Anxiety can be a natural part of life, especially these days when the world has become quite chaotic and unpredictable. If you aren't anxious there may very well be something quite wrong with you!
Even in the best of times, though, anxiety does have a real function. When you're anxious, you may be more motivated to be prepared for the unexpected and stay organized. Anxiety can help you to calculate the risks of an unfamiliar situation. Anxiety can also make you aware of potential danger.
Problems arise when anxiety becomes your constant companion. When you are constantly overcome with anxiety, you may find yourself unable to perform necessary activities of daily living such as going out in public or dealing with your responsibilities such as bills and home and personal care.
If you find that you are struggling to overcome anxiety throughout each and every day, it's very important to put your anxiety into perspective and learn some techniques to get runaway anxiety under control. In this article, we present a collection of smart tips to help you recognize and manage unhealthy anxiety naturally. Read on to learn more.
Take Good Care of Yourself
Keep your body healthy by eating well. If you are suffering from a low blood sugar level or filling your system with processed foods consisting mostly of preservatives, artificial colorings and flavorings and very little nourishment, you may simply feel anxious because you are unwell.
Eat a balanced diet consisting of about half high quality proteins, a quarter complex carbohydrates and a quarter fresh fruits and veggies. Eat 5 to 6 small meals a day rather than 3 large ones.
Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages. Even though relaxing with a glass of wine or tossing back a shot of whiskey may help you to feel calm in the moment, the fact is drinking alcohol does not actually help resolve anxiety.
You may feel calm briefly, but when the alcohol wears off you will surely find yourself that much more anxious. This behavior can develop into a vicious circle that quickly spirals down into alcoholism.
In addition to avoiding drinking alcohol, you should also avoid caffeinated beverages. While caffeine can give you a pick-me-up if you're tired, it can also make you much more anxious if you're nervous.
Caffeine has always been associated with jitteriness and nerves, and if you have an anxiety disorder drinking coffee, very strong tea or an “energy” drink will only make it worse. Furthermore, if you have a panic disorder, caffeine may actually trigger a panic attack.
The association between caffeine and anxiety is so strong that you may find simply eliminating caffeine from your everyday life will have a tremendous impact on your symptoms of anxiety. A study conducted into caffeine's neuropsychiatric effects found that very often psychiatric patients who had been diagnosed with problems as severe as eating disorders, sleep disorders and even psychosis experienced relief from their systems symptoms when caffeine was eliminated from the diet.
A note of caution, if you currently drink quite a bit of caffeine, don't quit cold turkey. Gradually wean yourself off caffeine to avoid withdrawal symptoms. Anytime you are thinking of drinking an alcoholic or caffeinated beverage, try drinking a glass of water first.
Remember that drinking plenty of water can actually help you feel calmer. Every function of our bodies is dependent upon excellent hydration. Be sure to drink lots of pure, filtered water every day.
If you don't smoke, don't start. If you do smoke, do everything in your power to stop. Smoking to calm your nerves is very much like drinking to calm your nerves. It may have an immediate, temporary effect but when that effect wears off you may find yourself more anxious than ever before.
According to the national Institute of health, the longer you've been smoking the more likely you are to experience debilitating anxiety; however, it's never too late to stop and reap the benefits of smoke-free lungs.
Additionally, smoking is an extraordinarily expensive habit, and if you are anxious about your money situation smoking will not help you a bit.
Activity can banish anxiety. Staying in good physical health is a great way to quell anxiety, build your strength and brighten your outlook. Be sure to get at least twenty minutes of light-to-moderate exercise every day to help calm your nerves and give your brain a break from the day-to-day stressors that often contribute greatly to anxiety.
If you suffer from insomnia, take great care to establish a steady, predictable sleep schedule. Don't allow yourself to take unplanned naps, and don't do anything in bed other than sleeping (or being intimate with your partner). Keep all tech (laptop, tablet, cell phone and even TV) out of the bedroom.
Keep your bedroom cool and dark and go to bed at the same time every night. Before you lay your head on your pillow, think about any concerns you may have and write them down. The act of putting them physically in place will help you let go of them before you go to sleep.
Be sure not to smoke, drink coffee or alcohol or consume large meals before you sleep.
Taking up meditation can be extremely helpful in quelling anxiety. Ideally, half an hour of meditation a day allows you to center yourself. Use that list of worries to help you focus.
Giving yourself a half an hour to sit quietly and calmly, breathe deeply and simply allow your mind to float freely will help you resolve any problems you may be having. This can go far toward helping you release anxiety.
If you're not able to sit for a full 30 minutes daily, do what you can. Even five minutes of quiet and calm can work wonders in alleviating anxiety.
Breathing deeply is a great way to help resolve symptoms of a panic attack and anxiety. Practice deep breathing when you meditate and throughout the day.
Whenever you feel anxious, angry or nervous, try counting backwards from ten, all the while breathing deeply. This can help reason relieve anxiety and calm your nerves.
Use essential oils!
Essential oils are far more than just scents. They've been proven to help calm the nerves, induce good sleep and deep relaxation. At home, you can use essential oils to give yourself a luxurious spa treatment by soaking in a warm bath or using a diffuser.
The right choices and essential oils can also help to lighten your mood and even reduce high blood pressure and tachycardia. There are many different essential oils that can help calm your nerves. Of these, oil of lavender is probably the easiest to find and the best one to carry with you throughout the day.
Throughout the day, you can combine deep breathing with aromatherapy. Carry a little bottle of lavender essential oil in your pocket or purse. If you feel anxious, simply shake half a dozen drops into the palm of your hand, rub your palms together, cup your hands over your nose and breathe deeply. The lavender will calm your nerves and help you focus.
Have a cup of tea!
Herbal tea can also be very helpful and calm your nerves. The classic is chamomile tea. This old-fashioned nerve tonic can also help settle your tummy and may even help you to sleep better.
Recent studies have shown that it's not just the act of relaxing with a warm cup of tea that is helpful. One study found that participants who took German chamomile in 220 mg capsules 1 to 5 times a day showed verifiably reduced anxiety symptoms.
One very good relaxing tea is Celestial Seasons’ Tension Tamer which combines chamomile, valerian and several other calming herbs.
Change your mind!
These simple, natural ideas can make a big difference in your anxiety level. Give the suggestions presented here a try for a week or two. You may very well find that you're able to get your anxiety under control. If it continues to be a problem, talk with your doctor for great ideas and referrals to help you live anxiety free.