Even when you are trying your very best to live a life that is in line with your dreams and your heart, there may still be times where you get stressed out! I can completely relate to that!
Below are some strategies that I have found useful for everyday stress & anxiety. I’ve divided them into Physical, Mental and Spiritual techniques to make things clearer. I hope they help!
Exercise – get those endorphins pumping & work off all of that extra anxious energy!
Eat Well – wholefoods will make you feel better, guaranteed! I’m talking whole-grains, activated nuts, veggies & leafy greens! No one ever felt good after an ice-cream (we’re looking for long term feel-goods here!). See Dr. McDougalls advice on how a Wholefood Plant Based way of eating can change your life and allow you to regain your health!
Have a Mental Break
Talk It Out - talking, problem solving and sharing with another person can really help! Seek professional help if you need it, there is nothing wrong with that, in fact I think it is very brave. If you have an empathetic friend or loved one to turn to that is perfect. Never underestimated the power of sharing and getting that anxiety out of your body.
Get In Touch With YOU - Journal, meditate - really think about what you want in life. What do you need to change? What is stressing you out? Can you do something about it? What are you grateful for that you already have? Write down your goals and see if you are heading in the direction you desire.
Alone Time – do something just for you, a solo walk, a hot bath, just sit in a room by yourself and do nothing if you need to! I often find that I feel especially anxious when I have been very busy or social and haven’t made time for myself, almost as if all those thoughts get caught up there and go around in circles, until I have time to sort through them one by one. Me time really helps!
Nature Time! Go outside and connect with nature, whether that be through hiking, going to the beach or just sitting in a park. This will really help ground you & clear your mind!
Feed Your Soul
Deep Breaths - it’s time to focus on letting go and breathing slowly and deeply. I know I have very shallow breathing when I am stressed. Please find a few tips in the video below by Meghan Livingstone:
Grounding – super important! Often when we feel anxious, we are up in the clouds chasing our thoughts around. Grounding will allow you to bring your conscious awareness back into your body so that you are fully in the moment and aware of what is really going on around you. It can help you break the anxiety spiral that is going on in your head. The best way is always going to be putting your feet on the earth (or grass, or sand!) and feeling the connection there. If you are inside, this is my favourite way to ground when Mother Nature is a bit far away:
Close your eyes and take 5 slow deep breaths. Imagine long tree roots going from your feet into the ground, connecting you to the earth. These tree roots travel all the way into the centre of the earth and anchor there, you are now grounded. Anytime you feel yourself drifting upwards into an anxiety spiral, focus on this grounding cord and repeat ‘I am safe, I am grounded’.
Meditation – this is the best way to hear your inner voice, and get clear and grounded! Highly recommend the free ‘Insight Timer’ App for this. If you are at work (or somewhere where you can’t sit on the ground cross-legged and chant for an hour), here is a quick exercise that I find super helpful:
Find somewhere quiet and be still. Close your eyes, take a few deep breaths while you examine your body with your mind. Try to figure out where in your body you are holding onto this anxiety or stress. You may see a dark patch or a blockage, or you may just feel a heaviness in a certain (sometimes random) area. Breathe into that area with acceptance and love, and allow the heaviness to fall away. If you feel a lot of blockages, it might be a good idea to set aside some time for a longer meditation.
Affirmations – depending on the cause of your anxiety, affirmations can be very beneficial. You may not fully believe what you are saying to start with, but if you say them daily and really try to believe that what you are saying is real (a little visualization helps too!), then they have a huge potential to change your mindset over time - and therefore your life. Repeat each one a few times daily (or more if you like) until they really start to sink in! Here are some examples, but you can tailor them to help you with any issue you are facing:
‘I am safe’
‘I love myself’
‘I have the strength to improve my life’
‘I deserve to be happy’
‘I am fully in the now’
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