Bills, work, family obligations…the list goes on and on. When life gets overwhelming, anxiety can arise, but just because it happens doesn’t mean that it has to take over your life.
Below are some tips to reduce your anxiety according to psychologists, primarily by taking controlled breaths to relax your body. It can also prevent you from hyperventilating.
- Breathe in slowly for about four to six seconds.
- Hold for about three seconds.
- Breathe out slowly.
- Repeat 10 to 20 times.
There are several kinds of breathing exercises. Try a few until you find the right one for you. Breathing exercises are not just helpful when you are having a panic attack, but can also improve your overall well-being when incorporated into your daily routine. When you are anxious, your mind races a million miles a minute. Exercise is a great way to distract it. Not only does exercise promote healthy breathing, but it focuses all the extra adrenaline in your body towards your workout. Exercise also releases endorphins, which improve overall mood.
Try incorporating regular exercise into your routine, and you will surely see a difference in your anxiety levels. Research shows that even going for a walk in the park helps reduce anxiety levels and improve memory. Whether by running or doing yoga, finding the right aerobic activity for you is important.
Sometimes it is hard to pinpoint the root cause of your anxiety, but talking it out can help you figure out what is truly bothering you, and therefore reduce your anxiety. Even if the problem has no foreseeable solution talking to someone about it will give you a sense of relief. There is no shame in suffering from anxiety, so do not be shy about asking for help. Whenever you feel anxious, talk to a loved one about it. They can give you some new perspective on the issue or keep your mind off it. Remember, anxiety is temporary. If you have ever experienced a panic attack you know that it can feel like a heart attack. Anxiety can feel like the end of the world, but it is not. Anxiety has a way of playing tricks on your mind.
One way to reduce your anxiety is by fighting back these thoughts. Next time you are feeling anxious ask yourself:
- Is there a reason why I am feeling anxious?
- Am I exaggerating the problem?
- Is there something I can do to solve it?
- How do I want to feel right now?
Oftentimes, anxiety is caused by people worrying the future, something uncertain, or something over which they have no control. By asking yourself these questions, you can figure out if there is a valid reason for how you are feeling, or if it just your mind hijacking your emotions.
It may sound silly, but visualization can do wonders for reducing anxiety. Imagining that you are soaking in sunrays on a tropical island (or in your own ‘happy place’) can help reduce anxiety. When you are anxious, it is important to remove yourself from that situation. Whether it is by imagining you are somewhere else, meditating, listening to music, watching your favorite movie, or playing with your pet, it is important to not let your mind go down a rabbit hole of negativity.
There is no fast solution that eliminates anxiety forever, but making small changes in how you deal with anxiety can make a significant impact in your well-being. It is important to realize that you are not alone, and to ask for help when you need it. Remember, self-care is paramount. If you take care of your mind, body, and spirit, you will see changes in all aspects of your life, one small step at a time.