Stress and anxiety can affect your physical and mental health, taking a toll on longevity. Still, you can get relief and benefit your health and well-being.
It’s been a tough few years with the pandemic, unemployment, financial fears, divisive politics, the war in Ukraine, police brutality, racial tensions, and global warming. So if you’re feeling anxious and stressed, it’s no wonder! You’re not alone.
There are many natural ways to find relief, and they’re all easy to implement. This article will explore 20 ways to alleviate unease and tension and get you on track to a healthy, serene lifestyle.
Exercise Gets Stress-Relieving Endorphins Pumping
Regular exercise to relieve stress continues to lead the list. That’s because it decreases stress hormones, such as cortisol, and releases endorphins. That, in turn, improves your sleep quality. But, of course, any exercise routine will work, from dancing to walking to yoga (more on that later).
CBD Works With Your Body’s Endocannabinoid System to Help Alleviate Anxiety
Continually emerging research indicates that CBD modifies your body’s serotonin signaling system. Research also shows low serotonin levels correlate to a more significant stress response. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that shapes stress-coping strategies and helps reduce cortisol through the endocannabinoid system.
CBD may decrease cortisol. The research findings suggest that people who took CBD had reduced anxiety levels. CBD can naturally improve mood, soothe anxiety, and modulate stress. Several studies report CBD is a remedy for anxiety.
Shine a Light on Stress
Scented candles could reduce your perceptions of stress and anxiety; the same goes for aromatherapy’s essential oils and incense. Consider lavender, rose, orange blossom, geranium, and others.
Journaling Can Get It All out of Your Head and Give You Relief
Write it out if you’re feeling anxious or stressed. A gratitude journal can help keep you positive. Positive thinking counteracts anxiousness and feelings of stress.
Socialize Because Having Others Around Is Imperative to Our Mental Health
Having a network of friends, especially for women, creates feelings of belonging and self-worth, which is a considerable boon in troubled times. Conversely, one study showed men and women who lack social connections are more likely to be anxious and depressed.
Laughter Truly Is the Best Medicine When It Comes to Emotional Struggles
Laughing relieves your stress response and reduces tension. Over time, laughing can help improve your mood and immune response.
So, get together with your funniest friends and family members, binge-watch Friends or Modern Family on Netflix (because, you know, they are just never not funny), and ask Alexa to fart for you (one can never help but laugh at 8-year-old fart humor), read a laugh-out-loud kind of book, or listen to a funny podcast. There are so many ways you can get the giggling going, and you should because it will do you a lot of good.
Set Boundaries: Relieve Your Anxiety and Help out Another
It’s too easy for your life commitments to pile up, but when you allow others to dump theirs on you, too, it becomes a whole new ballgame. Learn the beautiful art of saying “no.”
Be selective about what you take on, who you let into your life, and what you agree to do, hear, or be subjected to.
And make time for you to reduce your stress levels.
Avoid Procrastination: It’s a Direct Link to Tension, Stress, and Anxiety
Set your priorities for the day or week’s to-do list. Staying on top of tasks makes you less anxious and stressed about completing everything. Give yourself the time to complete your work, and you won’t have to put out fires later.
A Yoga Practice Can Release Physical and Spiritual Tension
Yoga increases your body and breath awareness and improves your mindfulness. In addition, research shows yoga can enhance relaxation; it may be as good for your anxiety and stress as drugs because of its effect on your nervous system.
Mindfulness practices put you in the moment. Being present helps fight negative thinking that can bring on anxiety, perhaps through improved self-esteem.
Techniques include cognitive behavior therapy, stress reduction, yoga, deep breathing, and meditation.
Snuggle up to Warm and Fuzzy the Fear and Anxiety Away
Physical contact like hugs and cuddling releases oxytocin and lowers cortisol, which means less stress and anxiety for everyone involved!
Music Makes the World a Happier Place
Mellow music and nature’s sounds induce relaxation and decrease blood pressure, heart rate, and stress hormones. There’s a reason Chris Cross and Enya have been famous. New Age, classical, and indigenous music are also calming, often incorporated into relaxation and meditation music. Even a touch of rousing rock ‘n roll is enough to chill you out.
Your parasympathetic nervous system controls your relaxation response. Deep breathing exercises (belly, abdominal, diaphragmatic, and paced breathing) help calm your PNS. Focus on a slow, deep breath through your nose to expand your lungs, then slowly and fully exhale to calm your heart rate and soothe your nerves.
Adopt a Pet: Your Furry Friend Will Soothe Your Stress Levels
A pet gives you purpose, keeps you active, and provides companionship — all things that help reduce stress and anxiety. In addition, the interaction between you and your furry family member helps release oxytocin, helping maintain a positive mood.
Take time for tea
Several herbal teas, and green tea, are known to have calming effects on stress and anxiety: lemon balm, chamomile, and valerian root are the top contenders.
Also, consider a cup of lavender or rose petal tea. Green tea may help reduce stress and anxiety by increasing your serotonin levels.
Many CBD-enhanced teas are available on the market; double the stress release in one cup of bliss!
As the old saying goes, “you are what you eat.”
Our daily diet can make a massive difference in the way we feel.
The proverbial colloquialism, ‘you are what you eat,’ means that you must consume good, whole, healthy things to be fit and healthy in mind, body, and spirit.
- Ditch caffeine and alcohol to reduce their adverse effects on your stress levels.
- Omega-3 fatty acids could help reduce your anxiety symptoms and subsequent feelings of stress.
- Complex carbs tell your brain to make more serotonin.
Meditation makes the mind and spirit feel calm.
Meditation doesn’t require much time; even if you only have 5 minutes on the bus, you can use meditation to induce calm, peaceful feelings.
Meditation can give you a new perspective and help you build stress management skills while increasing imagination, creativity, patience, and tolerance. You can take a meditation class, look up techniques online, or download any number of great apps for your smart device.
Calm and Headspace are leading apps to help you meditate and improve your sleep. The apps, among other things, offer guided meditations, breathing exercises, music, and classes on calming your stress and anxiety. VeryWellMind rates Calm, Insight Timer, and Headspace as the three top-rated apps (in that order).
Bedtime Stories Are for Grown-Ups Too
If it works for the kids, a read-aloud bedtime story will work for the adults too.
Full of descriptive prose, these stories are written to put you to sleep—literally. Also, the soothing voices of Matthew McConaughey will encourage you to drift off to the Land of Nod.
Several apps feature sleep stories, guided meditations, and affirmations, but you can also find these things on Audible.
Being one of those whose head never shuts up, I find that a good story before I go to sleep lets my mind engage in something other than life’s daily worries, enough so that I can relax, detach and get to sleep.
Learning to hypnotize yourself with your voice or thoughts is a great stress management tool. A hypnotic state is a deeply relaxed state that fights tension and induces relaxation. It’s easy and affordable, and it has long-term effects.
Books, videos, apps, and professionals can help you learn to use this relaxation technique to counter stress and anxiety.
In addition to relaxation and stress relief, you can also use hypnosis to work on issues you’d like to address, such as smoking cessation, weight loss, manifestation, self-esteem, and more.
Consider Hiring a Life-coach
A life coach can help you identify blocks, face challenges, and see opportunities.
Both anxiety and stress are mental and sometimes physical responses to how we feel about ourselves or the situations in our lives.
If we look at things differently, understand what raises our stress or anxiety levels, and learn to respond and think differently, those anxious feelings will naturally subside.
A good life coach can help us by asking the right questions and prompting us to find the answer we all have within ourselves.
Consult a Therapist
If none of these tips for natural ways to beat stress and anxiety work for you, it may mean you have more severe anxiety issues that stem from childhood trauma or life experiences.
As a result, it may be time to consider therapy. If anxiety and stress severely restrict your daily life, a therapist can help you sort through causes and develop coping techniques.
Stress and Anxiety Need Not Rule Your World: Getting Relief is Easy
You can take many natural, easy actions to alleviate anxiety, depression, and stress; you needn’t break the bank to implement them. The remedies are readily available and proven to help, from yoga and meditation to CBD and tea. Get the relief you need today by making some simple lifestyle changes. Your brain and body will thank you.