If I were a betting lady, I'd bet there isn't a day that goes by where you don't hear the name coronavirus. Heck, by now, the word alone could send you into an anxiety spiral. Am I right, or am I right?!?
If your anxiety has been maxed out lately, know you're not alone. I'd be willing to bet (here I go betting again) that just about everyone floating on this giant rock through space is feeling overly anxious.
I mean, how can we not, right?!? Well, friend, I am here to help you take hold of your anxiety before it takes hold of you.
Below I am sharing six tips and tricks to help you reduce the paralyzing grip that your anxiety has over you. If you're ready, let's dive in.
1. LIMIT NEWS CONSUMPTION
I can't stress this enough, limit the amount of time you spend a day consuming the news. I'm talking 10 minutes or less a day. Sadly we live in a culture where negative news sales, so naturally, the news sources are going to share negative events. What happens when we spend our days consuming negative events? We begin thinking negatively.
If you can't live without checking the news, here's my tip for you. Designate a set news watching time every day. Preferably not first thing in the morning (because who wants to start their day on a wrong note) or before bed (because your amygdala won't allow you to fall asleep if you are worrying). Limit the length of consumption to 10 minutes or less. No exceptions.
Rest assured, that if something terrible is happening that you must know about, there is a strong chance someone close to you will notify you.
2. MAKE A PLAN
Worries are great for helping you identify a solution to potential future problem. Where worries go wrong is when you become fixated on them. With all the unknown and uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus, it's natural to have increased worries.
To help reduce your anxiety, identify the worrisome thoughts that are activating your anxiety response. Once you have identified your worries, make a plan. Brainstorm ideas for how you will handle the worry if it was to occur. Once you have a plan in place, move on from that worry. If you catch that worry popping back into your mind, remind yourself of your plan and move on again.
3. TAKE A BREATH
Breath is the enemy of anxiety and my guess is if you're anxious, you probably aren't breathing. Say what?!? Not breathing? Yup! When you're anxious, you tend to engage in shallow breathing, or you hold your breath. This only adds fuel to your already raging anxiety fire.
To help activate your relaxation response, you want to make sure you're engaging in deep, slow, long breaths. No clue how to improve your breathing? No worries! Click here to learn how to breathe from your belly.
4. TAKE CONTROL
Right now, you may be feeling as if you have no control over your life. Depending on where you live, you may be forced to hunker down at home. You may even be pinched for cash and panicking on how you'll pay your bills. Rightfully so as these are some crazy times were are living in.
One way to help reduce anxiety surrounding your sense of no control is to create control. Identify areas of your life where you can exert some control. I've noticed over the years that when my anxiety rears it's ugly head, I tend to go on a crazy spring cleaning spree (even in the dead of winter).
There is something calming about knowing I have control over my home and areas within it. I can control whether it's cleanliness or chaos (chaos tends to spike my anxiety). If you're struggling with the lack of control over your life, I recommend busting out your best jams and going to town on your house. You'd be surprised at how much it helps.
5. RELAX YOUR MUSCLES
Muscle tension is a common symptom when anxious. It's due to the activation of your fight-flight-freeze response preparing your muscles to respond to danger, but what happens if there is no danger to respond to?
That's when relaxation comes in. When you relax your muscles you send a signal of safety to your amygdala, telling it to stand down (remember your amygdala is responsible for activating your anxiety).
Try taking an Epsom salt bath to help loosen your tense muscles. The magnesium from the Epsom salt is an added bonus. To take it up a notch, lite some calming candles and put on some relaxing music. You can also recruit your partner to massage the area you carry the most tension. No partner? No problem! Gently massage your tense muscles with a calming oil. Need an oil? I gotcha! Try this one out from my fav all natural non-toxic company Primally Pure. Added bonus, you get 10% off your order when you use code COURAGE10 at checkout. Happy relaxing!
6. MOVE YOUR BODY
I'd strongly encourage you to avoid all gyms at all costs. Gyms tend to be a breeding ground for germs. However, don't let this be an excuse to become a couch potato.
To help reduce anxiety, be sure you are getting your heart rate up and pumping for a minimum of twenty minutes a day. If you live somewhere where you can run outdoors away from others, take off on a brisk walk or jog. Stuck indoors? Give Kirra Stokes or TMAC Fitness a try.
Are you tired of living with crippling anxiety? Do your overwhelming symptoms hold you back from living your best life? Are you ready to feel at peace? If you are nodding your head in agreement, and thinking, “Heck yes I am” then this freebie is for you.
I put my favorite go-to anxiety coping skills into an easy to follow 4-week action plan. If you're ready to reduce the power anxiety has over your life, be sure to sign up now. Life's to short to let anxiety drive your ship!