Culture - High School - Jr. High - Preteen -

“Concentrate on Your Nostrils” - And Other Advice for Processing Anxiety in the New Normal —

By CIY Staff

Created on 06/18/2021

Things are starting to open back up, churches are meeting in person, summer camps and conferences are happening. Finally! We're entering the "New Normal."

But you're definitely not alone if this return is causing you some anxiety. How can we process and deal with this anxiety? We asked our friend Mandy Cothern-Webb, PHD, to give us some helpful tips on this topic.


We highly recommend you watch the whole video, but here are some quick helpful notes from the interview:

1. Focus on what you can control, not on what you can't

We've been inundated with information, news, and situations that are way outside our control. These kinds of things outside our control can cause us to experience anxiety. But what can we control? Our presence. Our bodies. Our choices. Let's use those powers for our own well-being.

2. Concentrate on your body, breathing, and senses

One of the things you can almost always control is your body. Simple tricks can help get us out of ruminating in our head, and into the present moment. Try tapping your fingers from each hand together rhythmically. Can you concentrate on your nostrils as you breathe to figure out which one is letting in more air? You can also focus on the actual information being brought in through your senses of smell, taste, hearing. These things help calm us down and make us more present.

3. Be intentional about what you're consuming

Study after study shows that social media is not a good substitute for physical presence and relationship. The news is not a good substitute for scripture. Scrolling your feeds doesn't feed your soul. Ask yourself, what am I consuming? How much am I consuming? Am I feeding my spiritual life with God's truth and gospel Good News?