Calm Down! 5 Techniques to Reduce Anxiety

Worry, fear, panic, insomnia, and fatigue.

These are all common symptoms of anxiety. Other symptoms people may experience include irrational thoughts, muscle tension and nausea. While anxiety is a natural reaction and we cannot eliminate it, there are techniques you can learn to reduce the symptoms and live a less anxious life.

Exercise
Exercise is one of the best ways to manage your anxiety. Not only does it help work out the stress, but it naturally increases the levels serotonin and dopamine in our brains. Try exercising for 30 minutes a day.

Deep Breathing
Deep breathing techniques can help reduce the physical symptoms of anxiety such as heart palpitations. It can also help slow down the racing thoughts in your brain. Try inhaling for a count of 5, holding for a count of 5, and exhaling for a count of 5.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation and Meditation
This technique helps slow your body down. You will want to find a quiet place where you can either lie down or sit comfortably. A good way to start learning this technique is through a guide either in person or through a recording. If you would like to try this I suggest downloading an application on your phone such as Insight Timer – https://insighttimer.com/.

Limit Caffeine and Alcohol
Both of these are mood-altering substances and can increase levels of anxiety as well as depression.

Get Adequate Sleep
While insomnia is common for people who have anxiety, it is important to try to get the recommended amount of sleep. Lack of sleep will also increase anxiety. Try a deep breathing or muscle relaxation exercise to help you relax before trying to go to bed.

Coloring
Adult coloring books have been proven to reduce stress and anxiety. Give them a try and have a little fun and make something beautiful. Here is a link to an affordable and popular coloring book for adults – http://www.amazon.com/Adult-Coloring-Book-Relieving-Patterns/dp/1941325122/ref=zg_bs_books_9.

Acceptance
Adverse feelings such as anxiety are normal. You’re not alone. The goal is not to eliminate the feelings rather to learn how to manage them.

These techniques done in conjunction with therapy can help you learn your best practices for coping with your anxiety. You may also want to consider talking with your doctor about medications that can help with the physical symptoms.