Even without a formal diagnosis, anxiety is one of the most common issues adults worldwide face each day. In fact, it is so prevalent that approximately 70% of adults in the United States self-reported a feeling of stress or anxiety daily.
While all of us may feel anxiety in our day-to-day lives, however, the trick is making sure that it doesn’t overwhelm us and stop us from living our regular lives. There are times that the anxiety can feel like it’s overwhelming, and it can seem difficult to even make yourself get out of bed – I understand, and I’ve been there.
It is in those moments – and all the other, everyday moments in which the anxiety feels like it’s too much – that it is important you know how to reduce the feeling.
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One of the most common manifestations of anxiety is fixating on the worst possible case scenario that could happen. If you feel like you’re developing a matching system, one effective way to bring yourself out of the mental maze that your anxiety has built is to check the facts about the thing you’re anxious about.
For example, you feel anxious about the possibility of a shark attack when you’re at the beach. However, fact-checking can help you discover whether or not sharks even live in your part of the world. Getting into the habit of double-checking things that can trigger your anxiety can also help train your brain to deal with difficult thoughts in a rational way.
- Try the 3-3-3 Rule
If you feel like your mind is rebelling against you and going a thousand miles an hour, just stop, take a deep breath, and relax. Once you feel a bit better, look around, and tell me three things you hear, three things you hear, and move three parts of your body. This will help you break free from the anxious thoughts and allow you to focus on the task you were working on.
It may seem at cross-purposes, but stressing out your body physically can actually help you feel better mentally. Regular exercise helps release endorphins, which lower anxiety. Additionally, it also helps improve the quality of your sleep, another important factor in helping you feel less stressed and anxious. Exercise doesn’t need to be particularly strenuous to be effective. In fact, repetitive exercises, like walking or jogging, can be among the most stress relieving.
Have you ever caught the scent of something you like and felt better? That’s because scents can be particularly effective in helping your mind feel more relaxed. You can use scented candles or essential oils in order to relieve your anxiety. While any scent you like should work, some scents, such as lavender, rose, and sandalwood, are particularly effective at reducing anxiety.
For many of us, stress and anxiety are an inevitable part of our work and personal lives. However, this doesn’t mean that we should simply grin and bear it, and I hope these tips help you manage your mental health better!