There is no full-proof way to control anxiety. However, certain anxiety tips and tricks will help alleviate the symptoms of a full-blown anxiety attack or the general feeling of anxiety.
- Shock Your Body
- Take Deep Breaths
- Do the Square
- Reduce Caffeine
- Jump or Pump
- Get Flicking
- Force a Giggle
These are the ten anxiety tips and tricks we will go through, they are all free to do except one, and with a bit of planning, you can take control of a racing mind and full-on, stressed, panicky body.
1. Shock Your Body
This is the biggest trick to play on your body, so I have placed it at number one. You will need to make sure your freezer has many ice cubes at the ready, and when anxiety strikes, grab a tray of cubes and place them in the washing up bowl, fill with cold water. Put the bowl on the floor and put your feet in it.
Your mind will now be focused on the uncomfortable feeling and not on the anxious thoughts in your brain. Take your feet out after 20 seconds, and if the thoughts reappear, do it again. Repeat another five times if necessary.
2. Take Deep Breaths
When your breathing quickens, you don’t take in enough oxygen, and this, in turn, speeds up your heart, causing the panic attack feeling, and then you feel as though you can not breathe.
Start practising taking long slow deep breaths, breath in through your nose and out through your mouth. Practice this at least three times a day for several minutes. Then when anxiety strikes, you can put into action what you have practised.
3. Do The Square
Look at a blank wall and start to draw a square with your mind. Start at the bottom and go up to the top; from that corner, go across to the next corner and then down to the next and across to where you started. Erase the square in your mind and repeat as often as you need to until your breathing relaxes back to a normal level.
You can change the shape to a rectangle or a triangle, and you can even do a circle. The action of your mind should take your thoughts from your concern and focus on the shape.
4. Reduce Caffeine
You may have heard this one a lot, but it works. Caffeine can increase anxiety. I remember my son, who is a gym-goer, used to take a pre-workout on occasions. Afterwards, he would begin to feel anxious, and it was the caffeine creating the uncomfortable, anxious feeling. He stopped drinking it when the connection was made.
Coffee and tea have the same effect; you are best at sticking to herbal teas or juices and squash. Over time you may find your anxiety lessens quite a bit. Try chamomile, one of my favourite teas.
5. Jump or Pump
This is one of my go-to anxiety busters, and it is, as the name suggests jumping or pumping your arms. When I feel anxiety coming on before it hits, I start jumping on the spot; if you can’t jump, try pumping your arms up and down. It will give the same effect.
Raise your heartbeat naturally and not through anxiety. The extra energy that is building through anxiety will dissipate with the jumping or pumping. It works for me.
This sounds a bit silly, but it works, and as you start drawing, you notice that your pencil strokes suddenly become lighter, and you then realise you are starting to relax. The best thing to start drawing is spirals; they normally start quite firm with the pencil, and you may even break the nib at first because of anxiety. So make sure you have a pencil sharpener on standby or a lot of pencils.
As you progress with your spirals, your anxiety will reduce, and your pencil strokes will soften; once they are gentle, then you can stop.
7. Get Flicking
This is one you will need to prepare ahead of. Make tiny little balls of paper, the size of your little fingernail and store them in a cup. When anxiety strikes, empty the balls onto a table and use the cup as a goalmouth.
Now get flicking those balls into the cup, keep score if you like so you can try and go for the highest score; if you have other household members with you, you can turn it into a game. But while you are trying to get these little balls into the cup, your anxiety will lessen.
If you have read any of my websites, you will know that I favour aromatherapy as an aid to relaxation and increasing mood with depression.
Try and invest in a diffuser and some organic lavender oil and let the aroma waft over you; this is best used before anxiety strikes fully. You can combine the aroma with many of the other activities I have suggested in this list.
9. Force a Giggle
Another of the anxiety tips and tricks is laughter. There is something called laughter therapy, and it works by forcing a laugh out of yourself and to keep going until it becomes a natural laugh.
You may think it very silly at first. Still, eventually, after fake laughing, you will actually start laughing, and you can’t panic breath if you are laughing if it is virtually impossible.
This is a long-term solution, and you should try to download a hypnotherapy app to your mobile phone. I won’t suggest any as everyone is different. It took me downloading quite a lot of them to find the perfect one, but after a lot of trial and error, I found one which worked for me, even though its reviews were quite negative.
Try the free ones out first, and then when you have found the one you like and which works for you, go for the paid version to get rid of annoying adverts.
Peace & Blessings x