There’s so much to be anxious about given the recent turn of events. It’s been incredibly hard to turn off the news, get off my phone, and not tune into the noise. I’ve been so stressed and feeling so much anxiety that I’m unable to sleep till the early hours of the morning. What I’ve realized is that anxiety is a very normal part of life and there are some things we can all do cope a little better. Since I know many of you might be feeling the same way, I wanted to share some tips to help you manage anxiety and stress in times like this.
1. Take a brain break
One of the best ways to manage anxiety and stress is to take a brain break – which does not involve scrolling through social media. In fact, put the phone down, turn off the computer, and stay unplugged. Research has shown that staying plugged often induces anxiety since you’re constantly exposed to anxiety-provoking news/events all throughout the day.
Social media alone has been known to trigger anxiety as it can create an unhealthy cycle of comparing yourself to others. That said, it’s just better to take a brain break by being away from and out of touch with all that’s happening right now until you feel better.
2. Create a self-care routine
In my experience, I’ve learned that a healthy wellness and self-care routine is often the best cure for my anxiety. While so many people have advice on what constitutes as “self-care”, I advise experimenting with different solutions until you find an effective route for you.
For some, it involves meditating and yoga, some people like special herbal teas (like lettuce tea to treat insomnia) while others swear by journaling. I’ve even known people to indulge in all three. If you’re new to routines, I’d recommend starting with just one habit and stick to it for at least one week. This helps ensure that you don’t overwhelm yourself. You can then gauge if it’s working and add on new habits over time.
3. Take action
Anxiety comes from all walks of life, but it usually heightens when you’re worried about future events. While there are things we absolutely can’t control – like the recent news in the country – focus on things you can control. For instance, being prepared by stocking up on household essentials in case stores close down or having the proper means to protect yourself and your family in case of an emergency.
When it comes to things you can control, like managing a long to-do list or completing stressful work projects, the best solution is to start working on them, even if you don’t feel ready.
4. Be realistic and have conversations with yourself
Ever been down a tunnel of what if’s? Guilty. And it’s another anxiety-inducing situation many of us find ourselves in. I sometimes have the most bizarre and outlandish thoughts – many of which are unlikely to happen in real life. In moments like this, check in with yourself and challenge your thoughts. Some of the questions I like to ask myself is, “What’s the worst possible outcome? And what would I do in that situation?” The answers usually aren’t that bad if I’m being a realist. It’s been pretty effective in helping me manage my anxiety and stress.
5. Find healthy distractions
There’s nothing like a good distraction to get your mind off of the things bothering you. Activities that require focus and attention are generally most effective since they redirect your energy – like running, reading a book, dancing, and audiobooks. You can also try baking, art, and music… There are literally so many avenues you can go down.
Have you been more stressed than usual? I’d love to hear some of the ways you manage your anxiety and stress!blog tips