is already there.
The person struggling with the anxiety must realize that managing anxiety and fear takes practice. So when experiencing an anxiety related situation, begin to learn what works, what doesn't work, and what you need to improve on in managing your fears and anxieties. For instance, you have a lot of anxiety and you decide to take a walk to help you feel better. The next time you feel anxious you can remind yourself that you got through it the last time by taking a walk. This will give you the confidence to manage your anxiety the next time around.
Challenge their negative thinking with positive statements and realistic thinking. When encountering thoughts that make your fearful or anxious, challenge those thoughts by asking yourself questions that will maintain objectivity and common sense. For example, your afraid that if you do not get that job promotion then you will be stuck at your job forever. This depresses you, however your thinking in this situation is unrealistic. The fact of the matter is that there all are kinds of jobs available and just because you don't get this job promotion doesn't mean that you will never get one. In addition, people change jobs all the time, and you always have that option of going elsewhere if you are unhappy at your present location. Changing your thinking can help you manage your fears.
Another thing to remember is that things change and events do not stay the same. For instance, you may feel overwhelmed today with your anxiety and feel that this is how you will feel the rest of the week or month. This isn't correct. No one can predict the future with one hundred percent accuracy. Even if the thing that you feared does happen there are circumstances and factors that you can't predict which can be used to your advantage. You never know when the help and answers you are looking for will come to you.
When a family member struggles with fear and anxiety, get them to seek help from a professional. The key is to be patient, take it slow, and not to give up. In time, you will be able to find those resources that will help them with their problems.
Stan Popovich is the author of "A Layman's Guide to Managing Fear Using Psychology, Christianity and Non Resistant Methods" - an easy to read book that presents a general overview of techniques that are effective in managing persistent fears and anxieties. For info go to: http://www.managingfear.com