Anxiety is on the increase
Life has changed immeasurably in the past few weeks and months. We are all dealing with uncertainty. Fear, doubt, financial concerns, and family stresses sow the seeds of anxiety. As Donna Booth explains, our need to contribute, combined with a growing sense of helplessness, often causes anxiety to spiral. It’s essential to take a moment or two for yourself to get everything back under control. So today I am going to share with you 3 ways of coping with anxiety.
3 ways of coping with anxiety
Deep breathing is excellent for bringing your attention out of your head and into your body and helping you to manage emotions. You can do it anywhere, at any time, without people noticing.
Sit comfortably and place one hand on your belly. Imagine there is a balloon in your belly and imagine filling the balloon with your inhalation. You should notice the hand on your belly rise. Don’t worry if it is your chest that rises first, the more you practice, the easier it will be. Hold the air in your lungs, and then exhale slowly. The secret is to go slow: Time the inhalation (4 seconds), pause (2 seconds), and exhalation (6 seconds). Practice this for 3-5 minutes.
Progressive muscle relaxation
By tensing and relaxing the muscles throughout your body, you can achieve a deep feeling of relaxation. This exercise helps you recognise where in your body you are holding tension.
Sit back or lie down in a comfortable position. Follow the instructions below, tensing each body part for about 10 seconds. Notice how the feeling of relaxation differs from the feeling of tension.
Feet – Curl your toes tightly into your fee, then release.
Calves – Point then flex your feet, then relax.
Thighs – Squeeze your thighs together tightly, then relax.
Torso – Suck in your tummy as if you were trying to touch your spine, then relax.
Back – Squeeze your shoulder blades together, then relax.
Shoulders – Scrunch your shoulders up to your ears, then drop them.
Arms – make fists and squeeze to your shoulders, then drop them.
Hands – Make a fist by curling your fingers into your palm, then stretch your fingers wide and relax.
Face – Scrunch your facial features as if you were trying to get them to meet in the middle of your face, then relax.
Full body – Squeeze all muscles together, then release the tension. Deep breath in, deep breath out.
Using Your Senses
This exercise brings you back into the moment. It can be done very quickly, or you can take a little more time on each sense.
- Notice five things that you can see. Look all around to take in all your surroundings. Look for small details you would usually miss.
- Notice four sounds that you can hear. Listen closely to everything around you and further away.
- Now three things that you can feel. Think of how the air feels on your skin, and how your clothes feel on your body.
- Notice two things you can smell. What scents are present? What does the air smell like? Take some time to appreciate the sents.
- And finally, one thing you can taste. Do you have something you can eat or can you taste the air or the inside of your mouth?Above all, make sure you take time for yourself, don’t feel you must use this time to do ‘all the things’. Pause, breathe, take care of yourself, be with your loved ones, and give yourself time to consider the parts of your life that you want to carry forward into your new future.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post, 3 ways of coping with anxiety and I will be writing about many others in the future so make sure you hit subscribe so that you don’t miss any of them. Thank you for reading.
Love and Light