For every individual, once or twice, you should have had these feelings – your heart beating faster in response to a stressful situation or your palms get sweaty when you are challenged with an overwhelming task or event.
These experiences or turn of events are anxiety — the way our body naturally responds to stress. However, there are times where anxiety can get severe and turn into anxiety attacks that might feel manageable at first but tends to build up over a few hours.
When anxiety sets in, there are many things to do to keep you calm.
Short Term Strategies For Coping With Anxiety
If your anxiety is periodic and gets in the way of your tasks, below are a few ways to deal with this short-term anxiety:
Question Your Thought Pattern
Negative thoughts can sprout-up in your mind and make you see a particular situation from a wrong angle. To deal with this, it is best to challenge your fears by asking yourself if these fears are genuine.
Practice Focused, Deep Breathing
Practicing breath-ins for five counts and breath up for five counts will even out your breath and slow your heart rate, which will make you calm.
Making use of scents like chamomile, sandalwood or lavender in any form (candle, incense, or oil form) will help ease off anxiety.
Go For A Walk
Walking away from the situation is the best way to calm anxiety. Taking a walk gives you time to focus more on the environment and less on the situation at hand.
For people who have periodic anxiety and those with Generalized Anxiety Disorder ( GAD), these few steps mentioned above will be beneficial in times of distress.
Nevertheless, if you have GAD, the short-term method should be coupled with some long-term strategies to lessen the severity of your anxiety and also prevent reoccurrences.
Long-Term Strategies For Coping With Anxiety
If anxiety is a part of you, you must use treatment strategies. It could just be the use of one treatment method or a mix of short term methods and medications etc.
Below are the long-term ways of managing anxiety.
- Identify And Learn To Manage Your Triggers
To fight or manage anxiety, you will have to point out the primary source (trigger) of your anxiety. When you do figure out your anxiety point, you should endeavor to limit your exposure to it.
Some Anxiety Triggers Are:
- A stressful job or work environment
- Anxiety could run in your family
- Side effects of certain medications
- Phobias, such as agoraphobia (fear of crowded or open spaces) and claustrophobia (fear of small spaces)
- Having another mental illness such as depression
- Withdrawal from drugs or certain medications
- Some chronic diseases e.g. Heart disease, diabetes, or asthma
- Chronic pain
- Driving or traveling
2. Adopt Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps people learn and unlearn different ways of thinking about and reacting to anxiety-causing situations. A therapist could influence or help you change negative thought patterns or behaviors before they come up.
3. Daily Or Routine Meditation
Mindful meditation, when done correctly and regularly, can help train your brain to get rid of anxious thoughts when they come and help you focus on something positive.
4. Keep Your Body And Mind Healthy
Getting enough sleep, staying connected to people who are positive and caring, eating balanced diets, and exercising regularly will help you thrive against anxiety.
Anxiety comes in as a natural response to challenging issues, but at a point where they become severe, take in the tips given above. If it doesn’t go away, you can reach out to your mental health provider who will prescribe drugs in combination with these natural tips. For more tips on how to manage stress and anxiety, please go through our health and fitness category. ss