Category Archives: Anxiety

Facing Anxiety During A Major Life Change: Michigan Anxiety Therapy

life change

Most people experience anxiety during a major life change. Starting a new job, moving to a new town, getting into a new relationship – all of these moments are prefaced with some form of trepidation. You may not be able to get rid of this anxiety entirely, but you can control how you handle it when the time comes. Here are some tips for facing anxiety during a major life change.

Focus On The Future

You decided to make this change because it was going to improve your future. Don’t lose sight of that. Think about the positive experiences to come, like financial stability or better job security. Change is inherently scary because you don’t truly know what the future will hold. If you focus on the positives though, you are more likely to get past your nerves and move forward.

Lean On Your Support System

Your friends and family are there to support you no matter where life takes you. Talk to them during this time so they can encourage you about your future. If you have a therapist to work with, you can talk to them about your anxiety and healthy ways to overcome it. Your therapist can recommend coping mechanisms specific to your personality.

Use The Anxiety As Motivation

Any time you feel anxiety, you can either let it defeat you or let it inspire you. Consider those jitters as an extra push to get through the transition and enjoy the great experiences to come. You can turn fear into excitement if you start looking at it from a positive perspective. The sooner you get into this next chapter in your life, the better you will feel.

Think About Past Changes You’ve Made

This isn’t the first time you made a major life change. There are dozens of changes in your past that you got through. Those changes led you to where you are today and all the positive experiences you have had. You felt just as anxious then as you do now, and you made it out successfully. This transition will go the same way.

Prepare As Much As Possible

If you are well prepared for the changes to come, you won’t be as nervous about them. Make lists of tasks you need to complete, and check them off one by one. If you need money to make the transition, save as much as you can in advance. When you feel confident about a major life change, everything will seem to fall into place.

Pros And Cons Of Online Schooling For Anxious Children (Part 2): Anxiety Therapy MI

child anxiety

Continued from Part 1

PRO: Personalized Education

Children with anxiety may have different learning requirements than other students. The same can be said for children with ADHD, dyslexia, autism, and more. Online schooling allows each student to get a personalized curriculum that is tailored to his or her needs. If a certain subject sparks anxiety from stress, the student can take a longer time on that work to reduce the anxiety symptoms. The class schedule is adjusted to fit the child, which may help a child with anxiety get better grades and feel more confident in school.

CON: A Lack Of Independence

Sometimes the lack of social interaction from online learning will cause a child to get extremely attached to the stay-at-home parent. Children who go to a traditional school learn independence from their time with other students. They may take on leadership roles in the classroom or find a club they excel in. This is hard to do at home. A boost of confidence may help a child with anxiety learn to overcome some of their fears and phobias.

If your child is enrolled in an anxiety counseling program like the ones we offer at Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers in Michigan, you can learn how to encourage independence within the family. Find hobbies that your child likes to do on his own so you can establish healthy boundaries and relationship dynamics. The anxiety counselor will be there to help every step of the way.

PRO: Creative Learning Opportunities

Because of the personalization that comes with online learning, parents have a chance to find creative ways to educate their kids. They are not limited to the rigid structure of a classroom, so they can find what works best for their child’s learning abilities. With that said, it is important for children to learn in a traditional way so they can adapt to teaching methods as adults.

CON: Difficulty Finding Personal Interests

One of the great benefits to traditional schooling is that children have a chance to experiment with interests and activities. They can attend music class, art class, computer class, physical education and more. They also have access to clubs within the school which may tap into an interest they haven’t discovered. That is difficult to replicate in a house. Working with a homeschool group like we mentioned in Part 1 of this guide will give your child more opportunities to find his or her true passions in life.

PRO: Reduced Performance Pressure

Online schooling still has the same general requirements as traditional schooling, but the pressure feels less intense. A child doesn’t have to constantly worry about getting better grades than his classmates or finishing a test on time. The process is much more carefree. There are still strict testing schedules that children must follow, but as a whole, most homeschooled children feel at ease with their curriculum.

CON: Self-Motivation

Self-motivation is a great trait to have. However, when it comes to online learning, a child is forced to constantly push himself or herself to do school work. At school, there is a thin veil of pressure over all the students to compete with their classmates to succeed. At home, the situation is much more relaxed. Older children in particular may become complacent with their “easy” schedule in an online school, which may hurt their productivity levels in the future. You, the parent, must strive to keep your child motivated in school so his or her academic performance does not suffer.

For more help with childhood anxiety, contact Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers today.

Pros And Cons Of Online Schooling For Anxious Children: Anxiety Therapy MI

online schooling

Online schooling was once reserved for college-level students, but it is becoming increasingly common for school-aged children as well. Children with anxiety may thrive in online schooling because they can complete their education at home without the pressure of a classroom. With that in mind, web-based instruction isn’t ideal for everyone. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of online schooling for anxious children.

PRO: Learning In A Controlled Environment

Schools try to be as structured as possible, but it’s hard for a teacher to control 20 kids at once. A child with anxiety may be overwhelmed by the constant hustle and bustle of traditional classes. With online schooling, education happens at home. The student is in a highly controlled environment that is tailored to his or her needs. This is a form of personalized training that cannot be replicated in an actual classroom.

CON: Limited Social Interaction

A child who learns online will not have the same amount of exposure to social settings as a child in school. This may hurt the child later on when he or she has to get a job, form personal relationships, and live in the “real world.” Children learn social ques from their peers. They learn the difference between mean and nice, how to read body language, how to avoid confrontations, and what to do around different personality types. Online learning does not provide a place to do that.

A good way to get around this is to sign up with a homeschool group. The group does extracurricular activities much like a school would, but it consists of people who homeschool their children. Parents can support one another and talk about their online schooling experiences, and children get a chance to make friends with other people their age. Most cities have homeschooling groups, and you can find them on social media or through local schools.

PRO: Minimal Anxiety Triggers

Since the house is a controlled environment, your child will have a limited number of anxiety triggers to deal with. This reduces the frequency and severity of anxiety attacks and keeps the child calm as a whole. If you work with an anxiety therapist like one of the ones at Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers in Michigan, you can learn exactly how to set up your child’s environment to keep it anxiety-friendly.

CON: Minimal Anxiety Triggers (Again)

While it is nice to know that your child is not constantly feeling anxious, a lack of anxiety triggers isn’t always a good thing. The best way to learn how to deal with anxiety, depression and other emotions is to face them in small doses. Your child’s anxiety counselor can help your child identify and overcome triggers as they arise. Without any exposure to those triggers though, that knowledge may never be put to the test.

Whether your child goes to school online or in a traditional classroom setting, he or she needs to have a definitive way to conquer feelings of anxiety. This is where anxiety counseling comes in. Your child will learn the exact tools and techniques necessary to handle various scenarios as they arise. We have several child anxiety specialists in our Michigan counseling centers who would be happy to work with your family.

Continue to Part 2

First Day Of School Prep For Anxious Children: Child Anxiety Counseling MI

school prep

The first day of school is scary for everyone, especially children with anxiety. Anxious children often need to be familiar with their surroundings in order to feel safe and calm. Getting thrown into the first day of school is the opposite of “familiar,” but there are some things you can do to make the process easier. Here are some school prep tips for children with anxiety, courtesy of our child anxiety counseling center in Michigan.

Tour The School Ahead Of Time

Most schools will have multiple opportunities for parents and students to tour the facility before the first day. Open houses, “meet the teacher” days, enrollment, orientation, and other events provide you with a chance to take your child to school to get familiar with the rooms. Walk with your child to each of his or her classes. Find a path from each of those classes to the child’s locker, and go over that path several times. Ideally, you should make a couple visits to the school to ensure that your child remembers where the classes are, where his or her locker is, what the locker combination is, and where important parts of the school are (gym, cafeteria, etc.). You may get a few eye rolls from your child, but this prep work will make a big difference when school starts.

Get Into A School-Like Routine A Couple Weeks Before

Create a school-like schedule for your child before school actually starts. This will include a set bed time, wake up time, get ready time, etc. You should plan out meals as close to their school times as possible. If your child normally gets play time after school, you could set that up before school starts. The goal here is to get your child into a routine so the first day of school feels natural. Routines are very important for children with anxiety.

Don’t Wait Until The Last Minute To Buy School Supplies

If you wait until the last minute to buy school supplies, you may not be able to find everything you need before the first day. This means that your child will either show up to school empty-handed, or he or she will have to tell the teacher about the missing supplies. This is a lot of pressure for a child with anxiety.

Of course, some instances like this are unavoidable. If you cannot get all of your child’s school supplies in advance, contact the teacher(s) about the issue. See if there are any alternative supplies you can buy or if there will be ones available at the school. Taking this pressure off your child will once again allow him to focus on school itself.

Ask Your Child What He’s Most Nervous About – And Reassure Him Along The Way

Talk to your child before the first day of school to find out what he is most anxious about. Once you know his fears, you can work on conquering them before school starts. For instance, if your child is worried about not having any friends at school, you could try to meet some other parents during the open house or parent teacher night. You could also encourage your child to play with other kids in the neighborhood around his age so he sees familiar faces in the halls.

There is always a way to combat a child’s anxiety. You just have to find it. By working with one of our child anxiety counselors in Michigan, you can learn unique techniques to reduce your child’s anxiety symptoms. Contact Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers to learn more.

Simple Tips To Increase Happiness

Tips To Increase Your Happiness

We want to increase our happiness and improve our health, but find it hard to make the changes necessary. Citing the lack of time and the feeling it will take too much energy are a couple of the reasons we give for not making changes. The feeling that changes must be made quickly and that there must be immediate results is a common belief. It may be easier to go slower with changes to experience lasting results.

Let’s look at some of the things that make us healthier, and how we can slowly make these changes.

EXERCISE

Exercise increases happiness and improves health. Ideas for adding exercise are:

-Take the stairs

-Park farther away to add in more steps

-Join a team sport

-Ask a friend to join you on a walk

-Do something you enjoy

-Take a class

-Walk for 5 minutes today and add a minute every day

-Stretch for 3 minutes today and add a minute every day

SLEEP

Sleeping well, waking up rested and refreshed is important for mental and physical health. It is important to get at least 8 hours of sleep each night. Some ways to improve sleep are:

-Sleep in total darkness (lights from clocks, phones, televisions, night lights, hall lights can all interfere with your sleep)

-Avoid screen time with phones, tablets, computers, and television 2 hours before going to bed (start slow and keep decreasing screen time until you get to the 2 hour mark.)

-Use scents like lavender

– Start with 5 minutes of meditation and add time every night (remember meditation is a practice and it takes time to be able to not let your thoughts interfere)

-Start going to bed 5 minutes earlier and increase time every night until achieving 8 hours

-Go outside in the morning sun for 20 minutes within the first half hour after waking

SOCIAL CONNECTION

A main key to happiness is having a good social network. Spending time with friends and family who support us is important. This is important for increasing the feeling of contentment in our lives. Some ways to increase social contacts are:

-Have a meal with a friend (breakfast, lunch, dinner)

-Take a class

-Volunteer

-Help a friend with a project

-Have coffee with a friend

-Have a game night with your family

-Take a walk with your family

-Make a phone call

SUNSHINE

Sunshine is important to health. The lack of sun is a cause for Seasonal Affective Disorder (a depression that is a result of lack of sun.) Some ways to increase sun exposure are:

-Get outside as much as possible in the winter when the sun is shining

-Take a walk at lunchtime

-Participate in outside winter sports

-Check with your doctor to see if a full spectrum light would be helpful

POSITIVE THINKING

Thoughts can impair our happiness. Negative thoughts can take over. Ways to make our thoughts more positive:

-Recognize negative thought patterns

-Become aware of negative thoughts when they are happening (this takes practice)

-Start a Gratitude Journal

-Volunteer

-Do random acts of kindness

Simply changing your habits slowly can help us have a happier life. Start today!

If you or someone you know could benefit from help in this area and would like to talk confidentially to someone, Perspectives of Troy Counseling Centers can help. Call us at 248-244-8644.

Avoiding Panic Attacks At Work (Part 2): Michigan Anxiety Treatment

work anxiety

Continued from Part 1

Work Un-Stressful Hours, If Possible

You may not have the luxury of picking your work schedule, but if you do, try to work times that are going to keep your stress levels low. Of course, this may impact your pay if you work in a commission-based job. If you are an hourly or salaried employee though, a change in hours will be incredibly beneficial for you.

Get A Stress Ball Or Similar Device

When you feel your anxiety levels start to rise, you may feel comfort in rolling a stress ball through your fingers or twirling a pen. Try not to use tactics like biting your nails or picking at your skin because those will create an unprofessional appearance. If you work at a desk, your clients may not notice you popping the cap of a pen off and on underneath the desk. Everyone responds differently to coping mechanisms, so you will have to figure out what works best for you.

Stay Organized

This applies to your workspace and your time management throughout the day. Chaos and clutter are breeding grounds for anxiety. By organizing your office and your work schedule, you will improve your ability to fight anxiety and reduce your stress levels. At the end of each work day, take a minute to clean up. Straighten the items on your desk, clear out old containers from your locker, and create a peaceful environment to work in. When you come in the next day, you will already be starting off with a positive attitude.

Get A Good Night’s Sleep

Being well-rested will help you control your anxiety symptoms at all times, not just while you’re at work. As you sleep, your brain sorts out all the stressful and puzzling situations from the previous day. That’s why people say “I’ll sleep on it” when they need to make an important decision. If you aren’t getting enough sleep, your brain will not be able to handle the next day’s stress well. This will continue to pile up until you feel overwhelmed and full of panic. The extra sleep will also give you more energy throughout the day so you can be more productive and more alert at work. The benefits are endless.

For more information about anxiety treatment in Michigan, contact Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers today.

Avoiding Panic Attacks At Work (Part 1): Michigan Anxiety Treatment

anxiety at work

Anxiety disorders can make a normal day at work feel like a nightmare at times, especially if you’re in a position where you constantly encounter other people. Unfortunately, you need to make a living, and that may put you in uncomfortable positions from time to time. Treating your anxiety through anxiety therapy is the best way to learn how to deal with your symptoms in the workplace, but there are some general steps you can take to make your experience better. Here are some tips for avoiding panic attacks at work.

Talk To Your Employer About Your Anxiety

Before we can discuss ways to avoid panic attacks at work, we need to emphasize the importance of talking to your employer about your condition. This is particularly crucial if you have a severe anxiety disorder that may require medical accommodations. Many of our anxiety treatment patients at our counseling centers in Michigan say that they don’t want to talk to their managers about their anxiety for fear of losing their job. However, most employers are incredibly sympathetic and accommodating, as long as you are willing to help them help you.

Let your boss know what type of anxiety you have, what may trigger it, and what you are doing to treat it so it does not come across as an excuse not to work. That way, if you follow the other suggestions below, your management team will already be aware of your needs.

Understand Your Anxiety Triggers

Anxiety often comes with triggers that you can learn to deal with or avoid. Large crowds of people, overwhelming amounts of information, small spaces, and public speaking are just some potential anxiety triggers. Your anxiety counselor will help you figure out what those triggers are and how to handle them during your therapy sessions, but you may discover others while you are at work. Once you know what sparks your anxiety symptoms, you can either avoid those scenarios entirely or find ways to cope with them (Example: declutter a small office cubicle to make it feel more spacious).

Find Ways To Step Away From Stress

You may not always be able to take a break from a stressful situation, but do what you can to collect your thoughts. For instance, if you work in retail, you may excuse yourself to the stock room for a moment to clear your head, breathe, and prepare for whatever you are dealing with on the sales floor. If you are working with a customer, you will probably need to wait until after the transaction is complete to take your break. When all else fails, say you need to use the restroom and use that time to control your anxiety symptoms.

Continue to Part 2

Finding A Job When You Have Anxiety: MI Anxiety Treatment

MI anxiety treatment

Having anxiety can make everyday tasks quite challenging, especially when it comes to social settings. With that in mind, you still have bills to pay, which means you’re probably going to look for a job at some point in your life. These tips from our Michigan anxiety treatment center are designed to help you find a job when you have anxiety so you can lead a normal, productive life.

Understand Your Anxiety Triggers (And Find A Job That Avoids Them)

In order to set yourself up for success, you need to understand the triggers of your anxiety symptoms. These may be issues you face on a daily basis, or they may be events that only happen every once and a while. In any case, you should look for work that has a low amount of anxiety triggers. For example, if you have claustrophobia and are bothered by small spaces, you wouldn’t do well in a cubicle environment. If you have difficulty interacting with large crowds, you probably won’t do well in fast-paced retail or food positions. Find a job that will keep your stress and anxiety to a minimum, and you’ll have a much easier time getting through the day.

Apply Online When Possible

If your anxiety symptoms normally keep you at home a lot, make the most of the time you have. The majority of employers now have online portals for job applications, so you can apply just about anywhere right from home. You will still need to visit a physical location for an interview, but this saves you from going around door-to-door for apps.

Work With A Therapist To Reduce Anxiety Symptoms

Anxiety therapy is one of our specialties here at Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers in Metro Detroit, MI. We have several counselors and therapists on staff who specialize in depression and anxiety treatment. With the help of a therapist, you can gain a better understanding of the root causes of your anxiety and how to control your symptoms. Most of our patients see tremendous turnarounds in their lives because of the tools and techniques they learn in their therapy sessions. Your counselor will work with you directly to give you the best shot at a great career.

Prepare Yourself For The Interview – You’ve Got This!

If you get a call or email about a job interview, take some steps to prepare yourself ahead of time. Use self-esteem boosting techniques to get your mind excited before the big day. If you think your anxiety is going to cause you to run late, schedule enough time to get to the interview early. Set out your clothes, beauty products, food, or anything else you need the night before so you are ready to go when the time comes. Keep your stress levels as low as possible, and treat this just like any other one-on-one conversation you may have. Maintain a positive outlook the whole way through, and nothing will stand in the way of landing a job with anxiety.

MI Anxiety Treatment: Helping A Spouse With Anxiety – Part 2

marriage anxiety

Continued from Part 1

Avoid Your Spouse’s Anxiety Triggers

In the first part of this anxiety therapy guide for married couples, we discussed ways you can adjust your behaviors to accommodate your spouse’s anxiety. This concept falls in line with that. If your spouse has specific anxiety triggers, like going to a place with large crowds or being around fireworks, do what you can do avoid those. Your spouse may be asked to face his or her triggers during his or her anxiety therapy, but that is something that the therapist will plan out. The goal would be to gradually desensitize your spouse to the trigger so it is not a trigger any longer. If that is in fact the plan, you will need to follow the therapist’s directions to determine how to work around your spouse’s triggers.

Be As Understanding As Possible

There will be times that you feel frustrated dealing with your spouse’s anxiety. This is perfectly normal and expected in a stressful situation. Do all you can to put your frustrations aside, especially when your spouse is going through an anxiety attack. In many cases, the spouse will apologize afterward for acting a certain way or responding a certain way. Then you can talk about ways to avoid similar conflicts in the future. Remember that your spouse is just as frustrated as you because of his or her anxiety symptoms, but together, you can find ways to make the environment better for both of you.

Keep Household Stress To A Minimum

Stress will not only make your spouse’s anxiety symptoms worse, but it will also make you more agitated by the anxiety. In other words, having stress in your life will make the situation worse on both sides. Do what you can do minimize the stress in the household. Speak openly and honestly with one another. Do not live above your means. Work through difficult situations together, and be aware of when your spouse has a stressful day.

In addition to anxiety therapy, you and your spouse could use couples counseling to build your communication skills and improve your interactions with one another. Perspectives Of Troy Counseling Centers offers a wide range of counseling programs in Michigan, and we would love to see your marriage thrive. Give us a call at (248) 244-8644 to schedule an appointment, and you can be on your way to the relaxing, anxiety-free life you both deserve.

MI Anxiety Treatment: Helping A Spouse With Anxiety – Part 1

spouse anxiety

Living with anxiety is a challenge, not just for the person experiencing the anxiety but also for those who must make adjustments for it. If you are married to a person with anxiety, there are things you can do to make the anxiety less intense and ease the stress throughout your marriage. Use the tips below to help your spouse get through his or her anxious moments so you can enjoy a better quality of life.

Understand What Causes Your Spouse’s Anxiety

Anxiety can be triggered by a wide range of experiences and emotions. Some people feel anxious in crowded areas or in rooms with people they do not know. Others experience anxiety when they feel pain or get sick because they believe their health risks are worse than they actually are. Anxiety can also be brought on by memories of traumatic experiences, or sometimes it can come out of nowhere. Every person is completely unique.

Try to understand what causes your spouse’s anxiety. You may be able to do that through simple observation or by talking to your spouse about his or her feelings. This conversation is best completed when the spouse is not feeling anxious because it can be difficult to relay emotions in the midst of a panic attack. If your spouse is working with an anxiety therapist, you could ask if you could attend a session every once and a while to get a better understanding of what your spouse is going through. This insight will help you prepare for when an anxiety attack may happen so you are not caught off guard by it.

Ask Your Spouse About Adjustments You Can Make

Your spouse knows his or her anxiety better than anyone. Talk to your spouse about adjustments you can make to reduce his or her symptoms. For instance, if you speak in a rapid manner, the speed of your voice and thoughts as a whole may make your spouse feel anxious. Slowing down your speech or reducing the volume of your speaking voice will help keep the environment as calm as possible. Make any adjustments you can, within reason, to help your spouse with his or her anxiety.

You may also ask your spouse how you should respond during a panic attack. Some people react well to having someone around to keep their mind off the anxiety. Others prefer to sit in silence and work through their anxiety on their own. You may be able to help in a physical way, like rubbing your spouse’s back or playing with his or her hair. Not everyone likes to be touched during a panic attack though. Once again, it is a matter of finding what works for your spouse and responding to his or her specific needs.

Continue to Part 2