The anxiety ladder worksheet can be used by mental health providers during session or it can be assigned by the clinician to clients for home practice. After one identifies one’s triggers, the next step is to rank them according to severity. This is important so one knows which anxiety-provoking event to confront first. Most likely, you want to begin with a situation that causes some fear but not so much that you are likely to fail upon attempting to diffuse it.
Ideally, you want to practice your skills on a lower level worry that can bring some initial success. After your skills improve, you can then tackle higher anxiety events. For example, let’s say that you have recognized that you have a small spider phobia (level 2) but a tremendous fear of flying (level 9). You would start to practice your anxiety reduction skills by confronting spiders before you attempt to resolve your flying phobia.