Since 2003, I’ve had issues with anxiety. I’ve learned over the years that there are different ways I can cope with anxiety attacks and sudden feelings of overwhelming uneasiness.
The first time I ever remember feeling really anxious for no apparent reason was my freshman year of college. I was standing beside my desk and my heart started racing. I felt short of breath, dizzy, and sweaty. I ended up crying hysterically and running to my friend’s dorm room. Once I calmed down, I went to the student health center to find out what was wrong with me. The nurse said, “It’s anxiety” and made me an appointment with the school psychologist.
With the good, there are the bad. Alcohol, caffeine, and a lack of sleep intensify my emotions. I am best if I talk through my feelings, get lots of rest, and reflect on my current situation. Here are some ways I’ve found to quiet my anxiety.
1. Write down thoughts about your anxiety.
There are so many topics I would love to talk about on this blog, but I never want to get too personal. I have a small journal where I keep random thoughts, make lists, and plan out my life when it’s feeling hectic. Writing things down makes me feel organized and more at peace.
2. Tidy up
I am definitely a manic cleaner. My house can go from disaster area to spotless in an hour. When I am feeling particularly stressed, I clean like a madwoman. When I am done, I feel like I’ve worked out a lot of my demons.
3. Get moving
Exercise is one of the most natural remedies for anxiety and stress. If you’re someone who can’t be left alone with their thoughts, like me, then workout classes or loud music is where you find a release.
4. Bubble bath
My favorite kind of bubble bath includes espom salt, lavender essential oil, a few candles, a book, and a glass of wine. Oh… and my toddler nowhere to be found.
5. Fresh air
Sometimes all I have to do to ease a little bit of anxiety is to step outside and breathe in the fresh air. Most recently I have found myself sitting in one of our rocking chairs on the front porch. I practice deep breathing and focus on happy thoughts.
6. Hang out with a furry friend
Mcmuffin is and will always be one of my greatest companions when I’m not feeling like myself. He is quiet, soothing, and does not judge me. Sometimes I believe he knows when I truly need him because I’ll find him curled up next to me in the middle of the night during a bad week. Animals can be so therapeutic, except when they’re dipping their dirty paw into your water glass.