Anxiety is widespread, and it affects one in 13 persons. It manifests differently, sometimes through a panic attack, other times through nervousness in your stomach, shaking hands, overwhelming tensions, beating heart, etc. It causes overwhelming discomfort and can significantly reduce the quality of life of a person.
How can you help yourself? Let’s find out!
But, first, here is some information about the anxiety you should know.
What is Anxiety?
According to the American Psychological Association (APA), anxiety is an emotion of fear and tension, followed by some physical manifestations, such as high blood pressure.
Occasional fear and tensions are normal emotions, but once it becomes too overwhelming and too often, a person is at higher risk of General Anxiety Disorder (GAD).
Here are some of the symptoms of GAD:
- Continuous tensions
- Continuous feelings of fear, uncertainty and irritability
- Problems with sleep and concentration
People who suffer from GAD experience these symptoms to severe levels. It can affect their ability to develop relationships, do their work, and complete everyday tasks.
Types of Anxiety
There are several types of anxiety, including:
- Generalized anxiety disorder – GAD
- Social anxiety disorder
- Selective mutism
- Specific phobia
- Separation anxiety disorder
The first two types are the most common, with a wide range of symptoms.
5 Ways to Reduce Anxiety
The following are simple methods you can practice to ease the feeling of fear and worry.
Skip the Extra Coffee
There is nothing wrong with starting your day with a cup of coffee. Coffee contains caffeine, a stimulant that keeps you awake. But, research shows that too much caffeine increases the feeling of anxiety.
Therefore, you don’t have to give up on coffee, just drink three or fewer coffee cups per day.
Walk it Out
Workouts are excellent for anxiety and have both long-term and short-term positive effects on your mind and body. But, if you feel anxious, you don’t have to grab your fitness equipment and rush to the gym.
A slow walk around the neighborhood will help you feel better and relax your muscles. You can listen to music while you walk to block the outer noise.
Exercising three times per week for half an hour is an optimal workout schedule, but a ten-minute walk when you feel overwhelmed will make an instant difference.
Focus on Something Else
If you feel extensive fear or worry and experience trouble calming down, try to distract yourself and focus on something that will keep your hands busy. It is called a distraction technique and is a simple trick to drive your attention away from your overwhelming feelings.
You can draw, wash your hands, brush your hair, or anything else you can think of.
The technique stops your brain from focusing on thoughts that increase anxiety.
When your emotions and thoughts become unbearable, your breathing changes and your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen which stops you from thinking clearly.
Therefore, it is important to practice a simple breathing technique that will help calm you down, lower the heart rate and stop your blood pressure from going sky high.
When your breathing becomes rapid, close your eyes and slowly take a deep breath through your nose, hold your breath for several seconds, and exhale slowly. Repeat the technique as many times as you need until you feel your vision clears, your hands stop shaking, your heart rate stabilizes and the unbearable feeling decreases.
Dealing with anxiety is challenging. When anxiety strikes, the last thing you are capable of is thinking clearly and helping yourself. Practice the mentioned techniques that are simple to remember and focus on in those moments to feel better.
How do you deal with anxiety? Please share your tips!
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