If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you know I’ve struggled with anxiety for a few years and I’m fairly certain stress is inevitable in everybody’s lives. Although I once suffered from terrible anxiety on a daily basis, I’ve made considerable moves towards battling it naturally over the years. I don’t like the idea of taking medications to solve my problems, so I’ve made stride to get rid of my stress and anxiety naturally, and you should too! While I’m not a doctor, these are just a few tips I’ve learned over the years, from the easiest to the hardest.
Use Essential Oils for Stress Relief
You’ve got to trust me here. I never believed in essential oils, even after using lavender for sleep purposes and lemon in my water. But then I used the Stress Away oil from Young Living (this is not an ad) and it changed my life. I swear! Alone it smells amazing, but I apply it to the back of my neck when I’m feeling an anxiety attack coming on or a considerable amount of stress. Almost immediately when I smell it my body begins to relax, but about 20 minutes after I put it on, my heart rate lowers, I breathe slower and my mood improves. I don’t know how it it works, but it honestly feels like magic. I can’t love on this product enough and I have shared it with almost every single co-worker and friend who suffers!
This one is easier said than done. I don’t know the exact science or correlation behind it, but I’ve found that when I drink strong coffee (like iced coffee) I tend to have a bit more anxiety or worry throughout the day, especially if I consume it before a presentation. I believe it has something to do with my heart rate. Naturally, I have a faster than normal heart rate and drinking coffee only speeds it up, which often leads to the panic attack. If I drink caffeine late at night, it doesn’t keep me awake but it does increase the chances that I’ll wake up with anxiety as soon as my eyes open.
Get a Good Workout In
Runner’s high is a real thing! My mood can do a complete 360 if I get in a good workout. Endorphins this, endorphins that. Just make sure you’re not overdoing it, which could really increase your already elevated heart rate and push you into faint zone (from experience). My favorites for getting the anxious energy out: hot yoga, cycle and a long run outdoors with my dog.
Take “Me” Time
This is a huge one that I’ve really learned the importance of over the past few years. Personally, I have a few things I do at least once a month and somethings I make sure to do once a week. Monthly, I get a 60-90 minute massage at a local massage club at which I’ve been a member for the past 2 years. It’s not super expensive, it’s something that I’ve budgeted for and it really, really works. It’s almost always perfect scheduled (although I schedule a month in advance) on some of my hardest weeks and makes me feel so relaxed and indulged. Other things that I like to incorporate are bubble baths, reading in bed on the weekend, alone, before it’s dark outside (I know, what a luxury) and getting my nails done. It’s less about the activity and more about engaging with a relaxing activity while soaking in your thoughts and feelings. Hippie-dippie I know, but it really helps to be more intentional with your alone time.
Identify and Remove the Stressor
Even more difficult than cutting out caffeine, sometimes the best way to reduce your stress is to find out what’s causing it and quit it! I’ve suffered from debilitating work, relationship and self-conscience anxiety over the years. Most of the time this anxiety started at once place in my life and manifested across all other aspects to the point where it was difficult to pinpoint exactly why I was so upset all of the time. It honestly feels so freeing when you have that a-ha moment and you realize the cause of the anxiety and you’re able to counteract it by eliminating that stress in your life. I highly recommend it! You are ultimately in control of your mood and your mind, so if something is not serving you well, kick it to the curb.
How have you been able to deal with stress and anxiety? Leave your tips below or tweet me at @rachelregal_!