Most everyone has experienced stressors that may cause anxiety, whether getting to work on time or receiving a good grade in school. Still, it is often short-lived. But many individuals struggle with it daily. In other words, it’s not just about taking a test that causes anxiety but getting out of bed, leaving the house, making decisions, or talking to people. Pretty much it can be almost anything or everything. And though no one is entirely free of stress, there are some ways to decrease your struggles with anxiety. So, let’s take a look.
1. Stay in the present moment.
How many of us live in the past or worry about the future but never live in the present? Next thing you know, we have no idea where our life went. So, remember that we can’t undo the past nor jump into the future, but we can live in the moment by using grounding techniques.
Grounding techniques are about being mindful of the present, especially when feeling overwhelmed. And though you might find your mind roaming during this practice, it’s not uncommon. Therefore, rather than judging it, recenter yourself.
Grounding techniques using your five senses:
Focus on your surroundings/colors/patterns (sight)
- Focus on your surroundings/colors/patterns (sight)
- Listen to surrounding sounds/play some music (sound)
- Sip on a cup of tea (taste)
- Savor a scent you might like (smell)
- Touch something soft/cuddle with a pet (touch)
2. Take some deep breaths.
Does your heart ever race when you’re in traffic or preparing for a test? Do you then find yourself screaming with road rage or sweating while waiting for your teacher to hand out the test? It can affect one’s mental and physical health while in constant anxiety.
Taking deep breaths has been proven to slow one’s heart rate, decrease stress hormones, and create a calm state. And the best part is you don’t have to wait until the stress builds. Plus, you can do it anywhere without others noticing.
See if you can do the following deep breath techniques three consecutive times:
- Inhale through your nose for five seconds
- Hold your breath for five seconds
- Exhale with your mouth open for five seconds
There are also fitness apps that can help monitor your heart rate.
3. Practice radical acceptance.
Radical acceptance is a method that entails facing one’s fears and accepting them and yourself without judgment. You might think that’s the last thing you’ll ever do, but the brain is automatic. So, the more you attempt to push those uncomfortable thoughts away, the more they will fight back.
Here’s an example of facing one’s anxiety:
- Acknowledge when you experience anxiety
- Accept the unpleasant feelings without judgment
- Think of something healthy that has helped you in the past to go about your day or find something new
For example, taking a walk or shower, reading, or gardening can help. Whatever works for you.
This technique may initially provoke more anxiety and, therefore, be more challenging. However, it will decrease through repeated exposure. Although, you might consider seeking therapy if this method is too difficult to do by yourself.
4. Move your body.
Your body can create more pent-up energy if it doesn’t have a healthy outlet. Therefore, a good way to distribute it elsewhere is through activity or exercise. You don’t have to run a marathon; even a little movement can help.
Activities can include:
- Taking a short walk up the road and back
- Planting a garden
- Dancing to music
- Playing catch with a pet
- Walking around your house each hour for a minute if you frequently sit
5. Seek treatment and Support.
Millions suffer from anxiety, so knowing you aren’t alone is vital.
You don’t have to wait until things get terrible to seek treatment or attend a support group. A therapist can work with you on anxiety-reducing techniques and how your thoughts contribute to your anxiety.
Also, attending a support group with someone who can relate to your issues and listen without judgment can help relieve your sadness or loneliness. One such place for support is Barty’s Adventures. They hold special events and adventures to help men feel better about themselves by keeping active, thus improving mental health. Barty – We Are A Mental Health Initiative
No matter what you’re going through, you deserve to be supported.
Why Not Try Online Therapy?
Hopefully, these points could give some comfort, but sometimes just reading quotes isn’t enough. Online therapy can be a great option if you or a loved one is looking for more support.
Therapy through BetterHelp.com/Barty can be more affordable than traditional therapy and allows many options to communicate with your therapist from the comfort of your home. Most importantly, remember that it is okay not to be okay, and you are no less of a human for feeling your emotions and being vulnerable.
To receive 25% off your first month, head to BetterHelp.com/Barty
Feel free to drop by if you’d like to chat and just say, ‘Hey Barty,’ in strict confidence, and you can be anonymous if you wish. Or do not hesitate to leave a comment below.