Anxiety is defined as a persistent feeling of worry, discomfort or fear. Unfortunately, everyone is bound to feel anxious at some point. For some, it’s during certain occasions, while for others, it can be a persistent problem. Either way, dealing with anxiety can be taxing since it impacts different areas of life.
Thus, looking into effective solutions to manage these feelings is crucial. There’s a wide range of options, from mindfulness practices to anxiety books. If you, too, experience anxious feelings and intrusive thoughts, here are five tips to help you improve your quality of life.
If you’re experiencing anxiety, practising mindfulness is one of the first things to do. It helps you ground yourself in the present. Doing this, in turn, will help you divert attention from your fleeting thoughts and help manage symptoms effectively. You can journal your thoughts, focus on your breathwork, and indulge in some downtime.
Often anxiety can escalate to full-blown anxiety or panic attacks followed by hyperventilating. Just pause and breathe to prevent this or work through your attack. Follow the 6-8 second rule. Inhale for 6 seconds and exhale for 8 seconds. You can follow this tip even if you’re not in an active episode but want to handle your anxious thoughts effectively. Doing this will slow your breathing, thus allowing you to take in more oxygen and put your brain at ease.
Meditation involves combining mindfulness and breathing into a simple exercise. It is a great way to keep anxiety at bay. Several mental health experts recommend meditating for at least 15 minutes daily for the best results.
Exercising is a great way to keep your anxiety in check. It encourages the release of endorphins and stimulates serotonin flow through the body. These hormones, in turn, help improve your mood and energy levels, preventing anxiety and subsequent attacks.
Indulging in books is a fantastic long-term anxiety management solution. Reading reduces stress and helps your body and mind relax. Bibliotherapy is becoming increasingly popular for patients with anxiety and other mental illnesses or disorders.
Reading lowers heart rate, eases muscle tension, and can even relax your body. It can reduce stress by up to 68%.
You can opt for any book, from fiction and non-fiction to self-help books. Reading creates an environment similar to a meditative state. It encourages the brain to slow down and focus solely on a single task. Thus, reading is the way to go if you’re looking for effective ways to manage anxiety.
And what better books than those which imbibe Christian values? Whether it’s for yourself, your children, your spouse or loved ones, there’s a book for everyone. Helen Thorne’s ‘Hope in an Anxious World: 6 Truths for When Things Feel Overwhelming’ is ideal if you’re experiencing anxious thoughts and new to reading.
‘Living Without Worry’ written by Timothy Lane and ‘Anxiety: Knowing God’s Peace’ by Paul Tautgs are fantastic anxiety books. Further, Edward T. Welch’s ‘Anxiety: A Student’s Guide to Anxiety’ is perfect for teenagers and young adults, guiding them through anxiety effectively through the Lord’s path.
‘Zoe’s Hiding Place: When You Are Anxious’, authored by David Powlison, is one of the most inviting anxiety books, perfect for young readers. Instead of shunning thoughts and feelings, these books teach and shape the youth into more aware and empathetic community members.
If you’re someone suffering from anxious thoughts, consider developing a reading habit. With books available online and delivered to your doorstep, you no longer have to step outside to get your hands on exclusive self-help books.