10 Top Tricks from Therapists on How to Deal with Anxiety

Create a healthy routine

An easy way for you to learn how to deal with anxiety is to create a healthy routine. “Anxiety feeds on poor sleep, junk food, alcohol, and drugs, and inactivity,” Burton says. The fact that you feel better when you’re taking care of yourself isn’t news but these daily habits can be the first thing to go during a period of intense anxiety. So instead of worrying about how you’ve let the gym slip or whether your insomnia will be bad tonight, choose just one habit to focus on maintaining for one week. Be specific and write your goal down. Examples could be: No electronics after 10 p.m, eating three servings of vegetables per day, or taking a 20-minute walk three times per week. “As the habits you choose become more ingrained, you can add more to the list,” Burton says. “Getting your habits under control will improve your physical well-being and reduce your anxiety by improving your sense of self-efficacy—that feeling of being able to control your own life when situations around you feel stressful.”

See anxiety as a feature, not a flaw

Anxiety can be gut-wrenchingly painful, no doubt about it. But it does have some upsides you can harness to help you, Nanavati says. Instead of being paralyzed by your worries, see them as a call to action for how to deal with anxiety. “A growth mindset is one that believes any event or circumstance is an opportunity for growth and that anyone can achieve anything with the right amount of effort,” he says. Instead of blaming your circumstances or question your abilities, let your anxiety motivate you to change the things that are worrying you.

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