As scary as it may sound, the fact of the matter is that anxiety has become a norm in today’s excessively fast-paced life. Anxiety disorder is one of the most commons disorders across the world. According to Psych Central, nearly one in five Americans have been diagnosed with some form of anxiety disorder, including panic attacks, post-traumatic stress disorder, social phobias and obsessive-compulsive disorders.
Even though an anxiety disorder stems from a variety of factors, including genetics, environment, brain chemistry, and life events, there are certain steps that an individual can undertake to curb their anxiety. Of course, certain situations call for the use of anti-anxiety drugs, especially for chronic worriers. For mild sufferers of anxiety, however, following are the most effective anti-anxiety lifestyle changes they can make to address an anxiety disorder:
Step one is regular exercise. As per extensive research on anxiety and depression, exercise has found to reduce the symptoms of depression and anxiety among people. It contributes to a person’s emotional well-being and improves their mood. Any form of physical exercise, be it yoga or running, enables the body to produce brain chemicals serotonin and endorphins that help alleviate anxiety.
In addition, exercise also makes a person physically fit, which gives a boost to their self-esteem and confidence level.
Good nutrition is important for a person’s physical as well as mental health. Therefore, maintaining a well-balanced, nutritious diet is key to alleviating anxiety. A diet devoid of essential nutrients, such as protein, vegetables, fruit, and multivitamins fails to provide essential nutrients necessary to produce brain neurotransmitters, thus causing a person’s anxiety level to surge.
In regards to diet, it is important to limit the intake of excessive sugar and caffeine. Both caffeine and refined sugar have an adverse impact on blood sugar levels, which leads to anxious thoughts.
Perhaps one of the most effective ways to beat anxiety is to find a purpose in life. Easier said than done, yet research shows that people with a sense of purpose in life are able to handle negative, uncertain situations better. A person with a strong sense of purpose is strong willed, and is usually able to overcome all kinds of obstacles life throws at them.
Spirituality can also help anxious individuals. People with a strong spiritual connection are often able to gain perspective in life and find meaning in adverse situations.
One of the major causes of anxiety and depression is loneliness. Having a robust social support system with meaningful relationships will reduce isolation and help an individual deal with anxiety in a better manner. Reaching out to family and friends or meeting new people helps an anxious person find support during hard times.
Growing in popularity, mindfulness is a therapeutic technique where one is aware of their state, thoughts and body movements. This form of meditation aims at breaking free of one’s anxious thoughts by living in the moment.
Instead of ignoring or suppressing anxious feelings, mindfulness encourages individuals to observe and acknowledge them. Yet, it takes a lot of practice to benefit from this form of therapy.
While mindfulness has hit the mainstream recently, daily journaling has been advocated by therapists for years. Every time a person’s anxiety triggers, they should write down their thoughts in a journal. Eventually, journaling will help them recognize common patterns and the root cause of their anxiety.
Avoiding toxic people or investing less time in them greatly reduces a person’s anxiety. Establishing boundaries is pivotal, coupled with choosing the right people to spend time with. Anyone who triggers a person’s worries and fears is not likely to help with their anxiety.
Anxiety is a serious mental disorder that should not be left ignored. If a person’s symptoms spiral out of control, it is best to seek professional help. For more information on anxiety and other health issues, please visit www.verdure.me. Click here to access the online lifestyle magazine.