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7 Effective Ways to Reduce Anxiety

Are anxiety and worrisome thoughts keeping you up during the night? You’re not alone. Most people experience various levels of anxiety at some point in their lives. Luckily, you can calm your nerves with some helpful tips. Here are our top stress relievers.

The usual anxiety symptoms include being irritable, having sleep problems and feeling on-edge. A severe anxiety attack can even cause trembling and heart palpitations. And while it’s OK to get mildly panicky when facing an important life decision, nobody should feel that much fear and worry daily. Luckily, there are ways to reduce pressure and stress via lifestyle changes and other helpful tips. Here is our top advice on how to relax your mind and soothe your anxiety.

1. Do Anything

Activities like vacuuming your carpet or taking a short walk interrupt the flow of anxious thoughts. Even standing up when feeling stressed can be enough to regain control over the mind. Try it out. It sounds simple, and it is.

Another activity that’s great for anxiety relief is playing games on gaming apps. Whether you’re into games like 50 lions or Angry Birds, they’ll keep your mind focused on what’s happening on the screen. When you finish the game, you might discover that your worrisome thoughts have left you.

2. Put On a Funny Clip

Here’s the thing: you don’t even need to watch a whole episode of your favorite comedy show to lighten the mood. Open up YouTube and see a few 10-second clips of your best-loved comedian cracking jokes. Laughter is beneficial for your mental health and works as an excellent anxiety treatment.

3. Ask a Friend’s Opinion

Worries seem so much more menacing when you’re keeping them to yourself. Instead, call up a friend and share what’s bothering you. Another person can help you with insightful opinions about your situation and point out some positive angles. Plus, saying your troubles out loud to somebody helps you to see the complications more clearly. New solutions can pop into your head instantly once you’ve articulated out loud the nature of your problems.

4. Eat Less Sugar

When anxiety and feelings of fear start to come over, many of us turn to sweets to relieve the tension. Unfortunately, sugar can worsen anxiety. A glass of water or protein works much better. It gives your body the fuel it can use for recovery.

5. The Rule of Three Threes

Here’s a trick that will help you get back to the present moment and halt your brain from generating negative thoughts. All you need to do is to say out loud the first three things you see around you. Then do the same with three sounds. And finish by moving any three body parts. By the end of the process, you’ll feel much more centered and at ease.

6. Remember to Breathe

Breathing in and out deeply into your belly is one of the best ways to calm yourself in any situation. There’s no need to count your breaths or the length of your inhales and exhales. Just try to get the air past your lungs and into your belly. It slows you down and helps you regain control over your thoughts.

7. Check if Your Anxiety Is Rooted in Reality

Anxiety, by definition, means having recurring concerns about one’s future. But people with lots of fear and stress tend to focus on only the worst-case scenarios. It’s helpful to take a step back every once in a while and check how realistic your predictions are. For example, if you’ve got a job interview coming up, you might feel completely unprepared and think there’s no way you’re going to get the job. But what’s the reality? You probably know pretty much about the position to which you’re applying. You might not be the perfect fit for the job, but you’ve got plenty of skills that could be useful and land you the job. This reframing of your fears teaches your brain to stay rational when dealing with fearful situations.

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These were our tips on how to relieve anxiety. Use them whenever you feel your stress levels getting too high. And remember: fear is often rooted in irrational thoughts. If you share your problems with a friend and try to see the future more realistically, it can be enough to soothe your worries. Plus, the most simple dietary changes like eating less sugar and drinking more water can be very effective in calming the body and mind. Add deep breathing to the mix, and you should be prepared to tackle any situation with ease and confidence. It’s up to you.

What are some of your most effective anxiety exercises? Share your favorites in the comments.

Photo by Anthony Tran on Unsplash

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