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How to deal with stress and anxiety?

What is Stress?

Stress is an inseparable part of our everyday life, and it can overwhelm us. According to various studies, a tiny amount of stress can increase productivity by making you more active. There are no prominent reasons for stress, as you may feel it even while grocery shopping or in traffic jams.

What is Anxiety?

Anxiety is a feeling of being overwhelmed, and you can not control it; there are possibilities you might respond in the wrong way. In the current scenario, isolation due to the sudden pandemic is one of the most prominent reasons.

This blog will help you know about some helpful tips on stress and anxiety reduction.

Tips to reduce stress and anxiety

Breathing Exercises

It is one of the best and easiest stress reduction techniques because it takes your simple focus on breathing. Firstly, sit or lie down for some time in a quiet place, take a deep breath through your nose and gradually breathe out through your mouth, or your nose if you feel this way is better. Deep breathing holds the capacity to keep your mind calm.

Mindfulness and Mantra Meditation

Mindfulness is an ancient meditation form that promotes awareness regarding what is happening at the moment. It encourages you to focus on your thoughts, body, and what’s happening around you. Mantra meditation is quite the opposite of mindfulness. In this method, you need to focus on a single target, like a candle flame, a mantra, or a phrase.

In both types of meditation, you can make it refocus if your mind wanders. In the initial phase of the first two weeks, you might be unable to do it very well. Your mind will constantly distract and chatter, but remember that it is normal. With training, you will improve at it.

Moderate Muscle Relaxation

In this method, the focus is put on slowly tightening and relaxing muscle groups. You can practice it together with guided imagery and breathing exercises. Firstly, find a comfortable place to lie down or sit, and take a few deep breaths after closing your eyes.

Either you can start with your head and face muscles and work your way down the body, or you can start with the toes and work your way up the body. Focus on each muscle group individually, hold and tense for approximately 5 seconds, relax for 30 seconds, and repeat.

Consult your medical healthcare provider before initiating progressive muscle relaxation therapy if you have pre-existing heart disease.
Guided Imagery or Visualization

Your imagination can help you reduce stress and anxiety, imagine yourself lying on a beautiful sandy beach with a soft and soothing breeze. It will help if you use your senses to smell the saltwater and feel the air as you transport yourself there. This process is known as guided imagery or visualization. It uses the power of an individual’s mind to change the focus to a peaceful time or event.

Autogenic Training

This practice asks you to focus on the feeling of warmth and heaviness in different body parts. Then repeat soothing and pleasant words or statements for each body part silently, like my arms feel warm and heavy. This simple technique can create feelings of physical and emotional calmness.
Autogenic therapy is also a combination of breathing exercises and guided imagery to reduce stress, anxiety, and heart rate.

Yoga and Tai Chi

These low-intensity exercises have been known around the world for thousands of years. They include physical and meditative movements to lower blood pressure and ease stress.

Yoga is a well-known form that requires you to perform different strengthening and stretching postures. Try remaining still and focusing on your breathing as you complete each pose.

Tai chi involves graceful, slow movements, like a dance. You will breathe deeply and keep total concentration on your body while moving the weight from one pose to the next. Depending upon your body’s physical abilities, you can do both exercises while sitting in a chair, although you typically do tai chi while standing.

Physical Exercise

Actual work is probably the ideal way to decrease pressure, and uneasiness and get appropriate rest. Doctors who exercise regularly tend to get proper rest that renews the brain and body. Just ensure that you do not exercise before going to bed, as it can disrupt your sleep.

Exercises also motivate you and uplift your mood. The reason behind it may be that it stimulates the body to release several hormones like endocannabinoids and endorphins that help block pain, sedate you, and improve sleep.

People who exercise regularly also feel less anxious and more positive. As well all know, when one’s body feels good, the mind often follows. You may get a dose of stress relief by swimming, running, cycling, dancing, or aerobics.

If you don’t have time for formal exercise, you may try the following activities:

  • Use the stairs rather than the elevator
  • use a bike instead of a car to drive to the store
  • hand-wash your car
  • park your vehicle as far as you can from the door
  • walk on your lunch break
  • clean your house

Proper Diet

The benefits of eating healthy food can help you manage your mental health. A proper diet holds the capacity to lessen the effects of stress, level your mood, build up your immune, and lower your blood pressure to a non-risky level. Try dieting complex carbohydrates, fatty acids (found in fish), lean proteins, eggs, meat, and nuts to stay healthy.
Avoid eating junk food as it seems more appealing when under a lot of stress. Excessive added sugar and fat can worsen your anxiety and make you more anxious.

Writing: Pen down your feelings

Finding an easy way to express anxiety can make you feel that you can manage your condition. Some researches and my personal experience suggest you pen down your feelings as journaling and other writing forms usually help people cope better with anxiety. It would be best to enroll your children or yourself in a creative writing course if you feel like having stress or anxiety.

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