It is well known to experts that the brain works best when it is relaxed. Negative emotions, such as anxiety and worry, lead to mental inertia. Learning how to laugh is really important.
Feeling relaxed is essential for your overall wellbeing. Without having the ability to relax we cannot deal with intense situations. Being cool under fire increases the likelihood of you having success. With a relaxed mind energy is expended on completing a task, instead of worrying about it.
Anxiety can be difficult to define due to its subjective nature. There are, however, many common themes that link most people’s experiences of anxiety together.Anxiety is a vicious circle of thoughts, sensations and behaviours.
The origins of an anxious mood lie in your thoughts, some of which you may not even be aware of! These thoughts lead to reactions in the body, causing physical sensations and affecting your behaviour. An anxious person tends to think more distressed thoughts, maintaining a vicious circle.
To beat anxiety we need to take a holistic approach that corrects the mind and body. When it comes to arresting the physical symptoms of anxiety, you should consider the following: Essentially you’re trying to stop anxiety symptoms escalating by reinforcing your bodies calming mechanisms. Breathing and relaxation are two simple and effective methods, which become even more effective when done together.
Whether you are in an anxious mood, you are likely to be breathing too quickly. This upsets the balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide in your blood, leading to unpleasant symptoms of anxiety and panic.
Slow down your breathing and aim to breathe 10-12 times per minute. Pause between breaths and time yourself. You’ll naturally breathe slower through your nose rather than your mouth. Try to exhale for as long as you inhale.
Anxious breathing tends to push out the chest only. Instead breathe from your diaphragm, steadily taking air right down into the bottom of your lungs and pushing your stomach out.
Prevention is better than the cure, so avoid behaviours, and situation s that contribute towards anxiety. If your anxiety is tied to particular situations (such as giving presentations), the only way you can learn to deal with these is to face them. If you avoid them because you’re anxious, you’ll feel even worse about it next time.
Build up to the situation by imagining it. If you notice yourself feeling anxious, pause and do some breathing exercises and physical relaxation. Unfold the scenario and imagine yourself coping with the fear and getting through successfully. If necessary you can do these in public without people noticing.
You may also be surprised to hear that eating the right foods can boost your mental health. This should not be surprising because, after all, we are what we eat. Eat regular meals, including breakfast (even if it’s only a banana), to keep blood sugar levels steady.
This way you avoid the dreaded ’11 am’ hunger strike that gets you running to the vending machine like a greyhound after a whippet. Try to avoid junk food and sugary or fatty snacks. These foods may boost your mood in the short term, but in the long term they will make you very miserable indeed. It should come as no surprise, then , to hear that you should also limit your alcohol and caffeine intake.
If you are a big smoker, then you should also Reduce or stop smoking (it feels calming but physically it causes your body stress). Destress your body by giving it what it needs, maintain a balance of work, rest and play. Build 20-30 minutes of exercise into your daily routine, even if it’s just walking around the corner. You will notice that even a little physical activity will help you sleep a whole lot better.
These are the first steps you should take with the physical symptoms of anxiety, but what about the mental aspects? How can we develop a relaxed state of mind? Begin by thinking of a time when you felt completely focused and relaxed in an activity.
Think about the thoughts, feelings and emotions that you experienced. Recreate the experience in your head until you can specifically pinpoint each individual emotion and thought that you had. The more practice you get a feeling these things the easier it is going to be to activate them in the next real situation that demands it.
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