I remember going to a mindfulness workshop and hearing the presenter say that we can never get rid of a client’s anxiety. The truth is that we all live with a healthy level of anxiety that keeps us on our toes. The presenter explained that if a bear were chasing us we should feel somewhat anxious. That makes sense, of course I would be anxious and fearful and that can help us in situations where the response is warranted. However, at some point we may have a time where anxiety is a big part of our daily life.
In truth anxiety is likely the number one reason people come to see a counsellor. People come in feeling tired, overwhelmed and want immediate relief. Of course as counsellors we are happy to help but unfortunately we don’t have super powers. To reduce anxiety means a commitment to yourself. That includes practicing strategies and doing a bit of homework between sessions.
There’s An App for That
We may not all be techno savvy but if you carry a smart phone and have access to the internet using these tools can be fun, easy and very beneficial. There are apps for your iPhone or Android device that help you take your strategies to go. These apps are particularly helpful if you are working with a counsellor and want to practice strategies between sessions. Podcasts are another fantastic way to increase your learning, implement strategies and maybe even relax for a 10 or 15 minutes while you listen.
MindShift– A collaborative project from Anxiety BC, BC Children’s Hospital, RBC Children’s Mental Health, Provincial Health Services Authority. This app is geared to teens and young adults and includes strategies and tools to tackle things such as perfectionism, test anxiety, worry, conflict and social anxiety. (Free)
Headspace- Treat Your Head Right. They consider themselves a gym membership for the mind. There is a free app and foundation course but to access additional courses and their series on things such as health and relationships there is monthly subscription fee. ($7.95-$12.95 per month) If you like this site then take a look at Andy Puddicome’s Ted Talk, All it takes is 10 mindful minutes.
Worry Box- Anxiety Self Help- For Android (Free) Write down your worries and put them in a worry box. Apple in iTunes (Free)
If you are looking to be a bit more mindful then an article by Mindful give us a list of Free Mindfulness Apps Worthy of Your Attention
If meditation is what you are looking for then take a look at Healthline for The Best Meditation iPhone and Android Apps of the Year.
Anxiety Slayer– they provide a weekly podcast to your inbox. The podcast topics include When we fear our repetitive thoughts, Tips for working for a mental health care professional and 5 Quick and easy ways to calm down when you feel anxious.
Anxiety Guru– There are a number of free podcasts available like You Are Not Alone and there is also a paid membership available if you want access to additional materials
A Quiet Mind by Robert Jackson, podcasts and apps to promote happiness, peace and well being.
Motivation to Move by Scott Smith, A very energetic, motivational speaker who has one of the most popular daily motivation program. His podcasts are about staying positive, reducing stress and focusing on how to get what makes you happy. Examples of his podcast topics are Are You Too Busy To Live Your Life and Good Stress. Bad Stress.