9. Supporting A Loved One With Anxiety

Be sure you’re caring for yourself as number one.

Put on your oxygen mask before helping someone else. Take stock of your own mental health. Make sure you’re centred, you’re doing the things that you need to do, before trying to help a loved one that’s struggling with anxiety. Check you’re eating well, sleeping well and managing your own levels of anxiety.

  • Understand that it’s not your responsibility to meet their needs with urgency.
  • Limit your offers to things you can actually follow through on.
  • Get a professional diagnosis when dealing with children.

Quick Tips:

  • Let your loved ones know that you are there for them.
    This can significantly help a loved one, just to that someone else knows about their situation and cares for them.
  • Don’t pass judgement.
    The minute you seem to be judging a person who is struggling with anxiety, they will pull away. 
  • Put yourself in their shoes.
    Things that can seem irrational to us could really be impacting your loved one. Try putting yourself in their shoes and imagine what it’s like to be so responsive to things happening around them that shouldn’t be a trigger or feel so bad.
  • Let your loved one know that you understand.
    Express that you understand, potentially even by sharing your own experiences and that you will help them through.
  • Help your loved one live a healthy lifestyle.
    Consider if you could go to a yoga class with them. Just the fact they are walking in with you will motivate them and make them feel less intimidated.
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