When you experience stress and anxiety, it can literally have a crippling effect on your disposition, causing your body and mind to shift gears into overdrive. This, in turn, weakens your functionality, clouding your judgment and making you feel physically ill. Anxiety is a direct reaction to stress.
Have you ever felt so stressed that you can’t even finish a sentence? Pacing up and down in a dizzy panic, contemplating multiple ways in which a situation may play out. Anxiety can be so dominant at times that it can have detrimental effects on your daily life. It can interfere with your performance at work, your relationships, appetite, and sleep. A lot of people turn to overeating, smoking, alcohol and even drugs to deal with it.
No matter how daunting it may seem, there are many alternative ways to manage stress and anxiety, and always remember, you’re not alone. According to Anxiety UK, 1 in 10 people are likely to have a ‘disabling anxiety disorder’ at some point in their life. According to experts, some of the psychological symptoms include:
- Inner tension
- Advanced agitation
- A strong fear of losing control
- Fearing that something bad is about to happen to you, like a seizure, heart attack or blackout
- Intense irritation
- Feeling detached and demotivated
Common physical symptoms are as follows:
- Increase in heartbeat
- Shortness of breath/hyperventilation
- Tight chest
- Dry mouth
- Random Nausea
- Sudden urge to pass urine/empty bowels
- Profuse sweating
- Pins and needles
An Indian spiritual leader by the name of Gaur Gopal Das recently said, “Do you have a problem in life? No? Then why worry? Do you have a problem in life? Yes? Can you do something about it? Yes? Then why worry? Do you have a problem in life? Yes? Can you do something about it? No? Then why worry? Is it not? Why worry? Why are we constantly bogging our minds down with anxiety that is just absolutely not allowing us to have peace of mind?”
There’s a lot of truth in what he said, but sometimes it’s just not that simple. So here are a few valuable ways in which you can better deal with stress and hopefully combat anxiety:
A fantastic way of combating stress is by staying on top of your priorities. One of the most common things we do when stressed, is we tend to procrastinate. It’s ironic, because procrastination eats away at your time, causing you to miss deadlines, or drop the ball on important tasks, which will obviously cause you a great deal of stress. Organisation will help you stay ahead, so try to develop positive habits, such as:
- Creating daily lists based on priority (and stick to them!).
- Set yourself targets (realistic goals).
- Work on tasks for long, uninterrupted amounts of time.
- Try not to multitask (focus on one thing at a time).
- Reward yourself when you complete a task.
What came first? Stress or lack of sleep? A recent study from UP (University of Pennsylvania) discovered that sleep deprivation causes an increase in feelings of stress and anger. It’s imperative that you sleep for at least 7 hours a day. Are you wondering how? There are a billion things running through your mind, so how exactly are you supposed to fall asleep. Here are a few tips:
- Follow a sleep routine. Go to bed and wake up at the same time every single day. This regulates your body clock and will assist in helping you stay asleep throughout the night.
- Exercise frequently. Make sure to stay active – incorporating this into your lifestyle helps with getting a decent night’s rest. Exercise also has so many other benefits.
- Try not to take naps, even on the weekends. Routine is key when it comes to getting the rest your body and mind deserves.
There are natural solutions to help quell stress and anxiety. There is great healing in nature, just being in the wilderness does wonders for stress levels and it’s no surprise that nature itself has her own remedies. It’s worth researching plants such as Ashwagandha, Rhodiola and Valerian Root and make sure to try the following:
- Drink green tea – it is high in L-theanine which is an amino acid. According to a study by the NCBI, L-theanine is good for reducing psychological and physiological states under stress.
- Magnesium contains properties that help with insomnia. Increase your intake.
- INOFEM. An amazing, all-natural supplement that contains the bio-active form of Myo-Inositol, a pseudo-vitamin compound that belongs to the Vitamin B Complex group. It Supports the nervous system and may help with stress and anxiety.
It’s not all black and white but try to take a step back from time to time and think about the fact that you’ve been given the gift of life. Stressors aren’t necessarily always a negative thing. Sometimes high demands bring out the best in people. Try to take a deep breath and gather your thoughts before immediately considering the worst.