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SOS - Anxiety and Positive Self-awareness


Do you experience anxiety? That may sound like a foolish question, with the multiple challenges of our current day. Yes, many of us struggle to defeat anxiety inside the ring or circle of life.

There is a better question. How do you thrive when your anxieties threaten your way of living? Some of us need professional help and medication. Others may find relief through self-care remedies that include exercise and journaling.

This morning, I led a workshop about anxiety and positive self-awareness. The workshop's content is geared toward the challenges that medical school students encounter with learning the pre-clinical sciences and maintaining positive self-care practices. Despite some technical glitches for the online audience, today’s interactive lecture was well received.

The advising appointments and emails that followed today's talk confirmed my observations. One student sent an email and expressed, "this was the best lecture I have ever attended on anxiety and positive self-awareness." An advisee said, "thank you for today. I needed that."

Attending classes remotely and in person will influence an increase in stressors for your students.

During today’s interactive hybrid lecture, I shared research with the students and incorporated personal stories to provide practical strategies for managing anxiety and increasing positive self-awareness. We covered affirmations, yoga, prayer, exercise, writing, meditation, and visualizing success.

I know that my life’s purpose includes connecting with students to facilitate meaningful teaching experiences. Through personal development, I have learned to interpret nervous emotions before class as the necessary excitement to do my best work when I turn on my computer’s camera or step one foot inside the lecture hall.

Anxiety has no choice but to move out of the way when I get in that professional zone of influence. In what aspect of your work, does that happen for you? If you can't answer that question, it may be time to explore the job market.

On the personal side...

I am an excellent husband and father, but I often worry about how my professional ambitions interfere with being present at home. My work schedule has been insane this week with teaching, advising, and co-curricular programming responsibilities. Plus, I am writing another book and working on more samples to add to my instructional design portfolio.

Do you appreciate the weekends? I am grateful for weekends that allow me to have more time with family and opportunities to enjoy the outdoors.

Before you start your weekend, here are three remedies for limiting anxiety’s debilitating grip on your life and increasing your self-esteem.

1. Exercise

Two to three exercise sessions for 30 minutes can produce wonders for your body’s ability to manage stress. It will also help your body look and feel better. Making consistent time to work out builds your immune system and creates additional neurological pathways to support creativity and problem-solving. Get moving!

2. Write

Keeping a journal is an invaluable resource to help you deal with anxiety. The book I mentioned last week, Stillness is the Key by Ryan Holiday, provides you with multiple reasons for keeping a daily writing habit. If you cannot journal every day, do it once a week and receive the benefits of reflection. Write for five minutes today!

3. Plan

The more you can develop a structured schedule of how you want to use your time, the easier it can become to handle anxiety and make time for yourself. Understand that your week will not be perfect, and obstacles will arise, but you can figure out how to circumvent the roadblocks with a plan in motion. Plan your week before Monday!

These three approaches to addressing anxiety and supporting positive self-awareness are only a fraction of what I shared with my students in this morning’s lecture.

You can see some additional examples at this link.

We only get one body in this life, and figuring out how to suffocate anxiety and low self-esteem can breathe life into your daily activities.

For a sample eLearning course that discusses anxiety and positive self-awareness, check out the example in my instructional design portfolio.

For your male students of color interested in learning more about physical, mental, and spiritual health strategies to navigate life, pick up my book, Dear Brother: 82 Powerful Poems to Guide Your Journey to Healthy Black Masculinity.


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