Out of all the numerous mental health disorders in the world, anxiety concerns are most common. In the United States, approximately 18.1% of the whole population suffers from anxiety. It is normal to feel a little anxious or panicked in certain circumstances. These are normal human emotions. However, in individuals suffering from an anxiety condition, these reactions are often quite intensified and draining. Thus, making it a disorder.
Anything out of the ordinary is a sign that something is not right. For example, stage fright is a common phenomenon, and feeling nervous is okay. However, experiencing shortness of breath, the urge to vomit, an increased heartbeat, etc., before giving a presentation is not usual. And thus, these reactions are indicative of an anxiety disorder. Individuals who suffer from such a condition should seek medical help. Dealing with anxiety can sometimes become extremely incapacitating. It can hinder your life and push you into a vicious cycle of additional mental issues. Professional assistance can give you the proper means to counter and reduce your anxiety symptoms through behavioral therapies, counseling, medications, etc.
However, remember that it is not all doom and gloom. Even without professional help, you can minimize your anxiety concerns in specific effective ways. Here we mention a few techniques how you can reduce anxiety and better your mental health on your own:
Seek professional help
Seeking help from the right professionals is monumental in coping with anxiety. Quite many people tend to ignore their mental health and delay trusting an expert with their mental issues. But let us tell you, the professionals working in the field for over the years have strong knowledge of the subject and are qualified to help you deal with your concerns. Over time, psychology has become a subject of deep interest. Consequently, several colleges, universities, and online educational platforms offer several courses for students to study psychology from the comfort of their own space, such as an online masters in counseling program. Consequently, finding qualified therapists who know their work will not be much difficult for you.
Like how you would go to a general physician to understand why your head frequently hurts, you must pick on signs of mental health issues and consult a specialist. Also, certain people are skeptical whether therapies can do them any good. Let us tell you, they genuinely do. There are numerous successful cases of people who fought over their anxiety disorders through different therapies and professional help.
Understand your triggers and then devise a plan to manage them
For every individual who suffers from an anxiety disorder, different triggers ignite this behavioral response. So, for some, public speaking may trigger a panic attack, whereas for others, meeting certain relatives may prompt an anxiety overdrive. It is best if you assess your triggers and do not go by the book. For this, you will need to evaluate your behavior under different circumstances. A great way to keep track of your triggers is to carry a journal with you and pen down whatever you feel when hit with a panic attack. You can even take notes on your smartphone.
Moreover, it is essential to be honest with yourself during this process and not sugarcoat stuff. The more honest you are, the better you can break down your behavior and conclude what causes your anxiety. Some common causes include public performances, stress, fights, social gatherings, negative self-talk, or personal triggers, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Once you have assessed all your triggers, you should seek out ways to avoid them.
Practice deep breathing exercises
‘Take a deep breath!’ is often the first thing we say when someone is nervous or anxious. However, it is more than just a phrase. Deep breathing is proven to calm your nerves and relax your mind. Abdominal breathing for 20 to 30 minutes triggers the brain’s parasympathetic nervous system by providing the brain with more oxygen. It further promotes a feeling of calmness all through your body. Moreover, deep breathing can help you be more aware of your body and feel more connected. It instantly takes your mind off the trigger prompting the anxiety attack.
Make use of aromatherapy
Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils to treat specific health concerns. In recent years, aromatherapy has become quite popular. Essential oils are extracted from plants and benefit the human body in several ways, such as reducing pain, stress, etc.
Individuals can also use aromatherapy to fight anxiety disorders and calm their nerves. One of the most effective oils for stress and anxiety is Valerian oil. It has a slight sedative effect on the body, making it a perfect way to tackle anxiety. Some other oils that can help include lavender, jasmine, chamomile, etc. Taking a hot bath with a few drops of essential oil can help soothe your mind and body. And can help you to cope with your anxiety.
Redirect your focus
One proven way that helps anxiety patients is to refocus the mind on activities that are more enjoyable and less triggering. The goal is to distract the mind from thinking about the situation that is causing anxiety. So, for example, you could listen to some of your favorite music, do some physical workouts, read a book, or go bicycling. Anything that gets you up and going is an excellent way to cope with anxiety.
Coping with anxiety may seem difficult right now. However, remember that it is doable. Different coping mechanisms work best for different people. It would help if you evaluate what helps you best and then turn it into a routine to prevent anxiety from creeping in. We have highlighted a few ways above. We hope that they will prove effective for you in coping with anxiety.