Anxiety is a nasty little feeling that can creep up on us when we least expect it. Everyone experiences anxiety, to some degree, at some point in their lives. Others endure it on a weekly, if not daily, basis. I’ve struggled with paralyzing anxiety since undergrad. It has become a large part of my life and I continue to search for holistic remedies to ease the symptoms. Every body is different, but I want to share what has worked for me. I’m hoping some of these tips can work for you as well! Remember, we are in this together!
1 | Essential Oils
Two Christmases ago I unwrapped a diffuser and box of assorted essential oils. I was super skeptical when I first opened it and probably made one of those ‘thank-you-so-much-but-I’ll-never-use-this’ faces. However, a few nights later I filled my diffuser with water and 8 drops of lavender essential oils and drifted into a deep sleep. I had one of the most calming sleeps in months. Today, I continue to use my diffuser 3-4 times a week and on particularly anxious nights I will add a couple drops of lavender oil to my pillow for added relaxation. Seriously, if you haven’t already – you must try this amazing combo!
2 | Clean Eating
If you are consuming processed and fried foods on the regular – your gut won’t be happy. Unhappy gut = unhappy mind. Plain and simple. I notice a huge decline in my anxiety levels when practising clean eating. While eating clean 24/7 is ideal, it isn’t realistic. However, you can make small changes in your daily routine to improve your eating habits. Drinking more water, cutting out dairy in your morning coffee and cutting out soda are game changers. Try to limit the amount of fast food you consume, and instead make more home cooked meals. Your gut (and mind) will thank you later!
3 | Yoga
If you’re like me and would rather not sweat it out at the gym, yoga is a great alternative. The effectiveness of yoga is often downplayed. Not only is it great for your body, it cleanses your mind. If you’re new to yoga, try a beginner level course or restorative yoga. Restorative yoga focuses on breathing techniques and stretching – which is basically like giving your body a big hug. You’ll feel revitalized afterwards and find your anxiety levels at bay.
4 | Meditation
I’ve recently tapped into the magic of meditation. Meditation is the art of relaxation. Meditation teaches you to clear your mind of all your worries and focus on your breath. I like to put on soothing music or background noise (I love thunderstorms!) while practising. If you’re on the hunt for the perfect meditation guide, YouTube has plenty of meditation audio tracks that will leave you feeling refreshed. I usually stick with meditation tracks at the 10 minute mark – so I can clear my mind, but not exhaust myself to the point of falling asleep!
5 | Deep Tissue Massages
If you’re experiencing a higher volume of anxiety than normal, consider getting a deep tissue massage. When you experience prolonged anxiety, your muscles will tighten, leaving your body in a state of stress. Deep tissue massages focus on relieving pressure and soreness from chronic tension. I try to get a deep tissue massage every 1-2 months to “reset” my body. Many insurance companies will cover a portion of massages, so make sure to check with yours! You can also invest in a spa membership to receive massages at a discounted rate!
6 | Green Tea
Ahh, green tea. Not only does drinking green tea give you that “cozy” feeling, it is also loaded with antioxidants and nutrients which help to restore the body. There is something about unwinding from the day in bed with a green tea. If your stomach is sore from the side effects of anxiety, green tea helps to soothe it. I’ve found it helps to relieve anxiety. At the very least, it’s great for your body!
7 | Tracking Your Progress
It’s easy to feel hopeless when anxiety is taking over your life. Tracking your progress can be an easy method to recognizing improvement! I’ve recently discovered the Spire Mindfulness + Activity Tracker, which is basically an electronic diary for your mental (and physical) health. This activity trackers measures calories, tracks steps and even records breathing patterns! This device acts as your personal trainer as it tracks your routine, including periods of tension, calm and focus. Spire’s platform learns to anticipate stressful events before they are likely to happen and even alert users with actionable insights on how to prepare and experience more calm in their life! Amazing right?! This device is smaller than a tube of lipstick and clips onto your clothing discreetly!
8 | A Support System
If you struggle with anxiety you are not alone. However, you may have feelings of loneliness. It’s important to surround yourself with family and friends who understand your anxiety and can help to uplift you. It is more important than ever to build a strong support system that has your back when you’re experiencing anxiety. There are also online support groups for those who suffer from anxiety. Just remember – you are not alone in this!
I hope y’all learned some new techniques to help soothe anxiety. It’s important to remember, if the anxiety you are experiencing is interfering with your daily activities (work, school, relationships) you need to see a doctor. You need to push your pride to the side. The truth is, there is absolutely nothing wrong with asking for help. In fact, that shows how strong you are.
How do you relieve daily stress or anxiety?
Thank you to Spire for sponsoring today’s discussion. As always, all opinions are my own.