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  • Writer's pictureBrittany Stewart

Overcoming Anxiety at Work: Worst Case vs Best Case Scenarios

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. Being a Senior QA professional has many moments that can trigger panic or anxiety attacks if you are as prone to them as I am.

I recently 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.

If you have, then this blog post is for you.

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 been here before. About three years ago, I remember meeting with Stacy Kirk at one of the most prestigious buildings on the island - 20th South. We had the opportunity to have a one-on-one. I remember crying about being unable to launch and carry on the family interior decorating business. In her calm, cool manner, Stacy asked me, "What's the worst that could happen?". I couldn't think of an answer, and she sat with me and guided me through this business's worst and best-case scenarios. Fast forward to now - I launched the company and supported local and international business owners on their graphic and interior design projects. Suffice it to say that that worst case was not so bad.

Along with that of my husband, who always examines these scenarios logically before any decision, these two specific life experiences have made me start to wonder if this same mindset can help to support me with the daily anxiety attacks I face.

I'll be trying these things over the next two weeks to see if and how they improve 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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