How to Make Anxiety Your Best Asset

Walking into a room, chin up, form-fitting clothes, flouncy hair, and a big smile, no one would ever suspect I deal with occasional anxiety on first impression. But anxiety isn’t just for the shy or awkward. In fact, I bet your boss, one of your role models, best friends, or even you have experienced it. Anxiety gets a bad wrap. And, it’s not always the most pleasant feeling. But what if you could wake up one morning and say, “I am successful and happy because of my anxiety!”?

How to Make Anxiety Your Best Asset featured

As a born-worrier, I’ve dealt with occasional anxiety through most of my life, even before I knew what it was. Since a young age I experienced sleepless nights where revved nerves made me feel wide awake. I felt guilt over little things I said or did. And I over analyzed other people’s behaviors, possible outcomes, and tended to easily blame myself for disappointments.

It wasn’t until my first panic attack during my senior year of college that I heard the term “anxiety.” I thought, “there’s a word to describe the discomfort I feel?” If there’s a label, there had to be enough other people experiencing the same emotions. I wasn’t alone.

Whether it’s genetic, circumstantial, or a result of trauma, you should never feel shame about anxiety. However, it’s extremely important to learn how to identify and process anxiety in productive ways. When gone unattended, it can hurt out relationships, careers, and self-esteem.

If you know me, you know I don’t settle. I have been on a mission to turn my anxiety into my best asset. I am learning how to take my anxious personality traits and make them my greatest strengths to propel me into success and fulfillment. But I don’t want to be the only one reaping these benefits. So today I’m breaking down how to turn the 6 most common anxiety personality traits into your biggest strengths based on the book From Panic to Power by Lucinda Bassett.

1. Perfectionism to high standards

Needing everything to be perfect all the time is confining, controlling, and stressful. So let’s ditch it, girlfriend! Release perfection and swap it for high standards. You can still appreciate a clean home, pressed dress, beautiful hair, and healthy lifestyle without feeling so attached to them. Having high standards is empowering and gives you flexibility.

2. Inner nervousness to high vitality

Our thoughts create energy inside our body. If we don’t know how to respond to this energy it can be overwhleming. Did you know the body doesn’t know the difference between excitement and fear? Keeping this energy locked up inside is useless and potentially petrifying. But, if we can turn it outward, it can be powerful and productive. Next time you feel angst over public speaking, meeting a deadline, flying, or confrontation, realize that same energy can be used to give you excitement, motivation, and strength to face fears, meet goals, and try new things.

3. Guilt feelings to taking action

Whether it’s slipping up on healthy eating, missing a workout, arguing with a loved one, or saying something “silly” in a work meeting, how many times have you felt guilty over your shortcomings?  Feelings of guilt are unproductive and can lead to low self-worth.  Instead, use these moments to simply recognize your mistakes and motivate change.

4. Emotional sensitivity to knowing yourself

Do you deal with indigestion? Cry easily? Panic during scary movies? Have sensitivity to caffeine? Lucky you, you have a very strong mind-body connection! Being sensitive can make you feel vulnerable. However, it can also create a strong self-awareness that allows you to grow, create boundaries, and choose the activities, careers, and relationships that actually bring you joy.

5. Indecisiveness to allowing mistakes 

There are no right or wrong decisions. However, we can become indecisive when we lack the self-confidence to take risks and stay committed. The road to success is never perfect, it’s filled with mistakes. Let go of your fear of failure, it doesn’t serve you. Instead, realize your inner #bossbabe – you can do anything you set your mind to, no matter how many times you screw up!

6. Obsessive worrying to goal setting 

I have a very creative and analytical mind, to say the least. I can come up with lots of ways I could completely “screw up” my life. However, when I decided to use this creativity to come up with hundreds of more ways my life could completely flourish, I was able to create real goals and meet them. 

Turn your anxiety into your best asset

Do you experience anxiety? How do you deal with it? I want to hear all your tips in the comments below 🙂

Health and happiness,

Emily

Hi and welcome to Life in Spandex! I'm Emily, a personal trainer who believes there should be no secrets standing in your way to getting fit. I am sharing my knowledge here on this blog in order to help you reach your goals. Fitness should be fun, eating healthy should taste good, and feeling your absolute best is the ultimate goal. Let's get fit together!
17 comments
  1. Excellent! Taking something we feel is a weakness about ourselves and turning it into a strength is amazing. I love the connections you shared. Thank you!

    1. I love that you love it! 😍🤗 you’re so welcome

  2. Anxiety is the biggest robber of peace & serenity, it holds us in a place of ransomed control, to living our best lives.

    I have always given my patients the following strategy;
    * anxiety is fear,
    * fear of the known or unknown,
    * a fear faced head on…
    * is no longer a fear!

    Anxiety no longer has control to rob you of your peace & serenity because the fear is now a conquered foe!
    You have taken back control!

    You are most welcome to drop by for a cup of inspiration,
    Jennifer

  3. Hi Emily! Thank you so much for posting this. It was VERY motivating and inspiring to read. I am 100 percent an anxious person and to learn about ways to handle it and turn it into something positive was just what I needed. You are the best!

    1. This honestly brought tears to my eyes. This isn’t an easy topic to open up about. But your response makes it all worth it!! 😘😘

  4. This is a great way to turn around some of those negative thoughts and behaviors we can all fall into.

    1. Thank you Deborah! Hope it helps 🤗

  5. LOVE this post. I wrote a post about high-functioning anxiety, and it’s been life changing to be able to turn my weakness into a strength!

    1. I’m so happy to hear that! It’s so empowering to know that we don’t have to settle for our current tendencies. You can actually rewire your brain!

  6. Amazing post and a wonderful way to help others.

    1. Thank you Natasha!! Healthy thoughts are important too

  7. Hi Honey, Mom here….. I particularly liked # 5, From Indecisiveness to Allowing Mistakes. It’s so freeing!!
    And relating to # 1 about Perfectionism, I have a new saying…. Excellence, not perfection. Living a life of excellence means doing our best, doing our part. That’s achievable. In nature there is no perfection, only excellence.
    Love, love you. Thanks for bringing such meaning and depth to so many lives, including mine. Xxx

    1. Aw thank you mommy!! Love that saying too. But love you more 😘💕😜

  8. Love how positive this article is – anxiety is always such a negative topic!

    1. Thank you Erica!! But it doesn’t have to be!

  9. I love this! I too had no idea what anxiety was till college (thank goodness for phycology classes). Its definitely a benefit in a curse in so many ways.

    1. Totally! But I always believe I to turning our “weaknesses” into strengths 🤗

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