Each person experiences stress and anxiety in their day-to-day lives, and it’s essential to take steps to reduce these emotional health issues. When you experience anxiety and stress to a small to average degree, there are several things you can do to alleviate that tension naturally. This guide will help you maintain your mental clarity and energy levels as you alleviate your emotional health conditions.
Get More Exercise
One of the best things you can do for your emotional health is to get plenty of moderate to high-intensity exercise each day. When you’re faced with challenging situations, your brain will release a stress hormone called cortisol, which is intended to trigger the fight or flight response.
The problem is that you’re probably not engaging in a fight or fleeing for your life. As a result, cortisol will build up in your system and increase feelings of tension and anxiety. You can counteract this situation through exercise. As you engage in physical activity, the brain will release endorphins instead of cortisol. Endorphins are otherwise known as “feel-good” neurotransmitters, and they stimulate the pleasure center of your brain. If you feel good, you can’t also feel anxious or stressed.
Set Aside Time to Meditate
Meditation is a time-honored method for relieving stress and, even before science understood how it affected the brain, it was known to have beneficial effects on mental health. This is because it involves putting your mind into a deep state of relaxation that allows you to look inward instead of worrying about the external problems in your life. This doesn’t mean your thoughts won’t drift to everyday concerns.
As you realize you’re being distracted, refocus your thoughts on your breathing exercises, and let other worries fade away. As you meditate more frequently, you’ll find that your mind gets distracted less and less. You can enhance the meditative state by playing soothing music or lighting a scented candle. Before you begin meditating, be sure to eliminate distractions and find someplace where you can meditate undisturbed.
Take a Natural Supplement
There are many plants and natural foods that interact with brain chemistry in the same way that anti-depressant drugs affect the brain. The critical difference is that natural supplements won’t produce the same adverse side effects caused by drugs. For example, you can take a little MCT CBD oil to reduce anxiety without feeling any of the symptoms that drugs produce. Research has found that CBD oil effectively alleviates stress caused by SAD (seasonal affective disorder), public speaking, test-taking, and other types of stress. Omega-3 fatty acids and green tea supplements can also relax the mind and alleviate anxiety.
Some doctors recommend a kava kava supplement derived from the same name’s psychoactive plant. The plant belongs to the pepper family, and it’s commonly used as a sedative in the UK and US.
Take a Break From Your Daily Grind
On a day-to-day basis, there are many activities you may engage in without realizing that they’re contributing to the stress you feel. For example, cutting down on your caffeine intake can significantly decrease tension and anxiety. Any substance that acts as a stimulant will trigger the production of cortisol in the brain, so cutting down on those substances will have the opposite effect. You can also feel less stress by turning your mobile device off for a few hours.
Even if you don’t use your phone for work purposes, social media activity can cause you to feel anxious or tense. Research has found that the competition for popularity among all social media platforms increases the risks for depression, anxiety, and stress. Set the phone aside and engage in a relaxing hobby that you enjoy.
If you just spend that time watching your favorite movie, you’ll be giving your brain a much-needed break from the rest of the clutter in your life.
If you have tried these steps without success, you may want to consider talking to a therapist. While in therapy, you’ll explore the underlying causes of the anxiety and stress your experiencing. This will give your therapist the information they need to recommend other coping mechanisms that will be more effective in your situation.