Dealing with anxious attachment is probably one of the most difficult challenges you have to manage, especially if you have an intimate relationship with someone. People with this issue tend to be worried, afraid, or unable to be on their own.
And this usually becomes apparent when you are starting to get closer to someone. You become dependent and too emotional with your connection with the person, be they your friend or partner.
How anxious attachment is developed can be traced back to childhood. It becomes a part of you, and it makes it more difficult to manage. However, it doesn’t mean that you can’t learn to control it. In fact, there are ways on how to self soothe anxious attachment.
If you’ve identified that you have an anxious attachment style when it comes to dealing with your personal relationships, read this article. We will lay down the triggers you need to look out for and the ways you can effectively control the situation.
It’s important that you know the possible triggers of your anxious attachment. That way, you can better understand how you can avoid it or control yourself whenever it renders you insecure about your relationships. All these triggers are only a few of the many you may notice.
You are attending a large celebration like a party where you are surrounded by strangers. You’d feel out of place like you don’t belong to the group.
Your friend doesn’t answer your calls and texts. It makes you feel that they’re being distant from you and that they don’t care about your feelings. This isn’t always the case.
Your partner is not replying or takes a while before replying to your messages and calls. It could also be that they’re not initiating such gestures.
Your partner or spouse is talking to someone you barely know. This makes you feel that they’ve grown bored of your company.
Someone you care about seems to be avoiding you. This makes you feel rejected and possibly reminds you of abandonments in the past.
Being in a competition can heightened stress levels. Apart from the pressure, you may also need to compete alone or with people you don’t know.
There’s a person or a thing that keeps on reminding you about the trauma that made you anxious.
These are only a few of the many triggers of anxious attachment. Typically, all the things that can make you feel uncertain can be a trigger to your anxious attachment. There are more that you may observe yourself. The most important thing is that you always listen and recognize what you feel and what causes you to feel such emotions.
Method 1: Take a Hold of Your Anger
The most common feeling you’d feel when the anxious attachment gets triggered is anger. You may feel extreme anger towards yourself for acting in such a way. But more often, you get a surge of negative emotions toward the person, even though it’s unreasonable.
This is especially the case if you also have anger-management issues. When angry, make sure to give yourself some space to cool down. Don’t let it consume you. You can go to the park to get some fresh air or you may also eat your comfort food. Anything that can help reduce the intensity of your anger is good.
Besides cooling down, communicating the cause of your anger to your friend, family or partner is also a good idea. Accumulating your thoughts and overthinking won’t help you. So, tell them what made you upset in a calm manner. Be honest as much as possible. This way, you will also get an honest response.
Method 2: Examine and Change Your Negative Thoughts
Awareness of your thought patterns is a great way to regulate your anxious attachment issues. This makes you capable of changing what you are thinking when the anxious attachment is triggered. You can do this by expecting your negative emotions and thoughts whenever you come across a thing that triggers the anxiety.
Once you know that you are about to feel anger, shame, etc., you can try writing them down in a notebook. After writing, you can proceed to ask yourself when you last felt those emotions. Examine whether you’ve opened them up with your friend or partner. If yes, recall what happened then. Did they get upset with you? If not, then it’s safe to assume you don’t have to be angry, ashamed, or whatnot.
If you can’t quickly examine your negative thoughts and feelings, you may also try changing them through words of affirmation. You can remind and uplift yourself with the following positive words:
I am valid. Everything will be okay.
I am loved and I am always worthy.
I am strong. I can overcome this challenge.
I need nothing but what I have right now.
I become a better version of myself each day.
I am proud of myself.
I am sad and it’s okay.
I can still learn a thing or two.
It’s recommended that you say these words to yourself in front of a mirror. Talking to yourself is the best thing you can do to change your thoughts into positive ones. Self-talk from time to time is healthy, too.
Method 3: Reduce Stress with Meditation
When anxious attachment kicks in, you feel stressed sometimes because you don’t know what to do next. If this happens, it’s important to relax and calm yourself down so you can collect your thoughts. One way of doing it is through regular meditation.
With mediation, you can get a more holistic perspective on your situation. You won’t jump to conclusions right away as you are focused on the present. This will then reduce your stress and effectively increase your patience with yourself and to your loved ones. Other activities like Yoga, also known as “moving meditation”. It can help physically and mentally relax your body, mind, and soul. You may enroll in a Yoga class near you.
Caution: Some people resort to using recreational drugs like heroin, Ecstasy, etc. to escape from stress easily. However, that’s not a good idea. The more you become dependent on drugs, the more you cannot control yourself. Not to mention, getting addicted requires extensive rehabilitation.
Method 4: Understand Your Family, Friend, or Partner
Understanding is the major key to overcoming anxious attachment triggers. As mentioned, your insecurity in the relationship may be triggered when you feel lonely because your loved ones are busy or away from you. It’s okay. You need to start understanding that they also have other things to do just like you do.
You have to consider that everyone is not always physically or emotionally available. Sometimes, they are not available because they are fixing their own problems or whatnot. However, if the person that’s causing this is your partner, it would also be safe to ask for reassurance or ask them what they are doing. This way, you wouldn’t need to overthink or get anxious anymore.
Method 5: Workout or Do Your Hobbies More Often
Apart from controlling your mind passively, you may also turn to physical activities and hobbies. These things can positively affect your outlook, too. You may start strengthening your body by hitting the gym. They say if you have a sound mind, you should also have a sound body. In addition, sports such as boxing, running, swimming, etc. can also help you vent out and be distracted from negative thoughts.
And most importantly, you should also immerse yourself in your hobbies such as reading books, watching movies, painting, etc. Anything that makes you happy and content can help lessen anxious attachment issues.
Tip: Go to therapy. In case your anxious attachment goes out of hand, the best favor you can do for yourself is to go and see a therapist. You will know it’s beyond your control when it greatly affects your life on a day-to-day basis. There are anxiety-management courses and support groups out there that you can join, too. They can help you explore and master your emotions.
It’s important that you learn to control your anxious attachment so it won’t unnecessarily interfere with your personal relationships at home, work, or with your love life. While it’s true that learning to beat such an issue is difficult, you still need to try. Only then will you be able to control and recognize your emotions as you go through them.
Most importantly, do not blame yourself for being anxiously attached to people. There are many factors that contribute to it, and most of them can be traced back to how you were raised. Just do your best and keep faith that you can overcome it.
How common is the anxious attachment style?Alex Torres2022-11-08T10:11:29+00:00
Yes. Although anxiously attached people appear to be a bad match, there are a lot of couples out there that are able to overcome such issues. As long as you and your partner have good communication, every problem you both may encounter can be easily fixed.