8 Ways Therapy Helps You Cope with Stress, Anxiety, and Insecurity

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This week, LCSW and My Wellbeing community member, Zoe Reyes, discusses life changes, and how sometimes we can feel stuck or even anxious during life transitions.

Zoe explains the 8 ways therapy can help with stressful life events, and how talking to a trained professional can help us learn more about ourselves and ways to cope.

About the author: Zoe Reyes is an NYC Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) who is bicultural and bilingual (English and Spanish).

Zoe works with individuals on a wide range of issues that include: managing stress, anxiety, depression, family relationships, romantic relationships, work stress and career challenges.

She uses an eclectic approach, incorporating strategies from psychodynamic treatment and Cognitive Behavior Therapy. She also practices spiritually informed psychotherapy with those who believe it is important to incorporate their spirituality in their journey.

To contact Zoe in order to learn more about working with her, you can email her at zoereyes.lcswr@gmail.com.


Life circumstances can affect our emotions

Are you feeling more stressed, anxious or insecure than you consider normal? At one point or another, most of us do. These feelings can stem from both positive and negative life circumstances. Life circumstances require adjustment and this often increases stress levels until you become accustomed to your new norm.

Happy life events that can serve as triggers:

●      A new job or promotion

●      Moving to a new city

●      Becoming a parent

Unhappy life events that can serve as triggers:

●      Work-related stress

●      Family problems

●      Relationship issues

Whether the change is positive or negative, it can leave us feeling insecure in our role. Many young professionals have described this feeling as the imposter syndrome in college, new roles in the workplace, and in relationships.

When things stay the same, we can also feel “stuck”

Similarly, a lack of change or stagnation can trigger feelings of stress, anxiety, and/or insecurity. Many people feel stuck when they’ve been in the same job or relationship for a period of time and desire change. The thought of changing a job or relationship that has become such an important part of your life can be frightening.  Over time, that job or relationship can become part of how we identify ourselves, so the idea of separating from that job or person seems too great of a loss.

“But I have so many friends and family I can talk to.”

If you have supportive friends, family or a partner, then that is wonderful. It is also true that those close to us are limited in their ability to help us, especially when the conflict is with someone in our support network.

How therapy can help us manage stress, anxiety and insecurity

 Therapy can help you learn to manage stress, anxiety, and insecurity by teaching you to:

  1. Make connections between your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors

  2. Use coping skills to reduce how much stress, anxiety, or insecurity you experience

  3. Recognize your physical signs of stress, such as:

    1. tension in the jaw, neck/shoulders, and back

    2. headaches

    3. dizziness/lightheadedness

    4. nausea

  4. Reward yourself

  5. Radically accept yourself

  6. Gain or Regain confidence in your abilities

  7. Set goals in an achievable and healthy way

  8. Identify, reduce, and/or eliminate triggers that can intensify anxiety, like:

    1. alcohol, drugs, or misuse of prescription medications

    2. caffein and sugar

This is why seeing a therapist is most useful. As the therapist, I act as a neutral third party to help you look at situations from different perspectives and test out new ways (coping strategies) to manage the problem(s).

It is important to understand that anxiety will not completely go away overnight. The good news is that it will get better over time as you practice using the coping skills. Taking the step to open up to someone you don’t know might not be easy, but you may find a better and brighter life ahead of you.


Thank you, Zoe, for sharing your perspective and helping us to learn more about the ways therapy can help us better understand and cope with life circumstances.

If you would like to learn more about the work that Zoe does and connect with her, please email at zoereyes.lcswr@gmail.com.

Any thoughts, questions, or topics you’d like to see featured on our blog? We’re all ears: connect@mywellbeing.com or chat with us on social @findmywellbeing.