Top Tips To Help Soothe Stress And Anxiety In 2023
Taking care of your long-term mental and physical health is an important part of stress management. However, there isn’t always time to take a nap, hike a fourteener, or read a novel.
Anxiety often is described as sustained, excessive worry that a person cannot control related to the anticipation of a future threat, such as a traumatic event. At times, anxiety can have a significant, adverse effect on daily life, work, relationships, and overall happiness. Try out these simple techniques to help you or your loved ones feel the sweet relief of having no anxiety.
The first part of this journey to relief is to be mindful that you are stressed and have anxiety. Being real with yourself helps build self-trust, character, and will keep you, your mind and body healthy.
How Anxiety Might Appear:
Physically, anxiety can appear as:
- Chest pain
- Diarrhea, stool pattern changes or upset stomach.
- Increased heart rate
- Muscle aches
- Shortness of breath
The Negative Effects Of Anxiety
Left unchecked, anxiety can negatively affect your life in these ways:
- Interrupting daily life
- Causing issues at home, school, work and socially.
- Not wanting to participate in normal daily activities or take new steps in life due to fear.
- Increasing risk for depression, suicide, and failure to progress in life.
- Increasing risk for physical distress, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, chest pain and tremors.
- Increasing risk for poor decision-making and communication.
So, What Can I Do? First, Take A Breath
In this simple, powerful technique, you take long, slow, deep breaths (also known as abdominal or belly breathing). As you breathe, you gently disengage your mind from distracting thoughts and sensations. Breath focus can be especially helpful for people with eating disorders to help them focus on their bodies in a more positive way. However, this technique may not be appropriate for those with health problems that make breathing difficult, such as respiratory ailments or heart failure.
This practice involves sitting comfortably, focusing on your breathing, and bringing your mind’s attention to the present moment without drifting into concerns about the past or the future. This form of meditation has enjoyed increasing popularity in recent years. Research suggests it may be helpful for people with anxiety, depression, and pain.
Set Small Goals For Yourself
Set small daily goals and aim for daily consistency rather than perfect workouts. It’s better to walk every day for 15-20 minutes than to wait until the weekend for a three-hour fitness marathon. Lots of scientific data suggests that frequency is most important.
Create Tension To Release Tension
Progressive muscle relaxation helps with de-stressing by tapping into your mind-body connection. The idea is simple: Tense up your muscle groups one by one—really squeezing until they’re pretty tense for 30 seconds each—and then release them all at once. Try this five-minute tutorial via Insight Timer after your next meeting if you feel an anxiety attack coming on.
Picture the Voice or Face of Someone You Love
If you feel upset or distressed, visualize someone positive in your life. Imagine their face or think of what their voice sounds like. Imagine them telling you that the moment is tough, but that you’ll get through it.
Repeat kind, compassionate phrases to yourself. Say it either aloud or in your head, as many times as you need.
- I’m having a rough time, but I’ll make it through.
- I’m strong, and I can move through this pain.
- I’m trying hard, and I’m doing my best.
Touch Something Comforting
This could be your favorite blanket, a much-loved T-shirt, a smooth stone, a soft carpet, or anything that feels good to touch. Think about how it feels under your fingers or in your hand. If you have a favorite sweater, scarf, or pair of socks, put them on and spend a moment thinking about the sensation of the fabric on your skin.