The Best Ways to Decrease Anxiety

The Best Ways to Decrease AnxietyAnxiety is a general term for conditions that cause worry, stress, fear or apprehension that is disproportionate to the actual events at hand. Though certain experiences should elicit a proper amount of nervousness or fear – like taking a big test or performing in front of a large crowd – people who suffer from anxiety disorders can feel debilitating panic regardless of the actual circumstances. Learning how to manage anxiety in a healthy way will make all the difference in a person’s wellness, relationships and enjoyment of life.

Manage Your Anxiety Naturally

There are many ways to naturally manage anxiety levels. A few of them include the following activities:

  • Exercise. Aerobic and strength exercising is an excellent way to reduce stress and anxiety. Whether it is a run, a session with weights at the gym, a swim or just a brisk walk, the body responds with natural relaxation chemicals after exercise and the brain relaxes considerably.
  • Eat and drink the right way. Many people have extremely sensitive endocrine systems. The chemical regulators in the brain can be off-set by bad diets and lack of water. Make sure to drink plenty of water and avoid unhealthy foods as much as possible. Finding food that you really enjoy and eating a proper amount can actually be a relaxing experience in and of itself. Avoid caffeine as well. Alcohol should also be avoided as it can very easily become an anxiety crutch. Many people have become alcoholics due to anxiety issues.
  • Massages, baths, foot rubs. Massages are excellent for relieving tension and anxiety. Deep tissue massages push toxins out of muscle tissue and stimulate similar physiological responses as exercise. Hot soaking baths and even foot rubs can also be helpful.
  • Create a relaxing environment. It is very important for everyone to have a restful, quiet place they can go to unwind. Every sense should be considered as you set up your special place. Scents are important and candles or oils provide many aroma options that trigger your mind to relax. Sound is also important. Music or the sound of trickling water can be very relaxing. Set a comfortable level of lighting (avoiding fluorescent light) and make sure you have a comfortable place to sit or lay down. Relaxation is about much more than sleep. Creating a clean, organized and intentionally relaxing space will pay big dividends in stress and anxiety relief down the road.
  • Talk. Conversation, whether with a friend, a spouse or a counselor, is one of the most important sources of anxiety relief available to a person. Verbally exploring your feelings and experiences in the company of a person who can provide valuable perspective and empathy can be very powerful. Counselors can be especially helpful as anxiety-management coaches.

If not managed properly anxiety can lead to panic, substance abuse, relational meltdown or self-destruction. In some cases severe anxiety must be treated medically. Be very careful with anxiety medications as many can be addictive. Follow your doctor’s dosing suggestions diligently and be forthcoming about any history you may have had with substance abuse or addiction.

Help with Anxiety

If you would like information on treatment options for anxiety or related substance abuse issues, please call our 24 hour toll-free helpline. We are always open and would like to help you take the first steps toward managing your anxiety.