Did you know that over 40 million people in the United States suffer from anxiety? If you fall into this group, you’re well aware of the debilitating stress that comes with anxiousness. The creeping, crawling sensation of this mental illness taking over your brain is enough to stop even the most disciplined person in their tracks.
Today we want to help people going through this almost unthinkable scenario by giving out tips that will help you cope with anxiety and stress. Our tips encompass everything from the way that you sleep, breathe, and even think.
By the end, you will learn some valuable tips for dealing with the feelings of anxiety and burnout that many of us experience every single day.
Let’s dive in!
Practice Breathing Exercises
First, let’s talk about the importance of breathing exercises as it relates to managing anxiety. The most common breathing trick is called belly-breathing. Essentially, this meditation method requires that you find a peaceful place where you can sit down and focus on your breathing.
Take several normal breathes and stay completely aware of each inhale and exhale. Breathe in through your mouth and out through your nose. Once you settle in, put one hand on your belly and the other on your chest and take slower breathes. We recommend counting to 4 or 5 on each inhale and exhale.
Focus your mind on breathing and try to shut out the extra thoughts that will bombard your mind during this period. Believe it or not, all of these thoughts are still there all day long. The difference is you’re more aware of all of your thoughts because you’re focused on just your breathing.
Don’t get distracted and let your mind wander. Count your breaths and keep this practice up for 10 minutes or longer. The goal is to let go of unnecessary thoughts and hit the metaphorical reset button on your brain. We love the fact that this anxiety-busting tip doesn’t take long to practice and eventually master.
Rework Your Budget
Let’s be honest; money is a significant cause of stress and anxiety among most adults. We are all laser-focused on how we will make ends meet each month, and the idea of not making it is enough to drive anyone insane.
Instead of dwelling on what you can’t accomplish, maybe it’s time to think about the changes you can make to improve your financial situation. For example, if you’re paying $160 for your premium cable service, why not switch to a streaming application like Amazon or Hulu? In many cases, there are free streaming services you can use to bridge the gap between cable and streaming independence.
Now, you’ll spend a total of $30 for two streaming services, and save nearly $130 per month.
The goal is to make these small changes in different areas of your life. Before long, you’ll begin to see an influx of extra money, which you can use to take care of some of the pressing matters that cause you stress.
You can take it a step further and start paying for bills in advance with these extra funds. Imagine being paid for two months of your rent and utilities. Wouldn’t that give you peace of mind and generally reduce your anxiousness?
Adjust Your Sleeping Patterns
One of the biggest causes of anxiety is sleep deprivation. We are all so busy with our jobs, families, side projects, and hobbies that sometimes a full 8 hours of sleep seems impossible. If this sounds familiar, it’s time to rethink the way that you sleep at night.
It’s not easy to adopt a new sleeping pattern. However, lack of sleep is known for increasing your brain’s anticipatory reactions — which is one of the core components that cause stress. Keeping your brain normalized with regular rest can help you reduce your stress levels.
You’ll get the added benefit of waking up sooner too. The earlier you wake up, the more time you have to tackle your tasks throughout the day.
Let’s say you have a job, but want to start your personal blog — where do you find the time? Simply put, most mornings will give you the query and freedom to work on the things you love, which can help you save time and get to bed at a reasonable time.
You can improve your chances of falling asleep at night by shutting off the tv, silencing your work email notifications, and dimming the lights. Technology and bright lights can distract your brain and make it harder to fall asleep.
Work Through Negative Thoughts
Finally, it’s vital that you work through your negative thoughts. At first, this advice sounds simple, but think about what you feel when stressed. Odds are, you’re having tons of negative thoughts that are holding you back from reaching your full potential.
You have to realize at some point that the negative thoughts and emotions you have don’t reflect reality.
Imagine if you woke up every morning and felt like a complete failure. There’s a chance that some of you do feel that way. If you have a family that loves you, pets, pride, a job, people who look up to you, or absolutely anything that means something to you, you’re not a failure. Your brain automatically goes to that default, but the reality suggests something much different.
The quicker you can recognize your bad thoughts and work through them until they match reality, the more likely you are to fight this common and crippling mental illness. If you ever feel like you need help or someone to talk to, there’s always someone willing to listen. Don’t let stress get the best of you because you’re better than this, and you will overcome the challenges ahead.