Anxiety can be a damning state. Often unavoidable and easily triggered, managing anxiety can be an extreme effort in itself. Whether you suffer from social anxiety, chronic anxiety or stress-related anxiety, no two situations are exactly alike.
Overwhelming situations, lack of sleep, stress and overthinking can all lead to a cognitive decline that signals the start of something darker, and often far less controllable.
Thankfully, there are natural ways to reduce the symptoms of anxiety and aid in how your body processes the feeling of anxiety, as well as helpful tricks to stop anxiety attacks in their tracks.
Whilst different tips will work for different people, incorporating one, a few, or even all of these tips will help you manage anxiety naturally.
Stop drop and roll
Whilst not asking you to physically stop, drop and roll, sometimes removing yourself from a stressful situation or attempting to distract yourself is the easiest way to stop an anxiety attack in its tracks.
Change your surroundings. Look at pictures of your dream holiday, watch funny videos on youtube, take your dog (or someone else’s dog) for a walk – or just go for a walk.
This is the best way to force your mind to wander from the state it’s in and help you snap out of what can turn into a terrifying situation.
Overstimulation does NOT help when it comes to managing anxiety. Caffeine increases adrenaline in your body and stimulates the very hormone you are trying to decrease.
Swap out your cup of joe for a soothing herbal cup of tea or a delicious and soothing chai filled with warming spices to help your mind wander.
Invest in herbs
Herbs that are present in natural solutions like ‘Rescue Remedy’ do wonders at helping your body, and your mind, relax.
Try passionflower, St. John’s wort, kawa, chamomile and damiana. Stress can also be combatted with herbs such as Licorice, Siberian ginseng, withania and rhodiola.
Snack attack not panic attack
Eating small meals often can do wonders for stabilising your mood. Try eating smaller portions every 2-3 hours with foods that contain protein, or other foods that can help manage the affects of anxiety here.
Whilst it is easy to think that you are about to suffocate to death, your body will never let that happen.
Little pointers to remind yourself of this are helpful when you are grasping for air and feel like your lungs are closing down.
Repeat mantras like “I’m always ok, I can breathe, I will be fine” are more helpful than you realise.
Phone a friend
If you feel yourself falling into the trap of anxiety, phone someone who either understands the situation you are in or knows how to calm you down.
Whether that be a partner, a parent or a friend, sometimes just hearing somebody else’s voice is enough to snap your mind out of its dangerous wanderings.
Even if they are not there physically, sometimes just being understood, goes a long way in calming your mind and reducing anxiety.
Cocooning or pressure points
Making your mind aware of your body and bringing your conscious to other things is quite helpful in centring your body and reducing overwhelming feelings.
Place your hands on either side of your head and gently press your eyelids closed.
Alternatively, press on your pressure points. Effective places include the fingertips and the muscles directly underneath the collarbone.
Place your fingertips under the collarbone and push with enough pressure to bring your attention to the area.
By actively addressing your body you are helping your mind let go and relax.