Anxiety is something many of us deal with on a daily basis. However, there are individuals who are incapacitated with constant thoughts of anxiety; so much that the daily activities of life are impacted. These people cannot find peace of mind and need to actively try and get their anxiety controlled.
While medication is available to help with anxiety, it should not be the first line of treatment you seek out, as they come with lots of adverse effects and cause the user to build up a dependence. The better option is to seek out natural ways to calm the anxiety – those without lingering negative effects and which are likely to help you cope better in the long run.
Let’s explore what you best options are:
Meditation should be the core of a natural strategy to manage anxiety, since it helps ground your irrational fears. While we all have an apprehension of the future, meditation helps us to take each moment at a time. The goal of meditation is not to block out negative emotions, but to help us learn to not linger on them.
Get started first thing tomorrow morning – just sit peacefully for 5 minutes at the beginning of your day, let thoughts enter your mind freely, but do not let them linger. The end goal is to have control over your thoughts and not allow them to negatively ruin your day.
Sleep Enough At Night
Lack of sleep causes your brain to go haywire – playing all sorts of tricks on you and decreasing your emotional tolerance as a whole. You may find that following even just one night of sleep loss your performance will decrease, and you will be prone to anger and agitation. Strive for a minimum of 7 hours nightly to keep your brain chemistry on point.
Exercise is one of the best medicines we have at our disposal, as there are few things that are comparable to the range of health benefits it offers. Exercise, similar to sleep, helps to naturally manage anxiety and depression, by increasing levels of feel-good and stress-busting chemicals known as endorphins. Anxiety is partially worsened by high levels of adrenalin, and even though exercise does temporarily increase these levels, the endorphins temper its effects and leave your mood on a high for hours afterwards.
Eat Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate has numerous benefits on health, and is not your typical sugar-laden variety. Dark chocolate is particularly effective in reducing the impact that the stress hormone cortisol has on our body, including precipitating anxiety. Its mode of action is unique, as it relays relaxation from the stomach to the brain.
Try To Get Sunlight Daily
People in colder climates have been observed to develop a condition known as SAD (seasonal affective disorder), which comes on during the winter months when sun exposure is limited. Symptoms of SAD include depression, irritability, and increased anxiety, all of which resolve upon exposure to sunlight. If you do live in such a climate and are unable to get exposure to the sun when winter comes, artificial light therapy also helps improve symptoms.
Consume More Omega-3 Fats
Omega-3 fatty acids are strong anti-oxidants, and may help to stem the cause of your anxiety. Typically, the two hormones that are elevated are cortisol and adrenalin, both of which respond negatively to the influence of oxidation. Omega-3 fats combat excessive oxidation and are anti-inflammatory, helping boost production of serotonin and dopamine, and helping keep your anxiety response normal.