How do you deal with anxiety? For most of my life, I kept it all in my heart, trying to “get ahead of it” somehow with worry and trying to think about every possible thing that could happen. I was taught this from little on. The act of worrying was thought to be cute from some of the adults in my little girl world so they heaped adult concerns about money and addiction on me as if I was a middle aged woman who could handle it. If I showed the attitude that God was in control, I’d be belittled, called names, and told I must not care.
So, I’ve had to learn the proper way to deal with anxiety. My little girl instincts, that God was in control, were right, as it turned out. He is. And what does that mean?
He tells us in 2 Timothy 1:7:
“for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”
I’ve learned that worry and anxiety are tools of the enemy. God does not want us filled with fear. He tells us over and over to not be afraid in the Bible. One of the projects we worked on in my Getting Closer to God With Mixed Media Art online course focuses solely on fear and shows a different way to deal with them.
This is important. Because we can remind ourselves to trust God, who is in control of everything, or we can live recklessly, thinking that if we worry or plan enough we can control every thing in our life.
We can’t. If we could, it would be our plan, and it isn’t. It’s God’s plan, and that is a good thing.
Artists, especially, are prone to anxiety in my observation. People think it is because we are putting our work out there, and I don’t think that is the entire reason. I think it is because most of what we do as artists is against our nature. We’re not worrying when we are in our cozy little happy place, painting away the day. We are not filled with anxiety in the process of creating art. It is when we get out in the world that our sensitive natures are bombarded by a multitude of things that cause us to question the world, which shows us again and again that we don’t always have the answers we desire.
Here’s a bit more on what I do when I feel anxious.