Could you use some tips for reducing anxiety? It’s one of the most goggled topics today. Anxiety and how to reduce it. We’re all anxious and it’s funny because the more technology that’s developed to ease our lifestyles, the more anxious we’ve become. It’s not just technology that is to blame; there are a lot of pressures on us, on parents, on teachers, on teens and on kids. How to go about reducing anxiety? Of course we need to first look at the source. Some anxiety can be self-induced but more often than not there are external forces at play such as tension in the home, relationship problems, over scheduling, peer pressure, school pressure and so forth. It may be worth your time to take a step back and really assess what is going on. If you need assistance, a good therapist or social worker can be of tremendous help in getting down to the cause and helping you chart your way to a more balanced outlook on things. With that said, there are some strategies that can be helpful.
Exercise: Make sure you are getting plenty of movement and exercise on a daily basis. A 20-minute walk, a bike ride, an exercise class or a jog will get your heart rate up and your adrenaline pumping. Releasing endorphins will be a positive side effect of a great exercise schedule and honestly, exercise is the number one go to treatment for anxiety.
Breathing: Deep breathing, Yoga, playing a wind instrument, singing and blowing bubbles all can increase respiration and induce calm. By regulating your breathing pattern, you can literally blow off some hot steam and change the chemistry in your body.
Nutrition: Getting proper nutrition is crucial to keeping anxiety at bay. Foods that raise and lower blood sugars will inherently cause more mood swings and incite anxiety. Be sure you are taking a close look at your daily diet including your snack plan.
Sensory Diet: Are you getting a proper sensory diet? It may be time to consult your local occupational therapist to be sure all your senses are getting the proper “nutrition” such as good lighting, quality sound, soothing textures and a good dose of aromatherapy. A great sensory diet can be as important as a healthy food diet.
Creative Outlet: Where does your soul go when you’re alone? What’s your creative outlet? Don’t’ have one? Sure you do. Try cooking? Writing? Drawing? Art? Woodworking? You don’t have to over schedule yourself, but perhaps there’s a class at the local library or art center just to get you started.
Pet Therapy: Fido can be the best cure for an over stressed individual. Pets can lower your blood pressure and provide unconditional love and attention. Don’t love dogs or cats? Try a lizard, bird, or Guinea Pig?
Structure: Make sure you have a good system of structure put into place whether it is a daily schedule, visual reminders, a timer or an alarm clock. Good structure can relieve a lot of stress related to scheduling. A dry erase board is a great place to keep a schedule visible for everyone to use.
Play!: We all need to find a happy place and play is not just for children. Teens, adults and seniors need and crave play. It provides a sense of joy, encourages creativity, and gives our stressed out minds a break from our daily woes.
So whether you use these tips for yourself or someone you know who is overly anxious, try one or two strategies to implement so you can see how each one effects mood, personality, and your goal in reducing anxiety.