5 Natural Ways to Ease Anxiety
Exercise, Meditation, Yoga
- Thirty cumulative minutes a day of any type of physical activity relieves anxiety by flooding your bloodstream with feel-good hormones. Exercise also fosters deeper sleep.
- Studies show meditation actually changes the brain. Brain scans of regular meditators show increased activity in the area of brain associated with joy and equanimity. Meditating also creates silence and stillness, increasing mental focus and the ability to stay in the present moment.
- Yoga is a hybrid, giving you both physical activity and meditation.
Inhaling essential oils can alter brain activity. Seek out scents that induce calm, such as lavender, jasmine, rose, and sandalwood. Use scent as a part of a calming ritual like a warm bath with lavender oil before bed with a cup of chamomile tea. Also, carry a small bottle with you to use while taking breathing breaks throughout your day.
Breathe. Release. Repeat.
Deep breathing slows the body’s rhythms and restores calm.
- Schedule your cell phone to vibrate every one to two hours.
- Take five deep, relaxing breathes. Breathing in deeply through your nose and exhaling out of your mouth with a sigh (or a sound, if you’re alone). On each exhalation, visualize any tension or fatigue leaving your body.
Set aside ten minutes a day as your designated time to worry about anything that is on your mind. Choose a place, such as a garage, a pantry, or a walk-in closet, away from your daily routines. If anxiety starts to creep in at other times, remind yourself to deal with it during your “Stress Session” ONLY!
Herbal Remedies and Therapy
A combination of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and natural remedies may work just as well as prescription medications and with fewer side effects. Talk to your PCP before taking herbal remedies, as they are not for everyone and they may interact with your prescription medications.
- Passionflower (Passion incarnate)—A powerful herbal relaxation aid with zero side effects. It comes in capsule or tincture form.
- Valerian Extract—A sleep aid that typically works within thirty minutes of consumption and is not habit forming.
- Green Tea Extract—Contains the amino acid L-theanine, which produces anti-anxiety effects.