|1. Breathing Exercises|
Take a moment to close your eyes and focus only on your breathing. Inhale slowly through your nose. Feel your diaphram move up into your ribcage and extend your belly outward as you inhale.Slowly push out your breathe as you exhale through your mouth. Feel the stress being breathed out of your body. It is no longer a part of you. Each breath should take 6 seconds to complete. Spend 3 seconds slowly inhaling through your nose and the other 3 seconds slowly exhaling through your mouth. Take 5-10 breaths like this and you’ll instantly feel more relaxed.
|2. Drink Green Tea|
L-theanine is an amino acid found in tea plants. It also promotes relaxation and modifies the stimulating effects of the caffeine present in green tea.What does that mean exactly? Well L-theanine is a caffeine antagonist, meaning that it offsets the “hyper” effect of caffeine. That is why many people will have a “soothing” cup of tea and not a soothing cup of coffee. Green tea contains more theanine than the other teas. Try drinking Green Tea in the morning for a more gradual and calming wake-up boost.
|3. Listen to Music|
Sit back and relax to your favorite tunes. I love listening to classic rock. If you’re feeling nostalgic, put on something that will transport you to another place in time.Escape and think of nothing but the music. Try to play songs with a positive or uplifting message. Really it’s up to you. Just enjoy and have fun.
|4. Take a Foot Bath|
Even if you don’t actually own a foot bath, you can fill up a large bowl with warm water and have a nice long soak.Put in some bath salts to give your feet a soft smooth feel. Add some flowers and lavender if you like to really add to the pampering quality of this experience. Put on some relaxing music and sit in a comfy chair while your soothe your cares with this moment of Zen.
|5. Meditate on Gratitude|
Take a few minutes to think about all the things you are grateful for. It could be as simple as feeling grateful for the food in your fridge or the way your puppy dog loves you. Take the time to appreciate all the gifts you have in life and how lucky you are to have them. When you show thanks for the good in your life, more good will attract itself to you.I spend 5 minutes every morning meditating on gratitude while I take a shower. It’s amazing how it always starts me off in such a great mood for the day.
Although Cardio Exercise like running or bike riding is more effective for relieving anxiety, weight lifting works well too. Really, just getting to the gym in general and burning off some steam is a wonderful way to feel better. Exercise doesn’t just provide a physical release. You’re also providing a mental release as well.By exercising, you counterbalance your negative thoughts with a positive feeling that you are taking steps towards improving your health. In effect, you cast aside worry and calm your mind with the natural high of working out.
|7. Get Rid of the Clutter|
Feng Shui is the art of creating a serene and relaxing home. Part of this study involves clearing the clutter from your environment. Clutter creates a sense of confusion and chaos. By cleaning up your home, you’re essentially clearing out the clutter from your mind.I feel so much better after doing just a little bit of housekeeping. I find it extremely relaxing to be in a clean home.I personally like getting rid of old clothes. If I haven’t worn them in a year, then they are wasteful clutter and can be given away.
|8. Get a Massage|
Take the time to treat yourself to a massage. You deserve it. A massage is not only relaxing, it also promotes healthy blood circulation and overall well-being.So go ahead, pamper yourself and feel good about it. Afterall, you’re not just doing something good for your mind. You’re also promoting a healthy body.
|9. Go for a Walk|
Nothing clears my head like a nice brisk walk. This is even better if you have beautiful backgrounds of nature to stroll through.Whenever I visit my extended family (they live in the country), I always make time for a 10 minute walk around their lake. As you walk, think about the rhythm of your body as you stride from one step to the next. It’s calming to focus on your breathing. Concentrate on each breath and empty your thoughts as you move along.
Connecting certain fragrances to an emotionally uplifting situation will trigger a relaxation response. For example, try lighting some of your favorite incense or fill your home with the aroma of potpourri while you sit back and meditate your worries away. If those aromas are too strong for you, you can buy a less pungent smelling Glade air freshener. They just plug into any outlet and you can adjust the amount of fragrance that they release. I personally love using Glade plug-ins. Vanilla is my favorite. It’s a gentle scent that eases my mind.
|11. Do Charity work|
When you help others, you take the focus off yourself. Taking the focus off yourself is a big part of overcoming anxiety. You internalize less and simply live in the moment, taking pleasure in the world around you. Feel good about yourself for doing a positive thing for others.
Escape to another place and time. Live in someone elses shoes for a while and leave your troubles behind. Reading is actually another form of meditation.You leave your own thoughts and simply follow a scripted story. You’re essentially just going along for the ride and forgetting the world around you.I doesn’t matter what you read as long as it takes your thoughts elsewhere. This is a healthy break from things and will relieve anxiety within minutes.
|13. Write out Your Thoughts|
If you feel anxious or upset, write down your thoughts in a letter or diary. Sometimes, getting it all out on paper can feel like you’re getting out of your system. Don’t meditate on your negative thoughts. Simply spill them out in front of you. Feel the words leaving your your mind and making room for a more peaceful state of consciousness.
|14. Take a Hot Bath|
Let your muscles relax and sit in peace as the water calms and soothes you. Light some candles to create and even more tranquil environment. Play music to heighten the effect. There’s no rule that says you can’t turn your bathroom into a getaway spa if only for an hour.A bonus to this is buying special soaps, shaving creams or shampoos that will further your pampered “timeout”. Treat this as a special treat and really go all out.
|15. Avoid Caffeine|
This may sound like a bit of a tough one. I myself used to be a bit of a caffeine addict. And guess what? This was right around the same time my anxiety was at its worst. Sound like a coincidence? Not really.It’s easy to think that caffeine heightens you mood. Afterall, it’s a stimulant. But the crash that you get from a strong caffeine high is enough to bring on extreme anxiety and depression. So do youself a favor and start weening yourself off the caffeine train.I now start every morning with Green Tea and I eat a Granny Smith apple with my breakfast. Granny Smiths have been proven to actually wake you up just as much as a cup of coffee in the morning.
Every night before bed, take 5 minutes to stretch. Even if it’s just touching your toes, every bit helps.When you stretch, you relieve tension in your back and muscles. You’ll feel calmer and more relaxed instantly. This is a great way to prepare for a fantastic night’s sleep.If you prefer not to stretch right before bed, you can stretch before going to the gym. It helps circulation and prevents injury as well. This anxiety reliever takes just minutes and it really does wonders. As a side benefit, you’ll feel so much better physically. Since I started stretching, I’ve noticed significantly less muscle cramps and soreness after a workout. I can honestly say this technique has made me feel younger and more vibrant.
|17. Eat Chocolate|
Chocolate releases phenylethylamine in the brain. This so called “chocolate amphetamine” causes changes in blood pressure and blood-sugar levels leading to feelings of excitement and alertness. It works like amphetamines to increase mood and decrease depression. It’s been said that chocolate creates a feeling of “being in love”. I just like the taste myself. But if you needed some extra convincing to eat a piece of chocolate, know that it’s been proven to relieve anxiety.
Smile and think of a time when you were most happy. Think of a funny moment, a family member you love or a time when you dared to try something new.Smile and think positively. Throw your negative thoughts out of your head and shield them off with a broad, life-loving smile.Share your smile with others. When you smile at someone, they can’t help but smile back at you. It’s part of human nature. Smile and bring joy into the lives of others. Smile and keep that smile for as long as you want to. The choice really is yours.
|19. Guided Imagery|
Guided Imagery is just a fancy way of saying visualize something that calms you. When you feel anxious or stressed, close your eyes. Picture a serene setting where you’d love to escape to.For me, my visualization involves laying in a beautiful grassy field under a wise, angular tree that stretches high above me. The sky is clear, sunny and ominous with breathtaking clouds. There are no bugs in my vison and the temperature is just perfect. A cool breeze engulfs my body in a refreshing whisper. I’m barefoot and the grass cushions my body with soft feathery support. I feel as light as air and my mind drifts off into sleepy bliss.Get the idea? It’s good to make your vision as detailed as possible. Become completely emersed in the escape and leave your anxiety out of the picture.
I find it impossible to feel anxiety when I am completely carried away with lovemaking. Sex is healthy, good for the mind and body.It rejuvenates you and makes you feel completely alive. This anxiety reliever should not be overlooked. When you are completely swept away by the love of your partner, you forget about all of life’s stresses.Take a vacation from the anxiety in your mind. Instead, fill your head with the thoughts of love for another. Then indulge yourselves and think of nothing but the moment.
|21. Repeat a Mantra|
As the Law of Attraction States, thoughts are things. So when you think negatively, negative things will come into your life. Conversely, when you think positively, positive things will come into your life. Having a Mantra is a great way to control your thought pattern and relieve anxiety.When you’re feeling anxious, have a mantra or short prayer memorized that you can repeat in the moment. Everyone’s mantra will be different and tailored to their own anxiety but my mantra is:“I am a kind, loving person. I strive everyday to be the best I can be and all good things flow to me from the universe. Any worry or stress I have now will not make a difference in the long term of my life. My life is good and will continue to be good. I am blessed for all that I have. The only opinion that matters in life is the opinion of myself. I love myself.”You can make your mantra whatever you choose. Make it something that speaks to your mentality and comforts your soul. Repeat your mantra in times of doubt and confusion. Hold firm that it is the truth. Your mantra will be your relaxing touchstone.
|22. Eat Your Favorite Food|
I’m not telling you to go out and binge eat to get over your anxiety. Obviously that’s not a healthy strategy. However, you are allowed to indulge in your favorite comfort foods when things get particularly stressful.My comfort food is sushi. I like it when it’s super fresh and the rice is still slightly warm. I add a little hot Miso soup to the mix to really make me feel cozy. This is my relaxing meal. What’s yours?
|23. Go by or Near Water|
This could be as simple as laying by a pool or walking along the shoreline of your favorite beach. Water naturally has a calming effect on us.The calming effect is thought to be derived from the peaceful time when we were in out mother’s womb.Some other ideas for going near water could be visiting an aquarium, watching a beautiful lightening storm from your window, taking a walk around a lake or even simply taking a hot shower.