In this weeks podcast we're talking about what makes health anxiety worse, and what you can do to cultivate the attitude of gratitude that shrinks anxiety and leaves us free to make supportive choices for our body, mind and soul.
This epsiode of Anxiety Slayer is sponosored by Inspired Living Publishing and their International Best Selling New Book, Opening to Gratitude and Grace. Get your copy today and receive 60 free gifts! www.GratitudeandGracebook.com
Podcast notes: What makes health anxiety worse?
Getting into symptoms
- Don’t Google them!
- Zooming in on sensations
- Feeling stuck in fear thoughts
Keeping it inside
- Talk to someone
- Get support
Being hard on yourself
- Most people have some concern over their health
- No-one likes the thought of illness, or pain
- Educate yourself, find approaches that feel positive to you and start making some supportive changes.
Loosing sight of your present reality
- Health anxiety is a future projected worry
Gratitude: one thing that helps makes anxiety better…
Cultivate a practice of gratitude for the health you do have even if it’s as simple as appreciating the gift of sight, hearing, being able to walk or being free from pain. These are all gifts. Treasure them. Fear about health is constricting; when we allow the mind free reign to worry it will run riot and look for more and more evidence to support our worse fears. It will also rob us of a balanced perspective by tipping our perception into the realms of fear.
Gratitude is a way for us to appreciate what we have right here, right now. Gratitude helps us focus on what we have instead of what we lack.
The Benefits of cultivating gratitude
It brings present moment awareness: "I am here. And right now, in this moment, I’m OK."
It allows space to reflect and make supportive choices
Gratitude is a powerful antidote to anxiety
It gives gives perspective (broader vision)
Helps us get unstuck
Helps us realise what we do have (anxiety often negates or minimises the things that help us)
Appreciation is a key to deeper connection. Maybe others in our life don’t fully understand our anxieties but there is always something we can be grateful for in our relationships, even if it’s a small and simple thing like someone bringing you a cup of tea. Maybe they want to help, but they don’t know how. Look for things to appreciate and keep connected.
4 Ways to practice gratitude to calm health anxiety
Write a gratitude note
Write a note to another, or send a card expressing gratitude and appreciation.
Practice a gratitude meditation
Send thanks and loving appreciation to someone who has helped you. It might be someone you know, or someone you don’t know personally but through their work or teachings, for example, an author.
You can meditate on a favourite place in nature with gratitude too. A park, a river, a tree, somewhere you felt rested and restored. Spend a few minutes immersing yourself in grateful recollection.
Keep a gratitude journal
This can be as simple or as ornate as you like. You could even have two journals, a tiny pocket version that you carry with you for noticing little things to be thankful for throughout the day. Appreciations of nature, a beautiful bird singing, an elderly person struggling to carry groceries without complaint, the scent of a flower.
And a desk version for deeper immersion, maybe you’d like to add a sketch, or decorate your pages in colour. Press a flower, keep a note, a photo, or a ticket from an event or journey that brought you some joy.
Make a gratitude board
Use a notice board and decorate and fill it with photos, notes, sketches, doodles from yourself or loved ones. You could also add some inspiring quotes, or a list of simple gratitude stop. Keep it somewhere where you will see it often and make a point of visiting it, reading, reflecting and adding to it.
We hope you found this episode supportive.