Anxiety and worry can be overcome by seeking refuge in Allah through consistency in dhikr. As imam Ibn al-Qayyim has pointed out, dhikr entails manifold benefits: The most important of which is that it brings us closer to Allah, while keeping us away from Satan who whispers all kinds of thoughts and suggestions in our minds/hearts. The next most important benefit of dhikr is that it removes all feelings of grief, worry and anxiety from our hearts and bestows on our souls true serenity, joy, peace and bliss. Allah says, “Those who believe and whose hearts find tranquility in the remembrance of Allah. Lo, it is in the remembrance of Allah that hearts find tranquility (Qur’an: 13: 28).
We also read that the Prophet, peace be upon him, used to look expectantly towards Prayer (being the perfect means of dhikr) as the true source of bringing joy to the heart. He said, “The true joy of my heart is in Prayer.” It is also worth remembering that, according to Islam, Allah alone is the Ultimate Source of Peace; His name is al- Salaam.
Therefore, I advise you to practice dhikr consistently so that it becomes your second nature. This can be achieved through consistency: The first step towards is to be diligent in performance your Salah consistently and regularly at the appointed times, while being fully awake and mindful of the meanings and feeling the true spirit of it. Secondly, condition yourself to turn to Allah always in du’a and istighfaar. An excellent way of establishing consistency in dhikr is by forcing yourself to say and meditate on the Power Words such as the following:
Subhaana Allaah wa bihamdihi subhaana Allaahi al-azheem
(Glory be to Allah, and Praise be to Him; glory be to Allah the Tremendous
Subhaana Allaah bi hamdihee ‘dada khalqihi, wa ridhaa’a nafsihi, wa zinata ‘rshihi, wa midaada kalimaatihi
(Glory be to Allah and praise be to Him in a manner that befits the (infinite) number of His creation, and as it pleases Him, and as it befits the true weight of His Throne as well as His infinite knowledge).
Furthermore, condition yourself to read the following du’as on a regular basis as they have been prescribed by the Prophet, peace be upon him, for repelling anxieties and gaining serenity and peace. You are best advised to read them odd number of times (preferably three) in the mornings as well at night prior to retiring to bed:
Laa ilaaha illa Allaahu al-azheem al-haleem; Laa ilaaha illa Allaahu, rabbu al-‘arshi al-‘azheem, laa ilaaha illa Allahu, rabbu al-ssamaawaati wa al-ardhi wa rabbu al-‘arshi al-kareem
(There is no god but Allah, the Tremendous, the Clement; there is no god but Allah, Lord of the Mighty Throne, there is no god but Allah, Lord of the heavens and the earth, and Lord of the Noble Throne).
Allaahumma innee (If you are male add: ‘abduka wa ibn abdika ibn amatika; if, however, you are female add: amatuka wa bintu abdika wa bintu amatika), naasiyatee bi yadika qadhin fiyya hukmuka ‘adlun fiyya qadhaa’uka as’aluka bi kulli ismin huwa laka sammayta bihi nafsaka aw anzaltahu fee kitaabika aw allamtahu ahadan min khalqika aw ista’tharta bihi fee ilm al-ghaybi indaka an taj’ala al-Qur’ana al-rabee’a qalbee wa noora basaree wa jilaa’a huznee wa dhahaaba hammee
(O Allah, I am your servant, son/daughter of your servant, my forelock is under your firm grips, Your decree in my case is sure to be realized, and Your judgment is just. I ask of You by invoking every single name that you possess, with which You have called Yourself, or You have revealed in Your scripture or You have instructed any of Your creation or You have kept hidden with Yourself in the knowledge of the unseen realities to make the Qur’an the spring of my hearts, light of my eyes, and dispeller of my grief and remover of my anxieties).
Yaa hayyu yaa qayyoomu bi rahmatika astagheethu
(O the Ever- Living, the Eternal Source of all beings! I beseech Your mercy and assistance (in my distress).
I pray to Allah to grant all of us freedom from anxieties and worries, and bestow on our hearts true peace, serenity and tranquility in both worlds; verily, He is All-Hearing, All-Knowing--aameen.