Morning Anxiety: What to do when you wake up in a panic.

People with anxiety often share similar symptoms and familiar triggers, but it’s not the same for any two people. While many have worse anxiety at night, others may wake up with the symptoms. Either way, this can make it hard to get ready for your day, so here’s some information to help you lessen your morning anxiety.

Causes of Morning Anxiety

Feeling anxious in the morning can be a physical effect that is simply worse for you because you have anxiety, or it may be closely linked to your stress levels. One possibility to consider is your body produces more of the stress hormone, cortisol, upon waking, which can make you feel anxious. If you already have an anxiety disorder, it might feel a lot worse for you than someone without anxiety. Your body might also be reacting to a higher blood pressure when you wake up, since these levels drop when you’re relaxed and sleeping.

Starting a New Morning Routine

To get a handle on your morning anxiety, start by creating a morning routine. This should be something you do every morning or as often as possible, where you know what is expected of you right after your alarm goes off. This can reduce your stress by being fully prepared as soon as you wake up. You know the order of events, from showering and brushing your teeth, to writing in your journal, yoga stretches or deep breathing exercises in the morning. Choose relaxing activities you can do before it’s time to get the kids up, get ready for work or whatever the day holds for you.

Get Ready Before Bed

Another way to reduce morning anxiety is by preparing the night before. Having both a nighttime and morning routine can do wonders for people who already have a lot of anxiousness and stress. Work on your to-do list and schedule the night before. Send any important emails or make phone calls ? Preferably before 7:30PM. Get your clothes ready and make lunches for the following day. All of this can reduce the stress of waking up in the morning, which can then lower your anxiety.

Give Yourself Time to Wake Up

If you find that your anxiety is worse on mornings when you hop out of bed in a rush, that’s probably the biggest culprit. You may need time to wake up without feeling stressed immediately. Set your alarm 15–20 minutes earlier than when you need to get up so that you have a little extra time to hit snooze if you need to. Once you do get up, make sure you have some free time before you have to start getting ready.

Next Steps

Like any new habit, consistency is key. Pick one or two things you can do to make your life easier and commit to them for at least three months. If you feel like your anxiety is becoming debilitating and out of control, sign up for a free discovery call. Together we can talk more about your specific needs and create a plan to get you moving in a more peaceful and calm direction.

Wishing you well,

Dr. Kat


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