Self-Help Information: Tips for Alleviating Anxiety
1. Give yourself permission to be anxious instead of thinking
you always need to be in control of the situation. (“Fighting”
your feelings sometimes just increases them.)
for the future rather than worry about it.
3. Do something about the situation rather than “stew” about it.
4. Appropriately share your feelings instead of keeping them
stuffed inside and letting them intensify.
5. Concentrate on doing one thing at a time and avoid the
6. Realistically decide what you can do in the time you have and
then give yourself an extra hour or two.
7. Look for enjoyment in the “doing” of something rather than
focusing so much on the end result.
8. Live more in the present day and reduce anticipating what
will happen tomorrow or next week.
9. Think in terms of hoping for rather than expecting certain
things to happen.
10. Do things because you want to rather than to win the
approval of others.
11. Speak, eat, drive and move at a slower and more relaxed
12. Use abdominal breathing when anxious feelings occur.
13. Take care of your body by eating properly, exercising
regularly and getting enough rest.
14. Engage in physical activities which involve large muscle
movement when feeling anxious.
15. Try perceiving stressful events as beneficial or natural
rather than negative.
16. Find friends who are calm rather than anxious or
17. Prepare for morning the night before.
18. Arrive at your class, work, or appointment 10-15 minutes
19. Become more flexible and realize that some things are not
worth doing perfectly.
20. Cheer for rather than compete with others.
21. Get away from the stressful situation occasionally and get a
change of scenery.
22. Get involved with other people in worthwhile endeavors.
23. Realize that most decisions are not “right” nor “wrong” but
just lead to different experiences which have advantages and
24. Visualize yourself performing successfully before you
25. Smile, even if you do not feel like it.
26. Use good thought control by reminding yourself of these
a.) Five years from now, who will care.
b.) I can do what I can do and that is all.
c.) I’m not going to let my body get involved in this.
d.) I’ll compare myself with myself rather than others.
e.) I can learn from the experience regardless of how I
f.) I’m not going to waste my energy on that issue.
g.) Getting upset will not help me deal with the situation.
h.) Things are usually not as bad as I anticipate them to
27. Obtain professional help, and possible medication, if your
anxiety persists and does not seem related to any changing
circumstances or stressful situations in your life.
28. Recognize that this list can make you more anxious if you
try to implement all suggestions at once. Pick those items which
are most relevant to you and only focus on one or two at a time.
Need Additional Help?
Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine
Counseling and Wellness Services offer free individual
counseling for these and related issues for veterinary students
(WSU Veterinary Students ONLY). For more information or to
schedule an appointment call or e-mail:
Donna J. Scott, PhD
The information contained in these self help
documents is not to be used as a substitute for professional
care. Neither the authors, Washington State University nor the
College of Veterinary Medicine assume liability for injury
incurred by following the information presented in these