How to deal with anxiety and panic at work

Journalist Margaret Gray shares her take on The Anxiety Cure, by Klaus Bernhardt, an expert psychotherapist helping thousands live free from anxiety and panic

How to deal with anxiety at work

4.     Visualise your body as powerful

Most of those who suffer from anxiety and panic in the workplace describe a sensation of tightness in the chest come over them when daily tasks become stressful. “Tightness in your chest is often described as a belt that someone has placed around your chest and pulled tight. Here, you can help yourself with the image that you have mechanical ribs of steel that you can use to expand your ribcage with the press of a button, meaning you can burst the belt whenever you feel like it, and you will be able to spread your lungs freely and with ease.”

5.     Think positively

Constantly thinking about your anxiety or visualising negative scenarios paves the way for more fear and panic. Klaus Bernhardt explains that “repeated negative thinking builds the neurobiological foundation that allows panic attacks to happen in the first place. Anyone who thinks negatively for long enough is automatically laying down an information superhighway in their brain that travels directly toward negative feelings and anxiety.” The more you visualise working calmly, happily, and productively in your place of work, the more likely you are to make this a reality.

6.     Love it, leave it, or change it

Anxiety often stems from a reluctance to change a situation which we know isn’t right for us. Bernhardt knows that the road to recovery starts by “being honest with ourselves… Have we been following a dream that proved itself a nightmare many years ago, one that we cannot admit to ourselves?  Perhaps that dream job has become a daily disappointment. Do we really have to face a job we hate every single day, just because it is a quick commute, or because we worked so hard to land it in the first place?”

Thousands of Bernhardt’s patients have found personal and professional success using these simple methods. More approaches to curing workplace anxiety can be found in his book, The Anxiety Cure.

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