5 Awesome Tips to Fight Stress and Anxiety
In today’s era, stress and anxiety are quite common for most people. Though some fortunate people don’t face them every day, they experience them some or the other time in life. But whether you experience them daily or occasionally, you hate them and want to get rid of them. Since there is an increasing demand for stress relief, scientists have found ways to calm down and relax, to fight stress and anxiety. Here are a few of them.
1. Breathing Exercises
Stress induces your sympathetic nervous system, and thereby signals your body to go into “fight-or-flight” mode. This mode activates the release of stress hormones and you start experiencing physical symptoms like fast breathing, increased heartbeat and constricted blood vessels.
In such a condition, deep breathing exercises can help induce your parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for relaxation.
Deep breathing exercises are of several types, including belly breathing, diaphragmatic breathing, paced respiration and abdominal breathing.
The ultimate goal of deep breathing is to concentrate your awareness on your respiration, due to which it becomes deeper and slower. When you breathe in such a way, i.e. deeply through your nose, your lungs expand to the full extent and your belly rises. Due to this, your heart rate slows down making you feel calmer than before.
You may be surprised to know that exercise is not just good for physical health but also for mental health. It may look contradictory, but the more the physical stress, the less will be your mental stress. Also remember that you should exercise regularly if you want the real benefits. If you are stressed up on a certain day and exercise only for that day, you won’t find much of relief.
A few reasons behind stress-relieving benefits of exercise are:
Improvement in Sleep: since exercise improves your sleep quality, you can feel less stressed up because stress and anxiety negatively affect your sleep.
Decrease in Stress Hormones: Exercise reduces the levels of stress hormones, like cortisol, over time. It also helps endorphins secretion. These are the chemicals that are natural painkillers and elevate your mood.
Increase in Confidence: By exercising regularly, you may feel confident because of your increased strength and thus, you may feel less stressed up and anxious.
3. Laugh Out Loud
A hearty laugh is the least likely to accompany anxiety. A loud laugh relieves your stress response and relaxes your strained muscles. In the long run, laughter can even help enhance your mood and immunity.
Read funny books, watch comedy TV shows or films, accompany friends that make you laugh and laugh to your heart’s content.
4. Spend Time with Your Dear Ones
Love is a precious thing if you have it and you shouldn’t miss it. Love and care of people who really love you soothes you and develop a sense of support in you.
Spending time with your friends, children, parents and even pets releases oxytocin, a compound responsible for stress relief. This effect is known as “tend and befriend” and is exactly opposite of fight-or-flight reaction
Spending time with your friends, children, parents and even pets releases oxytocin, a compound responsible for stress relief. This effect is known as “tend and befriend” and is exactly opposite of fight-or-flight reaction.
A study has found that women and men with the least social connections had higher chances to experience stress, depression and anxiety.
5. Avoid Procrastination
It’s often seen that we postpone things due to laziness and once the tasks start piling up, stress builds up too. Develop the habit of making to-do lists and arrange tasks by priority. Make sure the deadlines are not beyond your capabilities. It’s better to work slowly than not working at all. If you feel tired in between the work, take a short walk around and start again. This will make you feel more responsible and respectable, which in turn will reduce your stress.
Remember that stress is largely a mental state and you can throw it away with simple breathing techniques, exercises and entertainment. So, be stress-free and enjoy life!