There are millions of people who struggle with anxiety, myself included. There are times where it shows up as just nervousness, but then there are times where I could just be sitting there and begin to feel an upset stomach. And it doesn’t just show up as an upset stomach, it shows up as a tense jaw and shaking. Then there are other times it shows up as an inability to sit still or fidgeting.
Does any of that sound familiar? Yeah. I figured that.
So what are some of the thing I do to help ease my anxiety?
Here are some of the things I do:
Drink hot tea: I’m a big tea drinker. Always have been. I love iced tea, especially sweet tea. I never really found hot tea appealing. That is, until I found the right tea and the right sweetener. My personal favorite is lemon zinger tea by Celestial Seasonings* with honey as my personal sweetener. Once I tried it, I was hooked. Hot tea can be so relaxing in the evening.
Yoga: Yoga is a fantastic tool to use for anxiety; one tool in particular are various breathing techniques. I’ve even made a video on stress and anxiety pranayama. Here are the three techniques I demonstrated in that video.
Alternate nostril breathing (Anuloma-Viloma Nadishodhana): This technique can help with relaxation and energy stimulation. Place your dominate hand over your face with two fingers on your forehead. Gently close your nostrils, alternating between your thumb and ring finger.
Gently close the right nostril, inhale through the left nostril. Hold the breath as you gently close your left nostril and open the right. Exhale through the right nostril.
Inhale through the right, hold the breath as your gently close the right and open the left. Exhale through the left nostril.
Repeat 8-12 times or as needed.
Three part breathing (Dirga): This technique can help calm the mind, help with grounding, and reduce anxiety. Place hands on lower abdomen. Inhale through the nose, inflating lower abdomen. Exhale. Place hands on the sides of the rib cage. Inhale through the nose, expanding ribs out to the sides. Exhale. Place the hands on the upper chest. Inhale, lifting the upper chest, filling up the top of your lungs. Exhale. Place one hand on the chest and the other on the abdomen. Inhale filling up the belly first, then the sides of the rib, followed by the upper chest. Exhale, emptying the upper chest, sides of the ribs, then followed by the belly.
Repeat 10 times or as necessary.
Ocean breath (Ujjayi): This technique is more about the exhale than the inhale. Inhale through your nose. When you exhale, breathe out as though you’re trying to fog up a window. The exception is that when you do it with your mouth closed.
Walking: Walking is a great stress reliever for me. Whenever I get anxious, I get stressed. The motion of walking helps me to feel better. Sometimes it simple helps just to breathe fresh air and move your body.
Conversation: Whenever I get anxious, I tend to overthink and can close up at times. The longer I put off talking about it, the worse it can get. But if I talk about it, get it out in the open, I tend to feel better. Not only that, but whenever I talk about it, whoever I’m talking to, usually my husband, helps me to see things from a different perspective. You see, whenever I’m in this state of anxiousness, it can be difficult to see the bigger picture or to see things in an alternate way because my mind is stuck. I’m sure many others deal with this as well.
Studies have shown that petting a dog (or cat) reduces stress. I have three dogs, so plenty of opportunities to pet them. One is particularly keen on cuddling.
I hope this article helped you think outside the box when it comes to how you deal with anxiety. If you tend to have severe anxiety or panic attacks, it may be useful to talk to a professional. There’s no shame in seeking out professional help or taking medications to ease your anxiety. We all need helps sometimes.
*CYM is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.