How to deal with anxiety and stress
With everything that’s been going on in the world lately, it’s natural to to feel the mental toll of the uncertainty and stress starting to build.
These past few months been one of the one of the craziest and possibly most stressful periods in our lives and during modern history.
We’ve been asked to maintain “social distancing” – the act of self-isolating, and staying inside one’s own home while limiting human contact with others to an absolute bare minimum. Which is completely unnatural for our social species.
Aside from the intense feelings that isolation causes, the pandemic itself brings feelings of anxiety, fear, and uncertainty as we feel completely helpless but to watch the series of events that unfold before us.
While we can’t control what’s happening in the world or how others react to it, we can control our own thoughts and how we function during this time.
Learning to deal with the anxiety surrounding our current situation is no easy task. But there are coping mechanisms to help you in curbing and relieving feelings of anxiety.
Today I thought I would share some tips, tricks and helpful methods that I use myself on how to relieve anxiety naturally and assist you to get through our current world crisis.
7 Ways to Deal with Anxiety and Stress
Exercise is one of the best ways to deal with anxiety and depression. It allows you to burn off anxious energy, as well as pass the time while providing great benefits for your health.
Doing regular workouts can help to relieve anxiety, elevate and stabilize mood, support sleep, and improve self-esteem.
Even five minutes of aerobic exercise can stimulate anti-anxiety effects, as it allows your body to release endorphins, which can turn around the worst of moods.
I’ve found doing a 30 minute HIIT morning workout lifts my mood for the whole day. And there are so many great at home options for doing workouts these days from videos on YouTube to apps on your phone.
Read more on fitness:
2. Eating Healthy and Managing your Diet
Another effective and natural way to deal with anxiety is by managing your diet.
A well-balanced diet with adequate fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and healthy fats is one of the most effective methods to naturally dealing with anxiety and stress.
According to Harvard Medical School, one way to use food to reduce anxiety is to keep blood sugar as stable as possible by replacing simple sugars with complex carbohydrates, which metabolize slowly so that your sugar levels won’t spike.
It’s also important to drink plenty of water and limit caffeine and alcohol, both of which can trigger anxiety.
Adding mineral supplements like zinc and magnesium to you diet can be helpful too. Studies have shown that they known to support our bodies as they deal with stress and help to relieve anxiety.
Read more on nutrition and food:
- Break Your Sugar Addiction: A 4-Step Plan to Stop Sugar Cravings
- The Busy Girl’s Guide to Vitamins and Nutrition
- 12 Easy Low-Sugar Breakfast Recipes to Start Your Day Off Right
- 8 Easy Ways to Boost Your Immune System Naturally
Meditation has become another popular way to help cope with anxiety naturally. I’ve been meditating for about 2 years now, and honestly it’s been a real life changer for me.
Over time, meditation has allowed me to learn to catch myself before I dive down a wormhole of anxious thoughts. And on a day-to-day basis I feel like I have more control over my basic thoughts and feelings.
Practicing meditation on a regular basis can help calm racing thoughts, making it easier to deal with anxiety and stress.
There are a wide range of meditation styles, including mindfulness and meditation during yoga, that can help to relieve anxiety, so you can try to find a method that works for you.
I personally use the Calm app, and love their daily mediations that also provide a little life lesson in each session. If you’re interested they have a free trial as well!
Journalling is another natural way to deal anxiety and stress.
Taking time to journal is one of the most effective acts of self care. It allows you to find a way to express anxiety can make it feel more manageable.
Labeling emotions and acknowledging traumatic events are both natural outcomes of journaling, and have a known positive effect on people.
I’ve taken up journalling myself and have made part of my daily morning routine. I find it helps to prepare me for the day and put me in the right mindset to accomplish my tasks.
If you don’t really know where to start, it can be as simple as writing 3 things you’re grateful for every day or just how you’re feeling in that moment.
5. Getting Enough Sleep
Anxiety and stress can be aggravated when you’re not getting enough sleep and/or good quality of sleep.
Sleep recharges your brain and boosts your mood and focus. And the result is you’re less likely to feel anxious if you get enough of it.
Having a regular sleep schedule can help to make sure you’re getting your adequate sleep time. Try to go to bed around the same time every night and allow yourself 6-8 hours of sleep every night.
Create a wind down routine before bed that includes relaxing activities like reading or journalling. Also try to minimize screen time on your phone and laptop.
Try to also avoiding caffeine, large meals, and nicotine before bedtime, so your body can be a restful state of mind.
A few sleep aids I love are the This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray, which is relaxing lavender pillow spray helps to reduce anxiety and improve sleep quality. And taking some melatonin supplements to help me drift off.
Read more on sleep:
6. Get Plants for Your Home
Being surrounded by nature is a proven way to help you feel less anxious, angry, or stressed.
Since going out isn’t the easiest at this time, you can bring a little greenery into your home by bringing a house plant or two into your home.
And now before you think this is just another millennial trend, studies have shown that caring for plants actually reduce stress and anxiety and promote comfortable, soothed, and natural feelings.
In addition, plants can improve the quality of air. This in turn improves the quality of your health as a whole – including your anxiety and stress.
I have a small plant collection, and it brings me such joy to see when one of my plants produces a leaf or I see a new bud one of my orchids. It’s such a simple thing, but brings a little a sense of calm and relief whenever I’ve having a stressful day.
7. Time Management
Now that our schedules are less restricted, our days are a little more fluid which can result in some extra time to ruminate over thoughts.
Building a regular schedule and daily routine can help you manage your anxiety and stress along with helping to be more productive.
Check out an example of my current day schedule in this post on Healthy Habits for Working from Home.
Read more from wellness and health:
- 5 Morning Habits to Start Your Day Right
- 12 Easy Things You Can Do to Today Improve Your Health
- 8 Self-Care Products to Help You Be Your Best Self
- How Changing My Perspective Made Me a Happier Person
- Five Resolutions Everyone Can Make For A Better Year
Hope you find this post helpful in learning how to deal with anxiety and stress during this time. If you have any natural coping mechanisms for anxiety and stress you use yourself, please let me know in the comments below!
Please stay stay and healthy during this time!