Looking For A Sense Of Calm? 7 Ways To Address Anxiety
Anxiety will take its toll, regardless of season and situation. Certainly, the unknowns of the current pandemic and future lends itself to added worry. To counteract any anxiety you may be feeling in your daily life, try adding a calming, pausing effect to your day by considering these lifestyle changes:
- Breathing exercises. They are one of the best single anti-anxiety measures. Controlling breathing and breath work exercises can offer an immediate lessening of anxiety and a sense of empowerment. Sticking with a regular routine is a great preventative strategy as well. If you need help getting started, look for my 4-7-8 breath exercise. It’s also free and always with you!
- Meditation. It can help lessen the effect of generalized anxiety by training one to focus on the present moment, thus keeping minds off fears. Meditating on a regular basis can result in significant, long-term reduction of anxiety. Either look for a local practitioner to guide your or search some popular mobile apps for assistance.
- Eliminating all sources of caffeine and stimulants from the diet. This can markedly reduce symptoms and is especially helpful in those who are stimulant sensitive. You may need to do this gradually to avoid withdrawal. If the obvious tea and coffee are not the source, look into beverages, packaged foods and particularly weight loss pills as more and more have added caffeine.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy. It can be a powerful tool for those with anxiety to help recognize distorted patterns of thinking and adopt healthy coping skills. Search for a local practitioner and make an appointment to visit and understand how it may help you.
- Journaling. Writing about anxious thoughts, worries and symptoms can help reduce stress, identify unfounded fears and monitor progress.
- Regular daily exercise. Brisk walking and moderate strength training can reduce stress and anxiety, and offer a healthy distraction from negative thoughts.
- Taking a “media break.” Eliminating TV news bulletins, the Internet, newspapers and news magazines can help anyone lessen anxiety. Eliminating exposure to regular bad news that you have no control over can be calming and uplifting. Spend a week watching only positive movies or shows, you will be amazed at how effective this is. This also goes for taking a social media break. Too often we find ourselves comparing ourselves to others’ “highlights”, adding to the anxiety burden. Consider deleting all social media apps for two weeks.
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