10 Ways to Reduce Anxiety

10 Ways to Reduce Anxiety

Anxiety is a mood condition which can be caused by different psychological, biological and individual factors. Anxiety is a broad term; there are specific disorders, (anxiety disorders) that fall into this category.  Some common ones include: panic attacks, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), phobias, obsessive anxiety disorder, (OCD) and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). If you suffer from anxiety, whether mild or severe, and would like help to eliminate it, here are several ways to reduce your anxiety and keep you relaxed:

Take a walk or exercise. Step outside and walk, freeing your mind of any problems. Don’t think about where you’re going, just let your feet take you there as you enjoy the scenery. Stretching can ease the tension in your body. It also prevents injury. It is good to stretch before bed to leave your body and mind ready for a great night’s sleep. Working out can also relax your mind as you focus on the task at hand and think of every motion your body is making.

Do breathing exercises. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. Slowly inhale from your nose and exhale from your mouth. Feel your diaphragm move up into the ribcage and drop back down. Take five to ten minutes to do this and simply let all your problems disappear. Aromatherapy also helps reduce anxiety. Breathe in the fragrances and allow them to liven your mood. Whether you fill your house with Glad fresheners, candles, potpourri or even incense, be sure to let these smells captivate you and relax your mind.

Meditate or get a Massage. Meditation is a great way to clear your mind of its problems.  Take the time to appreciate life. When you open your mind to the good things in the world it is easier for you to feel happy about your life. Massages also help to clear the mind and relax the muscles. Enjoy the time and allow yourself to be pampered; it doesn’t happen often!

Listen to some music. Put on some relaxing music, or your favorite songs, and simply sit in a chair listening to them. Do not start working; do not start cooking; just let your mind get swept away by the message and tune you are listening to.

Read a good book or write your own words down. A good book can transport you into someone else’s mind or give you the opportunity to learn about things that interest you. This helps you to forget about your problems.  Simply pay attention to the material that is right in front of you. Do not let in any problems but those in the book.

Have some chocolate. Chocolate is proven to release phenylethylamine in the brain which can cause changes in blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Once changed, these levels can lead to feelings of alertness and excitement. Chocolate can lower your depression and increase your mood.

Clean and remove the clutter. Clutter creates confusion and chaos; if your environment is cluttered, stress can increase and that leads to anxiety. Clear your cluttered house and clear the clutter in your mind. Feng Shui is a great way to make your house more serene and relaxed.

Use guided imagery. This exercise is a way to visually calm yourself by simply closing your eyes and imagining a place where you feel relaxed, whether it is the beach, a grassy field, or enjoying a beautiful sunset.  Wherever it is, find a place that you enjoy and visualize it. The important part of this exercise is to try your best to visualize the scenery and escape to that picture.

Go near or in water. You can lie by the pool or walk by the beach, take a hot bath, or even soak your feet in a foot bath. Water has a calming effect.  Be consumed by it and try to relax. Taking a hot bath can help loosen your muscles and soothe you, especially if you put on some music and place candles around you. Foot baths can also work; add some flowers, like lavender petals, and relax. Take this time to pamper yourself and do not rush, or you will become more agitated.

Try to avoid caffeine. It may be tough, but it will be beneficial in the long run for you to reduce your caffeine consumption. Caffeine makes your mood heightened and when you crash from caffeine high you are more susceptible to feelings of anxiety or depression.  Try green tea as a healthy alternative to your morning cup of coffee!