When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.’ Psalm 94:19
Modeled in God’s own image, our minds have the power to create. We have the ability to produce positive things as well as negative things. One of the negative things our minds are able to create is anxiety. This usually begins with the two words ‘what if’. And from there you can spiral down a tunnel of anxious thoughts. The deeper you go into it, the further away from your present reality it takes you.
Lately, I am seeing a growing number of people around me suffer from anxiety, crumbling under the pressure that comes with the demands of everyday life and uncertainty about the future, pertaining to work, finances, relationships, finding contentment and purpose, health, and so on.
A friend that has been suffering from frequent anxiety attacks recently told me about ‘grounding’, which is a technique one can use to calm themselves down in the midst of an anxiety attack.
Grounding is a method that helps keep someone in the present. It helps reorient them to the here-and-now reality. Grounding skills can be helpful in managing overwhelming feelings or intense anxiety. The exercises help the person regain their mental focus from an often intensely emotional state.
These exercises include listing five things you can see, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste.
Anxiety disconnects you from your present reality in your mind, making you feel like things are out of control. Grounding helps because it brings you back to your present reality, where you realise that things are actually under control.
There are health conditions that may lead a person to suffer from anxiety, which require medical attention, so I am not at all suggesting that it’s all imagined in the mind. The anxiety I am referring to here is the overwhelming feeling resulting from fearful thoughts and worry.
In moments where stress leads you into feeling like things are spiraling out of control, you can ground yourself by remembering the truth that God is always in control. He is the Lord over all, and has given you the authority to overcome all things, through His spirit which lives inside of you. He said that will never leave you or forsake you. He has written your name on the palm of His hands. Meaning that you are always on His mind. And He is always working things out for your own good, even when you cannot see it.
‘So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.’
– Isaiah 41:10
The more you focus on the cause of your anxiety, the more you fuel it. Finding a positive distraction can help you prevent spiraling down the anxiety tunnel. Holding on to the truth can help you stay grounded when the devil tries to knock you off your feet with his lies.
With all the terrible things happening around us, we have many reasons why we would be anxious. Times are tough and the future is uncertain. But we can find comfort in knowing that our God is sovereign over all and nothing ever catches Him off-guard. He is able to turn all the fiery arrows the devil throws at us into rockets that shoot us up to the next level of living He created us for.
Remember that God has not given you a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind (see 2 Timothy 1:7 NKJV). He has given you all the tools you need to overcome the enemy.
‘You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.’
– Isaiah 26:3
If you are overwhelmed with anxiety and need prayer, or a listening ear, contact our Hope Centre on the details below.
Liza | 012 368 2444 | firstname.lastname@example.org