Anxiety can range anywhere from slight to debilitating and can come at any moment in the day. It instills fear and worry into our bodies. If you have anxiety disorder, you understand how real those emotions feel and that even if someone tells you not to worry, the anxiety is still full force. Anxiety is dangerous, mentally and physically, and can quickly take over your life if you don't try to find some relief. People with serious anxiety disorders tend to live so much in the past and future that they don't get a chance to even remember the present moment. If anxiety is something that you are dealing with, know you are not alone. There are many different forms of anxiety, from severe specific phobias to OCD to generalized anxiety disorder. 10 percent of teenagers and 40 percent of adults deal with anxiety disorders in some form. If you or someone you love is struggling with an anxiety related disorder, we are here to help. Read on for 10 natural ways to reduce anxiety. If you are having debilitating anxiety or a medical emergency, please seek a medical professional right away.
1. Breathe in, breathe out
Focusing on your breathing is an immediate way to reduce anxiety. Once you feel your heartbeat racing, take a moment to let yourself breathe. Anxiety can sometimes make us think illogical, but if you take 3 minutes to breathe in and out you can calm your body down enough to begin to think logically. It's an easy way to ground yourself at the moment when it is most needed.
2. Watch what you eat and drink
This is long term solution for reducing anxiety. Eat healthy foods, have healthy thoughts. Diet is so important when it comes to mental health. First step is to limit your caffeine and sugar intake. If you are prone to anxiety, you do not want to eat or drink anything that has the potential to make you anxious. The second step is to buy healthy foods, and to buy foods that naturally reduce anxiety. Try eating avocados, spinach, salmon, or turkey and drinking calming tea and lots of water!
3. Sleep right
Another long term solution to reducing anxiety is to have a consistent sleep schedule. When your body has a more concrete schedule, your mood will reflect that consistency. Try going to bed at the same time every night and sticking to that plan. Even if this doesn't curb your anxiety for good, you may be able to react better to anxiety inducing situations because you have been getting consistent sleep. Sleep is your body's time to recharge.
4. Listen to music
If you are prone to anxiety attacks and feel one coming on, try listening to instrumental music or something calming. Music is a relaxation technique for your brain and your body. Make a calming playlist that you can put on when you are doing things that normally make you feel overwhelmed, such as cleaning or paying bills. Having this calm music in the background may help you get less anxious.
5. Meditate regularly
Regular mediation is a way to reduce the amount of anxiety in your life and also a great way to deal with anxiety attacks when they come. Try mediating in the morning and really focus and ground yourself in what is important and let the stressors in your life melt away. Daily mediation is a great way to stay in excellent mental health.
Many times the thoughts we have are not facts. Our brains are telling us one thing, when in reality the situation is slightly different. When you are not feeling anxious, take time to write down your common anxiety thoughts. Does your brain always fill with ideas such as "I can never do this" or "things will never work out" when you are feeling anxious? Write down 5 reasons why you CAN do whatever it is you get anxious about, and 5 reasons why things CAN work out if you try hard enough. Keep that paper in your pocket and pull it out when you feel anxious. Yeah, it may be hard to focus as sometimes anxiety can be so overwhelming, but the key here is to try. Just knowing that your anxious thoughts aren't always facts is comforting in itself.
7. Talk a walk
Get fresh air and go for a walk. Remove yourself from your anxiety by letting yourself breath and enjoy some new scenery. Let your mind go free and enjoy what is around you instead of what your brain has been thinking about.
Art is perfect way to release anxiety. Make something beautiful out of those raw emotions you are feeling. Write until you feel less anxious, or paint the night away. Some people find that anxiety can give them a creative energy. Try an adult coloring book and use that as a release to your anxiety.
Exercise is an easy and healthy way to reduce anxiety. Exercising daily will stabilize your mood. Find something you love doing and commit time to it. It doesn't have to be running or lifting weights to be exercise. Try snowboarding, rock climbing, or even ping pong. Anything that gets you to release anxiety in a healthy way is great for your body.
10. Talk to someone
Whether it is therapy or talking to a friend, let someone know about your anxiety. The worst thing you can do is keep your anxiety a secret. Mental health is important, and being able to talk about it with others is just as important. Open up and let people know what you are experiencing. Anxiety is real, and you deserve to feel safe talking about it.
This post was originally published on Laila Ali Lifestyle