How to Release Anxiety and Stress & Relax Naturally
Financial pressure, Deadlines at work, relationship issues, build up to exams or an ailing spouse or parent…there are scores of such reasons that cause stress and may be sabotaging your confidence, turning your stomach into knots, and impacting your general wellbeing and happiness. There is a lot of day to day stuff that occupies our mind and stresses us out! Well, it is absolutely normal to feel this way. But when stress gets out of hand, it becomes anxiety—that feeling of sweaty hands and being unable to relax. It can be caused by a grim family situation, tough deadlines at work, an over demanding boss or teacher, an unsteady relationship, exams or something as trivial as not being able to find something. While its normal to feel stressed and anxious sometimes, it’s not good to be gripped by worry all the time and let anxiety take over your life. So how can you fight the demons and learn to chill out? So let me tell you a few things I do when I am bogged down by stress and anxiety. Just like me even you can squash the uncomfortable consequences of stress and anxiety with these simple tips.
A walk on the beach or Nature
Whenever I feel stressed out and overwhelmed by responsibilities, I prefer to take a walk along the beach or in nature and watch the beautiful sunset. It soothes my mind and makes me feel beautiful, and invokes a feeling of ‘being’ within me. All the stress that has kept my mind occupied, releases in no time and I begin to feel calm and peaceful. Health advocates say that walking on the beach or nature reconnects us to nature’s beauty which helps reduce stress as we find perspective in life.
Deep breathing is one of the quick fixes to lower stress in the body. This is simply because when you take deep breaths, you send messages to your brain to calm down and relax. The brain then sends this message to your body. Increased heart rate, fast breathing, high blood pressure and other symptoms associated with stress and anxiety disappear as soon as you begin to indulge in deep breathing!
This is something I practice everytime. I believe, awareness of the present moment is a key feature of mindfulness which increases stress resilience and effective coping. When you begin to monitor and pay attention to the present moment rather than predicting the future events or dwelling on the past, you begin to feel better. Living in the present reduces stress levels, eliminates anxiety and depression, improves mood and fills us with a sense of improved well-being. Start practicing this and see how stress free you begin to feel!
Long salt bath
This is something I do before sleeping in the night. To soak that day away, I prefer to take a long Epsom salt bath. Salt baths are amazing to relieve stress and make you feel relaxed inside out. Salt baths help me sleep like a baby and I wake up fresh and rejuvenated. If you can’t find the time to do this every day, at least try to do it twice or thrice a week. A long salt bath in the night is the key to good sleep and a sound sleep is the key to stress free life.
When you’re feeling frazzled, a cup of chamomile tea can soothe those ragged nerves
Not only does a daily cuppa boost your immune system, reduce inflammation and keep your memory sharp, but it can also reduce stress, calm anxiety and improve mood. Chamomile tea, generally known as one of the best calming teas is the best tea for anxiety. It promotes sleep and relaxation, has anti-inflammatory properties like green tea and is also naturally caffeine free. It contributes to better sleep, and can cause drowsiness, so have it at bedtime or in the evening.
When stress takes over, most people feel like isolating themselves, withdrawing into their cave and shutting out the world. But this is precisely the wrong approach. Not feeling connected to others contributes to depression, anxiety and low energy. Reaching out to people for support can be helpful from several different perspectives. Reach out to people in your life you can have fun with. Laughing and playing in all its forms can have a significantly positive impact on our stress levels. Doing things that are fun, especially together with other people, can lighten the heaviness of tough times. You can also try to connect with a person or community, that can create a deeper sense of meaning and put your own challenges into perspective. Sometimes we do need mentors to guide us through the uncertainties in life.
If your first impulse is to open the refrigerator whenever you’re stressed, upset, angry, lonely, exhausted, or bored, you’re going to get stuck in an unhealthy cycle where the real problem is never addressed. Food is not the solution to relieve stress. Eating may feel good in the moment, but it does not help with the feeling that triggered the hunger in the first place. In fact, often you feel worse because of the unnecessary calories you’ve just consumed. So eat light when you’re stressed out to make a positive change. Dealing with emotions can be healthy too. So you just need to learn to eat mindfully instead of mindlessly, regain control of your weight, and finally put a stop to emotional overeating.
Listen to music
I love music! Whenever I feel offbeat, I plug in my earphones and listen to some soothing music. Relaxing music helps to maintain emotional balance and fills you with renewed energy. With music, every activity can be more fun and enjoyable. For example, driving is stressful but with music, you can enjoy and change that stressful experience into a fun experience. Listening to music will not only help you relieve stress but will transport you into a world of imagination and ecstasy. And the happier you feel, the more stress free you are!
Light a candle
I have a lot of candles in my house and I love lighting them up in the evenings. You won’t believe this but candles are scientifically proven to soothe us. The gentle, mesmerising quality of their light makes them a perfect aid for relieving stress and anxiety. The low light that comes from a candle is captured by your sight and sent straight to your brain for processing. Because of our associations with candlelight, the body begins to relax – changing how we feel emotionally and physically. And with more relaxation comes more energy, better sleep, enhanced immunity, less pain and a more pleasant personality.
Spend time with your pet
I have so and so pet and I love cuddling him/her whenever I find time. If I am too stressed out I always go and play with him for a while and I instantly begin to feel great. Studies say that when you pet your dog/ cat even for just a few minutes, your body releases feel-good hormones such as prolactin and serotonin and also decreases the effect of stress hormones.
Write a gratitude journal
If you haven’t started doing this yet, do it right away. Feeling gratitude for everything we are blessed with is so very important! And the simple reason for that is, when we feel gratitude for everything we have, we begin to feel great about ourselves. And the greater we feel about ourselves, the more peaceful and content we feel! Stress is caused due to a feeling of not having been able to do something, or due to a hurry to complete something. But when we are totally content, we can be more relaxed in our actions and think straight! We won’t be panicking mindlessly, thinking of what will happen next. So write down a gratitude journal, list down all the things you feel grateful for everyday at the end of the day and feel beautiful about yourself!
Remember, stress is just a perspective, and to overcome it, all you need to do is, change your perspective! These are the things I do to fight stress and I hope these methods help you conquer your stress too!
What is your way to beat anxiety and stress naturally? Share with me and my tribe.
Love and Health