For those of us prone to anxiety, we know how it can affect the quality of our lives. Even when we have it pretty together most of the time, situational anxiety can kick us in the you know what if we let it (think of days when you have an important exam, presentation, job interview, first date with your huge crush, etc.).
We don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars on therapy or medication to get a handle on anxiety. Follow these five easy tips, and you will be centered and ready to take on whatever comes your way. Ready?
1. Work on your breathing.
When you are stressed (sitting in a traffic jam is a good time to practice this), simply breathe in deeply and slowly breathe out. Do this five times. You will feel better very quickly. For more ideas on breathing for stress relief, visit HelpGuide.Org’s Relaxation Techniques for Stress Relief.
2. Take a walk.
It is amazing how a simple walk around the block, in a nearby park or beach can make you feel better, within minutes. If you are at work, keep a pair of sneakers in your car or office and opt to walk during your lunch time.
3. Fake it till you make it and act as if.
Whether it is going into that meeting with your boss to ask for a raise or getting ready for that first date: picture yourself already getting that raise or having an incredible time with your date. You are successful, charming, and sexy (look out, world)! See yourself in the mirror and affirm all the good things that you are about. Even if you feel stuck and don’t believe it yet, put a smile on and fake it till you make it. This really works!
4. Be active during the day.
Our minds will have less of a chance to stir up anxious thoughts if we are busy during the day and tired at night. Work out. Do purposeful work. Spend quality time with people you care about. At bedtime, your mind will only have room and time to be at peace. The anxious monkey mind will not stand a chance!
5. Turn the focus away from yourself and help others.
For many of us prone to anxiety, it is very helpful to get our attention off of ourselves. When you are putting your energy on helping someone else, loving someone else, or serving someone else (or a cause greater than yourself), you will not be focused on yourself and what you think is troubling you.
That’s it. Here’s to living a centered and peaceful life. When things come up to ruffle your feathers (and they will), know that you have the tools and power to stay calm in the midst of the storm.Debra struggled with anxiety and insomnia for many years. About five years ago, she started a blog, The Warm Milk Journal, as a way to reach out to others who may be having the same struggles. The Warm Milk Journal has become a popular resource for people in need of a good night sleep and recently won Success Magazine's BlogStar award. Debra holds degrees in communications, law, and education. When she is not blogging she is a social media specialist for a large automotive group company in the Jacksonville, Florida area. When not working, you may find Debra walking on the beach or sweating it out at a nearby Bikram studio.
Main Photo Credit: Photographee.eu/shutterstock.com; Second Photo Credit: dean bertoncelj/shutterstock.com; Third Photo Credit: GaudiLab/shutterstock.com