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How to ease your anxiety in even the most difficult times

How to ease your anxiety

Anxiety. The single word itself might describe the entire day for you. Anxiety is a feeling of uneasiness and fear that can linger in your mind and grow over time, zapping your life of happiness and calmness. However, there are many things you can do to combat what seems like a plague that continually affects your life. Don’t let another 24 hours go by with worry; instead, start to use these tips for how to ease your anxiety that take only minutes in your day.

As hard as it can be to face anxiety, it’s far better to do so than to run away from it. Otherwise, if you don’t get to the root of the worry, anxiety will only bother you more.

So, how do you start?

Get out of the house

Research shows that going out to do activities in nature is a healthy way to reduce anxiety and many other negative emotions. And, no, that doesn’t have to mean going out on a wildnerness retreat.

Instead, it could be as simple as doing anything you would normally do inside your home somewhere outside. Even if it’s only for a few minutes.

It takes as little as five minutes outside for nature to start boosting your mood. Take advantage of opportunities to visit a green space as often as possible.

There are many everyday activities that you can take outside:

  • Eating lunch 
  • Browsing the web on a mobile device
  • Exercising

A bonus component of taking these types of activities outdoors is that you’re not isolating yourself inside the house. And that brings the next point…

Make an effort to stay social

In addition to not isolating yourself physically, don’t isolate yourself socially either. Reach out to friends and talk to others.

Face-to-face conversation is the best but even phone calls or text messages are good alternatives.

What’s great about these dialogues you’ll have is that they provide an opportunity to talk about what’s going on in your life. In other words, try not to keep everything bottled inside .

Instead, share what’s going on. Not only will the conversation ease you and make you feel more comfortable with yourself, but others can also provide fresh perspectives for how you view things.

Just breathe

Take a deep breath. It sounds simple, right? But I know that when I’m anxious that I often forget to breathe.

But I’m learning to change that as breathing ought to be the first thing to do when anxiety starts to spike. Long, deep breaths can relax your body, helping it calm.

Specifically, proper diaphragmatic breathing provides more oxygen to the brain and stimulates the parasympathetic neverous sytem. All of which brings you closer in connection to body and helps reduce the noisiness of the mind.

As for how exactly to do deep breathing, here are a few quick tips:

  • Keep your shoulders and chest area fairly relaxed
  • Inhale to the count of 4
  • Hold your breath for 2 seconds
  • Then exhale slowly through the mouth until the count of 4.

After 6 to 8 times of repeating this technique, your anxiety levels likely start to feel significantly lower than before. Try calm breathing at minimum twice a day and as many times as necessary.

Meditative practice

Meditating is another activity that may work for you for how to reduce anxiety. Meditating makes you more resilient to stress and helps you tackle your anxiety by finding and resolving the source of it.

Of course, the idea of meditating is not to have a goal; it is about freeing the mind. But it’s really helpful, as I learned from listening to a meditative audio on CD shortly after being diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder.

Below is an example of a short meditation designed to help with letting go of anxiety (a little under 10 minutes in length). Many others are available on YouTube.

A teddy bear can help with how to ease your anxiety

If some matters are too personal for you to speak openly about, you still don’t have to be alone. Shockingly, owning a teddy bear can prove beneficial in anxious moments.

A teddy bear can reduce anxiety by providing comfort and therapeutic effects, even for an adult. Psychologists suggest to touch or hold an object associated with positive feelings and a terrific example of that type of item is a fluffy, cuddly bear.

A final thought on how to ease your anxiety

Accepting anxiety doesn’t mean that you have to like it or continue to suffer silently. Personally, I found speaking with others, including friends, family, and a therapist, was helpful, along with using a meditation audio. Of course, what works for one person doesn’t necessarily suit another person, so try a few things to see what’s best for you.

Learning how to control the anxiety and not let it control you is the goal here. Wishing you all the best.

Christy

53 thoughts on “How to ease your anxiety in even the most difficult times”

  1. Great reminder Christy! I especially like sharing your anxieties with someone. I think keeping your anxieties to yourself is what makes anxiety something thats is so hard to manage.
    Anxiety is your brain having unhelpful thoughts thats are generally not true or over exaggerated. We can’t fight or recognise those unhelpful thoughts on our own with our own brain when we are anxious. If you look the brain when we anxious we are being controlled by the emotional part of our brain and the logic and reason is turned off. We often need someone else to hear our thoughts and help us process them with reason and logic.
    If that is too hard I have even found writing down my thoughts helps me process them better. Even better on a form like a blog where people from all over the world can give advice. Which is why I have started a blog.
    Thanks Again Christy!

    1. Your comment makes so much sense! It’s like the reason switch is off and the emotional switch is on full blast! I’ll be sure to check out your blog. Wonderful to connect!

    2. That was a lightbulb moment for me when I realised that anxiety isn’t just psychological, there is also a physical aspect that goes alone with it. That’s why it feels impossible to over come these anxieties or ‘unhelpful thoughts’, and it doesn’t mean you have failed if you need to see a psychologist or talk to a friend. Its the same as a person that is a paraplegic and needs someone to feed them, your brain needs someone outside of you to help with logic and reasoning because yours isn’t working. A paraplegic wouldn’t be ashamed to ask for help and pointlessly try themselves. So we shouldn’t be ashamed to ask for help and to recognise those moments that we can’t cope on our own.

  2. A profound and insightful post! Enjoyed the following discussion which added depth and breadth! I especially liked the idea of embracing our emotions.

    1. <3 Thank you, Rebecca! Getting in touch with our emotions is not always easy but it's all about mindfulness, right?!

  3. Another wonderful self-help post Christy. Breathing in when in stress mode is a great help. I do it a lot, lol, deep breaths really do help calm the whole nervous system. In those stressful moments I remind myself to breathe and usually notice how much higher my shoulders are with tension. We must keep check on our bodies sometimes to reboot ourselves. :) xoxo <3

    1. I like what you say about the “reboot” of ourselves, Debby. The reminder to breathe is one I do too, especially when I’m writing as I often take shallow breaths rather than deeper ones. I think I get distracted! xxoo (I like you calling me “sweet gal” by the way!)

    2. I do the same. I think we all forget to breathe in properly most of the time. Imagine that, we take oxygen for granted! Lol, yes, deep breaths my friend. And glad you like my pet name for you because that’s just the way I see you sweet gal. <3

  4. NIce one dear Christy… You make some valuable points over here—- I agree with you…
    And yes: I have certain stuffed teddy bear I like to cuddle … and even squeeze when I am feeling worried or needing to “reload” … Ha!… :star: :bear: (His name is Charlie BTW, but I guess you have already guessed it!) Sending much love. Have a great new week! xx :D

    1. Awww <3 I thought of Charlie with this post… However did you know… I think a cutie teddy like that would do wonders for you ~ And he traveled so far to reach you, from my mind to yours :) HUGS

  5. We had just gone to bed when the police notified us our middle son had died. To this day, I hate bedtime and get very anxious as the time nears. My youngest son saw a stuffed elephant at the airport on his way home from college after his brother’s death and brought it home to me. It not only helped me get through the funeral, but I slept with it every night for several years. Now I only do that if I am having a particularly rough night. Elephants work, too!

    1. Oh Michelle.. thank you for sharing that <3 An elephant works too, yes! You are a genuine woman I am proud to call my friend xx

  6. insight07blog

    I think it was a smart idea to pick anxiety because anxiety is like a termite. It eats you up before you even come to know of it.
    so thanks a lot for adressing this issue.

  7. Another breathing exercise:-
    1. With every exhale let your body relax and soften.
    2. After a while imagine a grey wall in your mind upon which all thoughts and images appear. With every exhale let the wall collapse until your mind is tranquil.
    3. Then, let every exhale fall out of your body as a sigh of relief. Continue until calm.
    4. Sometimes you might wonder at what triggered the nervous state. Sometimes it is something that seems quite innocuous but touches a nerve.

    The antidote for severe anxiety is sheer bloody-minded defiance but handle with care. For example; “How dare this/that /he/she do this to me. I won’t stand for it.” Again handle with care. :)

    1. Thanks Graham. You’ve laid out this breathing exercise well for us. A great addition to the post! I’m going to have tags made up to wear around our necks that say “handle with care” ;)

    1. Awww teddy bears are adorable and therapeutic, which is a great combination :) Have a nice day Raj

  8. Wonderful tips Christy!
    I find scripture to be really helpful and I have a number I usually read!
    Thanks for sharing your tips!
    ~Tikva~

    1. Yes, I noted recently a scripture post from you. Thanks for your great posts too, Tikva. I am so glad to know you

  9. “To hear the phrase “our only hope” always makes one anxious, because it means that if the only hope doesn’t work, there is nothing left.”

  10. Hi Christy

    I know this may sounds silly to some but when you are feeling worn out and defeated find a huge tree, lean your back into it, do your suggested breathing exercises. You will be amazed at the energy you will draw from the tree. I know years ago after hours of hiking with a backpack I would slip it off and lean into one of my giant friends… It works give it a try…

    Hugs from Alberta

    1. I have to remind myself about the deep breathing as I often get caught up in writing and have shallow breaths.. Great comment here, Rolly! Hugs

    1. Ohhhh my friend calls her cats “fur babies” ;) So glad you have your loving cat :)

  11. This is really great advice! I especially the last part about embrace it because for me my anxiety got a lot better once I learnt my triggers and learnt to accept it. It helps calm you down a lot. If you get anxious about your anxiety it just turns into a vicious cycle and accepting it and learning to deal with it is a much better option!

  12. I love a good walk to get away from it all (2-4 hours) if I can afford the time. Of course, I love alleys, where I can find graffiti art, and hey some of it’s green. Now that it’s spring, I do route myself through parks, but it’s not so much fun in the winter.
    I own 2 Teddy Bears.

    1. I went for a walk last night, so therapeutic… It was down by the water. I enjoyed reading about your experiences too in your comment here, Resa. Awww Teddy Bears are getting your love, they’re so lucky ♥

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