Anxiety is something that millions of Americans, and people around the world, have to deal with every day. It doesn’t feel nice at all. Your heart pounds, your palms sweat, you may even feel some chest pain, and sometimes it feels like the air is being sucked out of your lungs.
For things that make us anxious on a daily bases, which some of us feel it much worse than others, there are little things you can do – distractions – to make yourself feel a little bit better. You have to try to climb out of your mind for even just a moment to reduce those unpleasant symptoms that dealing with anxiety gives us.
Below is a basic list of ways to help reduce your anxiety.
- Count to 10 and take a deep breath.
- Wear a necklace or pendant, or get a small item that you like, so that you can rub it in between your fingers when you get nervous or have anxiety. (Sounds crazy – but I do this all the time and it really helps!)
- Take deep breaths in and out slowly for 3 minutes.
- Look up something funny.
- Avoid alcohol and excess caffeine when anxious! Alcohol is actually a depressant.
- Take a time-out (Walk away, listen to an upbeat sound, read a happy quote or song lyrics, etc…)
- Get a massage (But, not a deep tissue one! Ouch!)
- Text a friend a random joke just to get them to LOL which will then make you LOL.
- Talk to someone you trust.
- Message us here at MBM @ ContactMyBipolarMind@gmail.com
- Write a poem.
- Journal – even if it’s ok an app.
- Write out what is making you anxious then ask yourself these questions: Is this logical? Is this irrational? What’s the best thing that could happen? What is the worst thing that could happen and how would I cope – what would my first step be?
- Drink a relaxing cup of tea.
- Drop your shoulders and roll your neck.
- Say a positive affirmation to yourself – even if you don’t believe it.
- Repeat, “I am okay. I will get through this.” over and over.
- Take a bath.
- Play with a pet.
- Play with a fidget cube.
- Squeeze a stress ball.
- Get a second opinion.
- Do a task slower than normal
- Do some yoga.
Write down anything on this list that interests you. This way if you start to become anxious you the list there with you to choose from. Sometimes it takes a bit to find something works for you! Keep at it, though! It will help.
Samantha is the author of "My Bipolar Mind: You're not alone," she is also a freelance writer, blogger, and mental health advocate who runs and manages her own mental health blog MyBipolarMind.com.