Life happens to all of us. Whether you are a multitasking mother, a student with a heavy class load, or even a retiree – we all experience stress in our lives in one shape or form. And, with stress comes the omnipresent sister anxiety. It really is a matter of perception – what stresses one individual won’t bother another. When you think about it, has anyone gone an entire day without experiencing any anxiety? The boyfriend that didn’t return your call – why not? The car that breaks down and needs a couple hundred dollars in repairs – will it fit on the credit card? The child who stays out late – are they safe or just being rebellious? Stress creeps into our lives. Everyday. In multiple ways. When we have anticipation on what an outcome will be anxiety rears it’s ugly head. If I could wave a magic wand and say, poof! Anxiety be gone I would to each and everyone! Myself included!
There are many prescriptions on the market today for anxiety and in some cases it is very necessary so please discuss with your healthcare practitioner before making any decisions. The following 10 tips have been used by yours truly and proved helpful in my time of need. All can be used in conjunction with medications with the hope that one day you can wean yourself off the prescriptions. Keep in mind, things take time and results don’t happen overnight. As the first tip suggests, developing patience will go a long way.
1. Develop tolerance and patience. People make mistakes – and that is okay. The first step to finding peace with this crazy fast paced society and reduce stress and anxiety yourself is by developing tolerance for those people and things around you that drive you mad. Learn to just let it go. Count to ten, take deep breaths, or walk away – whatever is needed to learn how to be patient. Practice this and practice it again and again until it becomes a second nature habit.
2. Meditate. Try to make time to meditate for 15 minutes each day. If you don’t know how or don’t like the idea of meditating, practice taking deep breaths at least once a day. This can help with circulation and ease your level of stress. There are numerous wonderful books and videos out there that can teach you how to meditate – it just requires a little practice. Here is a great beginner’s book for meditation here.
3. Plan Ahead. There are certain things in life that just happen. They may include a traffic jam on your way to work or a long line at the post office. If you are prepared for these things, then you will be able to handle these annoying situations a lot better. Give yourself an extra 20 minutes to get to work to allow for the rush hour traffic. Its a lot better for your sanity to be sitting in your car thinking “good thing I planned ahead and left 20 minutes early” rather than honking the horn and swearing for being late.
4. Consider Getting A Pet. A dog or a cat can provide unconditional love and support, which can lead to stress and anxiety relief. They will lift your spirits in more ways than can be expressed. Dogs can motivate you to exercise and are always around for a cuddle. Ohhhh who doesn’t just LOVE a doggie cuddle?! However, before you consider a pet, make sure you have the financial security and freedom to look after the constant demands of a pet, especially a dog.
5. Find Daily Alone Time. Between work, the kids, your spouse and your friends, it might seem like you don’t get a single moment to yourself. Find that moment. This could just be shutting the doors and taking a 20 minute bath. You need to find time to reflect and relax and this is best done by yourself.
6. Drink Tea. Tea has calming powers that can do wonders for your spirit. Try chamomile or green tea and indulge in the tantalizing tastes and natural goodness.
7. Forget Wrong Doings. The past is in the past. In order to reduce stress and anxiety, you need to move on. Forget about those problems that are holding you back. They are in the past and should be left there. Step away from that heavy burden and look towards the future.
8. Invest In Aromatherapy Candles. Aromatherapy candles are not expensive (well most aren’t) and can really lift your mood. Check out this cool set here.
9. Do Something For Someone Else. Improve your sense of self by thinking about someone else. The little things make all the difference for improving your self worth, and lifting others moods. When you think of other’s you won’t be fretting over your self and any problems that may be bothering you. Even if just for a little while it truly helps.
10. Stop Trying To Control The Things You Simply Cannot. This is a BIG one. The Universe works in mysterious ways. You need to accept what has been given to you and stop trying to change what hasn’t. Acceptance is the key to reducing or eliminating anxiety. It doesn’t mean at all you should stop dreaming or striving for better things. Manifestation is still important. What it means is you simply cannot change some things. Example would be how someone else acts. Perhaps you have a relative that has an annoying habit – it may just be a personality trait they have and you simply cannot change that. At some point you just need to ‘accept’ and let it go because you cannot control others.
The above list are just a few of the things you can do to help deal with anxiety on an ongoing basis. As mentioned in other posts, it’s about keeping your mind off yourself. Give a few of these ideas a try and just watch for a reduction in your anxiety symptoms.
Until next time.