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  • Writer's pictureBrittany Stewart

Overcoming Anxiety at Work: Worst Case vs Best Case Scenarios

Updated: May 12

Have you ever found yourself grappling with anxiety, especially in the workplace? As a seasoned Senior QA professional, I've experienced my fair share of moments that can trigger panic or anxiety attacks. In this blog post, I want to share my journey of dealing with anxiety and explore a powerful mental approach that has helped me overcome my daily anxiety struggles.

My Anxiety Journey

I have been battling with anxiety for a long time now. Recently, I went through a 4-6 week period of high anxiety. As I recover from the disruption, I've intentionally noted things I've been experiencing.

The Power of Worst Case vs Best Case Scenarios

Recently I was freaking out about my 6-year-old son's stutter. He's been doing well with it for several years now, but for some reason, I started to worry more than usual on that day. I decided to research speech pathologists around the area. I found a good recommendation but stopped myself; I felt uncertain about what to do next and started worrying about taking the first step. I contacted my closest friend for a second opinion. Her response to my struggle in the moment results in a eureka moment. She said:

"The worst case is that they provide a treatment program for him and give us exercises to support him from home daily, and the best case is they say, 'Ma'am, please go home.' In other words - your son is fine."

This simple text message got me thinking about how simple it was to break my anxious train of thought.

I've faced this situation before. Three years ago, I found myself in a meeting with Stacy Kirk at the prestigious 20th South building. Feeling overwhelmed, I was in tears over my struggles to launch and sustain our family's interior decorating business. Stacy, with her calm and composed demeanor, asked me a simple yet profound question: "What's the worst that could happen?" I was speechless, unable to articulate a response. She patiently sat with me, guiding me through the worst and best-case scenarios for my business. Fast forward to today, and I've successfully launched the company, assisting local and international business owners with their graphic and interior design projects. This experience, along with my husband's logical approach to decision-making, has led me to believe that adopting a similar mindset could help me manage my daily anxiety attacks.

I plan to implement these strategies over the next two weeks to gauge their impact on my stress and anxiety levels.

Strategies to Manage Anxiety

1) Establish a Consistent Sleep Routine:

I go to bed by 9:30 pm most nights. Sometimes, I fall asleep earlier while doing my son's bedtime routine. I also keep my devices out of the room at night to prevent mindless scrolling rather than sleeping.

2) Start the Day Early

I set my alarm for 5:00 am. I've found it helpful to use my Apple watch to wake me up calmly rather than with a loud blaring ringtone alarm.

3) Embrace the Power of Questions: 

What's the worst-case scenario?

What's the best-case scenario?

Is the worst-case scenario that bad? If it's not, proceed to the following action.

I am empowered to bring a positive change to my professional and personal life by adopting effective strategies to manage anxiety in all aspects of my journey. I hope you find it helpful, too. 

Thank you for reading! 

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