Stress can be good for us, in healthy and moderated amounts. But the number of people suffering from generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), where you constantly worry or stress about things, has increased significantly since 2007 – and it’s most common in women over 40.
For some of us, worrying is just a way of life. We worry about our future, we worry if we turned the stove off, or we worry if we’re going to be able to get home in time to watch our favorite show. Those are all pretty normal and healthy worries. But for the rest of us, the way and what we worry about can be almost crippling – to the point where we can’t even walk out our door due to the fears and negative possibilities our imaginations have concocted. The smallest things can trigger this kind of worrying and while it’s natural to want to be prepared for what is to come, this level of stress and imagination shouldn’t overtake your way of life. Fortunately, there’s six simple ways that you can curb stomp your worries – so when the worrying gets tough, you get tougher.
- PUMP IT UP
Getting active is one of the best and proven ways to squash your stress and worry. Physical activity triggers the release of feel-good endorphins that instantly boost your mood and banish those negative thoughts. Apprehensive about taking on a seemingly daunting task? Fret not, studies have shown that even a brisk walk outdoors is enough to elevate your mood – research from the University of Essex found that any physical activity in a green area such as the park boosts mood and self-esteem and even reduces anxiety.
- CONFRONT YOUR PROBLEMS
Facing challenges head-on will help do away with anxiety. Most people avoid their problems or evade a decision until the last possible moment, but letting your issues fester only does more harm than good. By facing your problems you put yourself in power position where you are in control of the situation and outcome, this will aid in lessening your stress. If confronting your problem is a problem for you, then talk it out with a partner or friend to provide you with support and confidence.
- HANG WITH FRIENDS
Spending time with friends, especially the ones who lift your mood can help brighten your day can melt away your worrisome thoughts. Being in the presence of positive and uplifting people can raise your self-esteem up and leave you with little room to focus on your anxieties or worries. Even a simple hug with a significant other or close friend can trigger the release of oxytocin, a hormone that induces feelings of optimism and increases self-confidence.
- EXPRESS YOUR GRATITUDE
Expressing positive thoughts or feelings can make you optimistic and lower your anxiety levels. Even if you feel like you are having the worst day ever, reminding yourself of things that you are thankful for and help you realize that things are not so bad. Try to write down give things you’re grateful for whenever you feel down – it’ll act as a friendly reminder and your brain will respond with feel good thoughts.
Taking control of your priorities and tasks places you in a position of power and control, a mindset that easily does away with stress and worry. Creating a task or to-do list is helpful for keeping you on track and helps you focus on what is important to you. Even when things don’t go according to plan, producing another list to problem solve the situation can be extremely helpful in setting you back on track.
- EAT WELL
Eating the right foods and regularly might sound simple, but you’d be surprised by how many people are doing it wrong. Low blood sugar levels can trigger panic attacks, and high blood sugar levels can elevate your heart rate – causing your to feel more anxious. Being malnourished or lacking specific nutrients can send your body into a downward spiral that affects the way your look, feel and even think. Cutting down on sugar, caffeine and alcohol can provide immediate changes to your mood and even make you into an entirely different person.
Need a solution that addresses the moment, try these:
Write down your worry. Now create two columns under that worry; the first one will list all the fears going through your head, the second one will list rational and likely scenarios in your head. Observe how you feel when you study both columns, most will notice that the rational column provides them with a clearer mind and eases their anxiety.
- Take a stress relief or anti-anxiety supplement. Specifically designed formulas like KalmPro provide the optimal blend of ingredients to help elevate your mood, calm your thoughts and banish any feelings of stress and anxiety.
- Blast some feel good music, it can be your favorite song or a new tune on the radio that makes you feel good. If the beat is just right, you might find yourself breaking into a dance that’ll help trigger the release of your feel-good endorphins. If it’s not a dance, then the song should make you feel positive and uplift your spirits.