Nothing is worse than having anxiety and in these times our worries are skyrocketing through the roof. What if I get sick? What if I lose my job? What if someone I love becomes affected by this virus? While these are all valid questions, we also need to learn to calm the noise in our heads.
Letting the worse case scenarios consume our thoughts is unhealthy and can be detrimental to our health. What if I told you that it doesn’t have to be like this? What if I told you that your anxiety would no longer control you but that you could control it? Here are some ways to combat anxiety during these difficult times.
1. Take A Walk
Stop what you’re doing and grab your shoes because you are about to go on a mindful walk that will change your perspective and calm your anxiety. Be sure to leave all distractions at home including your phone. As you walk, take in the environment around you. Listen as the bird’s chirp or listen as the sound of cars wisp by you.
Breathe in the fresh air and feel the warmth of the sun as it touches your skin. Shifting your focus even just for a few minutes allows your body to calm itself down and come back to a calming and steady equilibrium. Walking can also raise your endorphins and improve your mood drastically. We are all busy and if can spare a few minutes, using this technique will ease your mind and help you combat your anxiety.
2. Stay Positive
With all the negativity the media brings us it is hard not to end up in a downward spiraling rut full of negativity and anxiety. Reminding yourself of the positive things that surround you can change your attitude and decrease the anxiety you are feeling. Grab a notebook or look in the mirror and write down 10 things you are grateful for.
It can be as simple as the smell of your coffee or the way your dog greeted you when you came home. Reminding yourself of all the positive things that happened during the day makes the negativity feel irrelevant. When you have a positive mindset there is no room left for anxiety.
3. Question Your Thoughts
As if anxiety doesn’t stir up enough questions in our head, you might be wondering why I would encourage you to ask yourself more. When we are anxious, our brains start coming up with all sorts of outlandish ideas, many of which are highly unrealistic and very unlikely to occur. When you feel this way ask yourself these simple questions.
Is this worry realistic? Is this really likely to happen? If the worst possible outcome happens, what would be so bad about that? Could I handle that? What might I do? If something bad happens, what might that mean about me? Is this really true or does it just seem that way?
Questioning the rationality of your thoughts can provide insight into why you are feeling what you are feeling and it will challenge you to think smarter than your anxiety. Once you’ve given your anxiety the interrogation it needs, you will feel better rest assured.
4. Take Care Of Yourself
Nothing gets you feeling down like a panic attack, which is why it is so important to take care of ourselves when we start to feel this way. Take a bubble bath, do a facial, paint your nails, play a board game, be creative, exercise or scream your favorite song out loud while you dance around to it in your room.
The possibilities are endless and all that matters is that you are doing something that you love and that makes you happy. When your anxiety empties your cup, fill it back up with the things that you love. When your fearful thoughts haunt you, address them, rationalize them then just let them go. Easier said than done but once you master this skill you see how easy it will become to address your anxiety.
Take a deep breath, it’s going to be ok. Practicing breathing techniques to combat your anxiety is a great way to calm the storm you are feeling inside. When we experience anxiety our body switches to a fight or flight response. Deep and repetitive breathing is a powerful anxiety-reducing technique because it activates our body’s relaxation response.
Grab your yoga mat, wear something comfortable and begin to breathe in for 4 then exhale for four. Repeat this for as long as you need it.
6. The 5-5-5 Game
When you’re anxious AF, you’re often caught in a (negative) thought loop. Play this game to get back your body and stop anxiety fast.
Look around you and name 5 things you can see.
List 5 sounds you can hear.
Move 5 parts of your body that you can feel. An example being wiggling your toes or shaking your foot.
It might sound a tad silly, but this method works.
When your grandma told you to stop and smell the roses she wasn’t entirely wrong. Lavender oil has a lot of healing properties and can be a great warrior against anxiety. It promotes a feeling of calm and supports deep, restful sleep which we all need during these difficult times.
When you’re feeling anxious grab your bottle of lavender and massage it into your temples or take a deep breath until you can smell it. This will calm you down instantly and it is a convenient way to manage your anxiety quickly.
8. Ask For Help
Nobody is perfect and we all have flaws. Sometimes we may think that combatting anxiety is something that we have to deal with on our own and it’s not!
You are surrounded by people you love so in this difficult time do not be afraid to reach out to them for help. Whether it be just to make you laugh or to vent about the stress that has been waging you down. Your squad is there for you all you have to do is ask.
Combating anxiety can be stressful, but with these helpful techniques, you will find that handling your anxiety naturally is manageable. Don’t give up on yourself. You deserve to live a happy and anxiety-free life.
What is your favorite way to combat anxiety? Drop a tip in the comment section. We would love to know what you think!
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Oh Hey!Sierra here. I'm armed with an iced coffee on the daily and I have a passion for writing. When I am not writing (is that even possible?) I enjoy reading, painting, dancing and hiking.