Hey Thrivers! Experiencing anxiety may be more common than you think. According to the ADAA, anxiety affects 40 million adults in the U.S ages 18 and up. Finding ways to reduce stress and anxiety are the key to our sanity. I am not a licensed physician so the tips I’d like to share are what has helped me over time. I was going through a phase where I would skip out on social events, I would not clean my room for weeks, I would go weeks experiencing insomnia and overall would have trouble sleeping at night because I struggled to reduce stress and anxious thoughts effectively. I wouldn’t want to get off my bed. I would stay staring at my phone screen for hours.
Of course, there was a mix of factors contributing to this later on, one of them being a death in the family. But these symptoms started prior to that incident and they definitely worsened after the fact. It took me a very long time to get a hold of myself and to get out of this rut of feeling lousy.
These are the things that have worked for me and I hope that they help you as well:
- Listening to successful people – I stress this a lot because it’s really important to surround yourself with positivity. You’d be surprised at how much it can help uplift you. If you enjoy Instagram, find successful entrepreneurs and motivational speakers to follow because they constantly post positive and inspirational posts. You need to make a constant effort to change your environment. If you haven’t been cleaning your room – watch a youtube video on organizing your room. It will motivate you.
- Journaling – I haven’t been doing this for too long, only a few months but I have found in that short time that it has improved my mental clarity. Getting some of the thoughts in your head onto paper may help to make you feel less stressed. I do this in several ways. One is morning pages where you write down anything on your mind in 3 pages. Commit to it even if you don’t know what to write just let your thoughts flow, talk about what makes you happy, set your intentions for the day, talk about one thing you’re struggling with and how you can fix it. If you feel like doing that is too much, another way to journal is through an app called Perspective. You can write down your thoughts at the end of your day and it has emojis to pick how you’re feeling. If you prefer the digital route at the end of your day or even in the beginning of your day, you can do that. Another way that I journal is weekly. So every Sunday I do a weekly mindset reset. I purchased this book from my local Marshalls and it’s called 52 Lists for Happiness. So it has a new prompt each week and I think it’s a great way to start your week with a fresh mindset, honing in on your habits and tracking your actions and thoughts.
- Meditation – I can’t tell you how much this has unknowingly helped me. I wasn’t meditating for the longest time and I feel such a difference on the days that I don’t. It has helped me to clear my mind and relax even though I just do it for 10 minutes a day. It makes a difference. You will feel much calmer and like you can take on your day. The apps I recommend are Simply Being and Oak. Those are the ones I have tried out that I feel that has worked for me. Trust me, you will thank yourself later for doing it.
- Breathing Exercises – This is such a simple one but it can help. Recently, I had some kind of weird episode at work. I didn’t meditate that day and I was feeling insanely anxious. My heart was pounding but I was at work and I knew I had to remain professional. At some point, it got so bad that I just wanted to sit and cry and I felt like I couldn’t breathe. Luckily, I had a break in the day so I just ran outside in the 40-degree weather and just walked and worked on breathing in and out slowly. I kept my hand on my chest to calm myself down as I did the breathing exercises. To be honest, it took me 10 minutes of just breathing in and out and walking outside in the cold, but it helped me get through the remainder of the day. Sometimes you may be in a situation where you can’t just get up and leave as much as you may want to, just breathe. Make sure you’re taking slow deep breaths and just focusing on your breathing NOT on what is making you anxious.
- Taking vitamins – As I mentioned I am not a licensed physician, but these are the supplements that I have been taking. Consult your physician before taking any vitamins. I had taken a quiz from Care/Of and based on my needs I purchased specific vitamins that they recommended. One of them is Rhodiola which is an adaptogen that helps your body respond to stress in a healthy way. There are also other vitamins that at Sephora that help with the response to high-stress levels. Do your own research to see what may help you. This WILL NOT get rid of your anxiety but it may help reduce it.
One thing to always remember is to take everything one day at a time. I am currently implementing all of these into my daily routine and it helps me. If you want a change, you have to work for it. But don’t overwhelm yourself by focusing on the end result. Start with today and just focus on making today count. Then bring that same energy and effort into tomorrow when it comes. I truly hope you try these out and see the change over time. It’s okay if you miss out one day. It happens, just remember to not give up. Just keep going. Take Care!