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3 Steps to Cope with Anxiety

By Ruth Pearce

Feeling stressed and anxious? Know a few people who are feeling the same way? Here are three steps to engage your character strengths and mindfulness to change perspective.

1. Reflect & Observe without Reacting

Use honesty to acknowledge how you feel and curiosity and judgment to reflect on which character strengths are most engaged or disengaged in this moment.

2. Reframe & Describe

Choose 1-3 different strengths to focus on, and look at the source of your anxiety through the lens of those strengths.

3. Rejoice, Act with Awareness and without Judgment

Notice even the smallest change in the intensity of your anxiety and acknowledge that physically in some way to engage your zest and humor.

For Example:

Selena is worried about changing jobs.

Reflect & Observe without Reacting If Selena cannot imagine that she will be successful because she doesn't believe in herself, that is taking humility too far! And if she feels like she pulled the wool over their eyes in the interview, this assumes that they don’t know how to interview people. Selena is overusing judgment and maybe not using social intelligence so well.

Reframe & Describe If Selena approaches this new job with curiosity, kindness and bravery - being curious about what she might learn, kind to herself when she doesn't know how to do something right away, and being nervous and doing it anyway - that makes this more of an adventure. No one knows it all on day one!

Rejoice, Act with Awareness and without Judgment Woohoo! (jumping up and down!) Just thinking about this as an adventure makes the nerves more bearable for Selena. They have not gone away, but that is okay. Sometimes being nervous is the right thing to be in the moment!

Explore More Strategies to Apply Your Strengths and Thrive

After you've completed the VIA Survey, your Total 24 Report provides the most thorough review of your 24 character strengths with the latest research-backed practices linking each of your strengths to different positive life outcomes such as greater happiness, higher achievement, better health and stronger relationships.