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Finding Peace: A 9-Day Novena for Overcoming Anxiety

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Finding Peace: A 9-Day Novena for Overcoming Anxiety

Anxiety is a common experience that many people struggle with on a daily basis. It can come from a variety of sources, such as work, relationships, or health concerns. In some cases, anxiety can be severe and debilitating, making it difficult to carry out daily activities.

If you’re currently experiencing anxiety and are looking for ways to find peace and calmness amid the chaos, consider trying this 9-day novena. This prayer sequence has been designed to help calm your mind and spirit so that you may overcome any fear or uncertainty in your life.

Each day of the novena will focus on a different aspect of peace-building so that by the end of the nine days, you’ll have developed tools to overcome anxiety long-term. Whether you’re religious or not doesn’t matter – this prayer sequence is open to all with an open heart and mind.

Day 1: Acknowledging Your Anxiety

“Praise be to God who comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others.” – 2 Corinthians 1:4

The first step towards overcoming anxiety is acknowledging its presence in your life. During Day One’s prayer session take an honest look at how much fear and unease plague your mind throughout each day.

  • What triggers these feelings?
  • How do they manifest themselves in my life?
  • Name ways I try (but fail) at coping with them?

You don’t have worry about getting rid of these feelings today! That’s what the rest of Days two through eight are here for! Just acknowledge their existence without judgment during today’s time with God.

Day 2: Surrendering to God

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” – Proverbs 3:5-6

During Day Two’s prayer session, you’ll need to allow yourself to surrender control. It’s important that you recognize that you can’t fix anxiety by yourself. Though it may be challenging at first but give control over to God so that He may help guide you towards the peace.

  • What worries are holding me back?
  • How do they keep me from peace?
  • In what specific areas do I need guidance?

Day 3: Releasing Guilt and Shame

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God.” – Romans 8:38-39

Guilt and shame can weigh heavily on an anxious mind. On day three of our novena take a deep dive into these feelings during prayer time:

  • In what ways has my guilt shaped my thoughts?
  • Does my guilt stem from a specific occurrence or is it more general?
  • If possible take small steps toward forgiveness both for others and myself.

Day 4: Fostering Gratitude

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” – Thessalonians 5:18

The fourth day of our novena is a great time to foster gratitude within yourself. Despite the circumstances, there’s always something to be grateful for, even during troubling times

  • List five things you’re grateful for today.
  • Think back on years past and see if you can recall situations that once brought joy.
  • Try to stay present throughout the day and savor small moments of happiness

Day 5: Forgiving Others

“Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” – Colossians 3:13

Forgiveness isn’t always easy, but on Day Five of this novena, we’ll focus on letting go of past hurt through forgiveness:

  • List all people in your life who have caused strife or tension in your life lately.
  • Try offering prayers toward these individuals wholeheartedly wishing them peace and love instead of affliction..
  • You may need more than one day allocated to this practice. Don’t feel rushed or pressured into forgiving anyone before it’s time. It’s important that we take our time with matters like these but commit to forgiveness when ready.

Day 6: Practicing Mindfulness

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

– Philippians 4:6-7

Mindfulness is an excellent way to reduce anxiety over time through daily practice:

  • Sit quietly today for ten minutes without distraction focusing only on my breath entering & leaving my nostrils.
  • Notice any other thoughts that come up but let them pass by without judgment.

Day 7: Reaffirming Self-Worth

“For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. The Lord your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession.” – Deuteronomy 7:6

Doubt and self-hatred can be debilitating when it comes to anxiety. On Day Seven we’ll focus on reaffirming that we’re all worthy in our own right:

  • The bible says that each one of us is unique and valuable in our way as per Ephesians 2:10
  • Note down five things about myself that makes me unique.
  • Spend time trying to view yourself objectively during today’s prayer session. Embrace who you are, knowing God created you with intention and purpose

Day 8: Setting Intentions

“Commit everything you do to the LORD. Trust him, and he will help you.” – Psalms 37:5

Your wider goals might seem distant or unattainable when anxiety is at play in life.. That’s why Day Eight we’ll focus on realistic goal setting:

    • Reflect honestly about what I want from life/this situation?
    • Write down steps towards achieving each objective listed above.

Day Nine: Embracing Inner Peace

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” – John 14:27

Finally, on Day Nine we’ll focus on embracing peace in our hearts, despite external circumstances:

  • Practice deep breathing exercises for five minutes.
  • Quietly repeat a calming mantra or prayer.

FAQs

Do I have to practice this novena for nine days straight?
It’s best to practice the novena daily consecutively for maximum benefit. But life happens, so do what you can and don’t beat yourself up if it takes longer than nine days!
What if I’m not religious?
You can still find peace through non-religious practices such as meditation and gratitude journaling. Don’t be afraid of taking inspiration from spiritual practices even though you don’t believe in them wholly.
How often should I practice mindful exercises?
You can start by committing to five to ten minutes of mindfulness practice daily. As a beginner, you can gradually work towards more extended periods with time!
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