I’ve been anxious my whole life.
Preschool. School. Uni. Work. Relationships.
You name it! Being sensitive is not easy.
Heck, sometimes it can legitimately drive you crazy (and if you came to read this, you probably already know that).
High anxiety is hard to beat completely, but there’s good news – it can be managed.
Through time and practice, one can learn to be less anxious and… a little bit braver.
When you feel anxious, it’s important to slow down and take things easy.
Here are some of the activities I do when my anxiety level is skyrocketing (and if you want to track your anxiety levels too, take a look at this tracker).
P. S. Here’s a ton of resources to help you with your anxiety:
- How to sleep with anxiety: 3 steps to calm & comfortable night
- How to use planning to relieve your anxiety
- Anxiety journals and how they can help you
- 15 mindfulness activities to try when you feel anxious
- Anxiety Management Bundle for anxiety relief
- Thought Workbook (CBT based method to relieve anxiety)
- How to stay positive when life keeps giving you problems
Do check them out!
1. Decompress as soon as you can.
Had a major stress event? Maybe a stressful week? Month? A year?..
You need to start decompressing.
By saying “decompress” I mean to get somewhere comfy – as soon as you can and as often as you can.
If you can make your brain think about things associated with pleasure, the stress response in your body will begin to subside.
Anything can be useful here – candlelit atmosphere, soothing music, purring cat on your lap, rain sounds – anything you like.
I personally love warm water. Step in your shower or bathtub and let warm water soothe you.
Forget about hair masks or leg shaving – these can wait!
Try not to think about anything and concentrate only on this amazing feeling on your skin.
I usually sit in my shower for a good 30 minutes and, even though it doesn’t remove my problems, it relieves tight muscles and I feel a little better immediately.
Another way to deeply relax is by using high-quality essential oil blends.
A good, relaxing essential oil can lift weeks of stress in minutes!
You can use essential oils in a diffuser, add a few drops in your hot steaming shower or add to your body lotion if it’s suitable for topical use.
Natural relaxing things are much healthier to your body… and that leads me to my next tip.
2. Drink valerian root tea or take magnesium.
If you’re not allergic to valerian root, this calming herb can be a real lifesaver at night.
You can find it in many forms – tea, tincture or tablet supplements and it works by giving your body a calming effect.
I usually sip valerian root tea with some honey and it helps me feel less tense and anxious in about 15 minutes. It also helps me fall asleep and works as a natural muscle relaxant too.
If you’re not familiar with valerian root or can’t find it where you live, Magnesium is another supplement that gives a similar effect and is more available.
Just be careful about the dosage – too much magnesium will result in some prolonged bathroom sessions.
3. Write down your thoughts.
Writing down helps to clear your mind and let it rest.
When I encounter a serious overthinking period, it’s almost the only way to stop my thoughts from running around like crazy.
If it’s just general anxiety, I use my Anxiety Journal to do some mindfulness breathing and thought dumping, maybe choose something from the Trigger & Helper list.
If I am worrying like crazy and feel restless, the absolute best way to deal with this is The Worry Workbook which I absolutely swear by.
It encourages self-support and gently forces you to evaluate negative thoughts – are they real, or just imagined?
Can I change the situation?
Am I avoiding something?
How can I comfort and support myself?
It’s silly how often I find myself worrying about something that is only in my head – the thing is not even real, come on!
Read more about this: Anxiety Journals and how they can help you
Here are two examples of anxiety journals you can use to let it all out:
4. Talk to someone you trust.
If you can, talk to someone you trust.
Make sure the person is understanding and non-judgemental – you don’t need to listen to anything negative right now.
If you don’t have that kind of person or no one is available now, it is totally fine to use online therapy websites. Or, you can also download an app like 9 Cups Of Tea to your phone and chat with trained strangers for free (hey, anything that helps!).
*If you feel like your anxiety is getting out of control I really, really recommend considering therapy. I don’t know why it sometimes has a bad stigma, but many people have benefited from it and I think it’s at least worth trying.
5. Let it pass.
Finally, if nothing helps, I just let it be and try to do something easy and pleasant, like watching TV.
Thoughts, worries, troubles, bad feelings… they all pass – sooner or later.
And if I can’t eliminate my anxiety completely, I try to learn to embrace it.
It’s the part of me at the moment – and that’s fine!
It’s OK to not feel ok.
It’s totally normal to be sad.
At the end of the day, this too shall pass anyway, but you will come out stronger.
Do you want to learn how to deal with your anxiety, withstand worry spells and find relief at the comfort of your home?
Grab an instantly downloadable Anxiety Management Bundle to start journaling right away! You can print and start it in a few minutes and it’s an easy way to start working on your negative thoughts, conquer them and learn to be more positive and brave.
This bundle features 4 most popular printable anxiety journals and tools from the ShineSheets store and is available to download right now! Write down your thoughts in an anxiety journal, diffuse your worry in a guided workbook, track your sleep and anxiety levels and learn to manage your anxiety safely and medication-free.
Stay resilient and keep fighting. Every rain is ultimately followed by a sunshine.
Scroll down for more tips!