In Part 1 – Identifying patterns in anxiety, we talked about what anxiety is, how it presents itself, and how you can use Reveal Stories to help identify signs and patterns of anxiety.

In Part 2, we will discuss how you and your trusted care team can use Reveal Stories to help address anxiety and get back to feeling good again.

 

Why should I identify signs and patterns of anxiety?

Identifying patterns can help you and your trusted care team predict when or where anxiety is likely to occur. When you have detailed information about what anxiety looks like, where and when it happens, and any hints or cues that it might be escalating, it becomes much easier to get ahead of the anxiety and calm down before the situation escalates.

Luckily, Reveal Stories makes it easy for you and your team to keep a record of these notes. It is important to remember that the signs of anxiety might be different at home than they are at school or elsewhere; that’s why it is important for the whole team to get on board. The app also makes it easy to share these insights with your whole team and to share strategies around what works to reduce anxiety.

How can I use Reveal Stories to share strategies?

Whenever anxiety happens, people have different strategies to help feel better again. In Part 1, we talked about how some of these strategies can actually be harmful to the person with anxiety or to those around them. In these cases, different strategies need to be developed and tested to see if they work.

Reveal Stories is a valuable tool to keep track of the strategies used to help address anxiety in the moment. Do you use deep breathing? Do you guide your student through some vigorous exercise? How about letting your kiddo crush a juice box or pop some bubble wrap? Use the “Quick Note” option to make a note of the strategy you use; make sure to describe what was happening before, and the effect of this strategy. You can also use the “Behavior” option to show what happens to a behavior as a result of using a particular strategy. By recording this information using Reveal Stories, the rest of your trusted care team can see exactly what you did and how successful it was.

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Want some resources for in-the-moment strategies?

  1. Journal of Cognitive Behavior Therapy – Aerobic Exercise and Anxiety
  2. Anxiety BC – Deep breathing

Can I use Reveal Stories to get ahead of the anxiety?

Reveal Stories is great to keep a record of how you address anxiety in the moment. But what about getting ahead of the anxiety and addressing it before it escalates?

Because you have identified patterns and gained a deeper understanding of the things that can cause anxiety, you can teach the person you support how to recognize anxiety for themselves and take their own steps to overcome it. It is important to teach these skills when the person you support is calm and ready to learn. Double check Reveal Stories to help you recognize where and when that happens; is your student more receptive after gym class? Does your kiddo find it easier to learn if they have access to a sensory toy? Do you prefer a quiet room or a busy coffee shop to learn something new?

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Want to learn how to teach the skills to overcome anxiety?

  1. Tamar Chansky – Systemic Desensitization
  2. Helping children with ASD face their fears
  3. Mind and Body Therapies: A Systematic Review

Important things to remember

While Reveal Stories can help you and your trusted team gain a better understanding of anxiety, it is important to remember that it will take time. Patterns will begin to emerge when you have recorded enough information – this can sometimes take a few weeks!

Fortunately, when you invite your team to collaborate with you, this task becomes much easier. Not only can you rely on your team to help you record valuable information, you can also rely on their help to identify patterns and share strategies to help address anxiety.