Anxiety and Me Here’s my big secret: I’ve got anxiety. Not the “Oh dahling, would you hand me my pills?” kind as I languish in my king-sized Cherry Wood, four-post bed. Not the “Gee, I feel a bit nervous” kind.
The kind that keeps tabs on your life and, just when you think you’ve really hit the smoothest part of the ocean and are sailing full speed ahead captain!, calls in the greatest winds it can muster and throws you overboard into the biggest waves you’ve ever seen. And all of the energy that was going into sailing is desperately trying to keep you from drowning. Except, of course, there are no waves. It’s the same ocean. You just can’t handle it anymore, all of a sudden.
Anxiety and You? Here’s another big secret: I know lots and lots and lots of people with this kind of anxiety. Medicated or meditating, they’ve got it and they want to hide it. Especially if they are in any kind of caretaking or health-inducing role. Like, say, a yoga teacher. I want to shine a light on it.
First up: A quick-and-easy way to find your anchor in the storm.
Child’s Pose/Balasana – Come to all fours: knees and hands on the floor – Sink your sit bones back to your heels, and let your forehead come to the floor. Use a blanket, a yoga block, or anything at all to support your forehead if you like – Make sure your knees are far enough apart that you can belly-breathe between them – Bring your arms overhead on the floor, bent at your elbows, with your hands resting one on top of the other, close to your head – Begin to practice long, deep, yogic breath – For even more anxiety-eradicating oomph, cover your whole self with a blanket, even your head. Make a cocoon – Be here for at least 5-10 minutes; as long as your knees can handle – Come back for more if you need to
This pose, especially with the blanket, really works for me when I just need to feel safe and warm for a bit. The breath, as always, is vital.
What ways work for you? How do you deal with stress or anxiety? I’d really love to hear from you, and, if you feel comfortable sharing, others probably would too.