Don’t Let Anxiety Take Over
These are anxious times. We are all feeling the effects of quarantine right now, and it’s very difficult to know how to cope with anxiety sometimes. I know I seem like I have it all together, but my anxiety often gets the best of me.
I know it seems hard at times like this to manage your anxiety, but even by committing yourself to these tips, you will feel your anxiety improve. This post will give you 10 important tools you need for controlling and minimizing your anxiety. You don’t have to live with constant fear and stress.
#1 | Stick With The Facts
There is no need to fall into that Google wormhole of unreliable information and sensationalized facts. There is so much information out there these days it is impossible to know what is reliable. You need to stick to a few reliable sources. I recommend the CDC (Centre for Disease Control), or the WHO (World Health Organization).
#2 | Don’t Read So Much News
The more you are on your phone reading the news, the more anxious, nervous, and scared you will get. Remember, bad news gets clicks, so the more you look the more dread you may feel. Limit your news and limit your exposure to this bad stuff. You will find you won’t feel as bad if you aren’t constantly exposed to bad information.
#3 | Exercise
I know it can seem like exercise is a low priority in these times, but this can’t actually be further from the truth. Even if it’s a simple at-home workout, you’ll be surprised at the difference it makes to your anxiety and mental health. It also helps you sleep, which is an extra bonus.
There are tons of at-home workouts which are readily available on YouTube. Many of them are based on body weight techniques, so you don’t even need equipment to get going. Exercise is proven to release brain chemicals that help you feel good (to put it in simple terms), and its effects on your physical health are obvious as well.
#4 | Watch Something
If you can’t take your mind off your negative thoughts, try watching a really engrossing movie or TV show. Something that really makes you think, so that you can get your mind off all those bad thoughts. The more complicated, the better distraction it provides, and make sure you enjoy it too!
#5 | Do Your Part
If you’re doing your part, you’ll feel more in control of this situation. This means following all of the CDC’s recommended guidelines. Wash your hands, don’t touch your face, disinfect commonly used surfaces, keep a social distance from people, don’t travel unnecessarily, and don’t attend any large gatherings. Not only does this minimize your risk, but it also helps you feel on top of this situation.
#6 | FaceTime People
Social distancing doesn’t mean we can’t talk to each other. We’ll all be at home, but we can still connect. Connecting virtually will help you feel less alone and more loved. So whether it is FaceTime, Zoom, chat, or picking up the phone, be sure to make time for others in this situation. Socialization makes us happy, which helps eliminate our anxious feelings.
#7 | Moderate Alcohol and Caffeine Consumption
I’m guessing MANY of you are drinking a heck of a lot more right now. I don’t drink so it’s not an issue for me. (I quit 10 years ago and you can find out more about that journey here.) While alcohol may make you feel better in the short-term, it is proven to increase anxiety in the long-term, not to mention the detrimental effects on your health. Caffeine is the same if you overdo it, as it is also tied to high anxiety with overconsumption. So while these vices might seem like a short-term fix, they definitely are not helping you in the long run, both physically and mentally. If you feel like you are struggling with your alcohol consumption, please watch my video here.
#8 | Build Your Immune System
Staying healthy involves everything you can do to build your immune system. This means drinking lots of water, eating a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables, exercising, sleeping, and reducing stress. These are all proven to increase your immune system, and are basically just the foundations of good health. You need to be making healthy choices during this time. These choices will also help to manage anxiety.
#9 | Vitamins
Don’t just start taking vitamins. I’m not a doctor or medical professional so be sure to talk to your doctor first. There are vitamins and supplements that along with a healthy diet, may improve your overall health and ability to cope with anxiety. The most popular supplement is magnesium.
#10 | Meditation
If you already feel anxious, it can be hard to find the motivation to sit still and meditate. However, meditation is one of the major ways that you can achieve mindfulness to help you overcome stress and anxiety. One popular way is with an app – such as Calm or Headspace. They are both excellent and have programs specifically tailored for anxiety.
Breath Work is another great tool. Google Breath Work for example. We are all feeling out of control right now, and focusing on controlling your breathing is a great way to get a semblance of control that will effect your overall mental health.
I also love hypnosis. I’m doing hypnosis daily now.
I Feel Your Pain…
It’s hard to say what to do in situations like this, but what is certain is that we need each other right now. We can lean on each other and help lift each other up, even if it’s something as small as reaching out to someone on the phone. If you are struggling with anxiety… I totally get it. It’s something I struggle with anyway and now, it’s just amplified. We are in this together. And, we WILL get through this.
Anxiety is awful, but I promise that these tips really do work, and some might work better for you than others. Give them a try, keep your routine, and try to live calmly during these uncertain times.