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6 Ways To Deal With Anxiety

6 Ways To Deal With Anxiety

Anxiety is arguably one of the more challenging parts of the human experience. Whether you are coping with frequent anxiety or you’re feeling particularly anxious about a situation, it can be difficult to overcome. So perhaps it is more about dealing with or managing the anxiety. Dan Garner offers six techniques you can use;

We all experience anxiety at times. Occasional anxiety is natural and manageable. Unfortunately, the busy pace of modern life leaves seven out of ten adults experiencing stress and anxiety on a daily basis. Sadly, chronic worry and anxiety can rob you of your happiness. When anxiety starts to interfere with your ability to be happy and have a functional life it’s time to take action.

There have been times in my life that I’ve let anxiety get the best of me, but with years of study and a little trial and error I’ve found the following methods to effectively conquer anxiety.

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Use Mindfulness to Understand Your Anxiety

Pay attention to your thoughts. Learn what triggers your anxiety and identify your concerns.When we identify our fears then we can question their validity and find solutions when necessary. Often worrying is wasted energy with your mind running through various doomsday scenarios. It is rarely productive.

Understand that although the things that trigger your anxiety may come from the outside world, your anxiety itself is self-generated. Your internal dialogue and thoughts are what maintain your anxiety. Listen to and identify your internal dialogue.

Write a list of your worries and fears, then decide if they are valid. If they are, then search for solutions. If not, let them go. When you hear the ‘tapes’ of fear and worry playing over and over in your mind, observe them but do not give them power. Watch them and let them go.

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Meditation

I’ve found quiet meditation to be the most important factor in dealing with anxiety. When we stay too busy or distracted then our fears or concerns lie below the surface and fester. It is important to spend a few moments every day meditating and becoming aware of our thoughts and emotions.

If we are used to being busy or preoccupied then quiet time and mindfulness can first lead to an increase in anxiety before it gets better. Unfortunately, many people stop meditating when they start to experience increased anxiety. They keep themselves busy or preoccupied to try and escape their heightened anxiety but it won’t go away. We must face ourselves and our fears if we are to get better.When you first begin (or restart) a meditation program, give it a few days. Try and push through the initial uncomfort and see if you don’t feel more calm with a daily meditation practice.

Talk to Someone

Some of my most enlightening moments have come from discussing my fears with someone else. After weeks or months of keeping it bottled up inside, I would finally bring it up in conversation and it was like a veil was lifted as I realized that either my concern was exaggerated or more easily solved than I originally thought. Just talking to someone will help.

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ry talking to a friend or family member about your problems. In some cases it may be prudent to seek a professional counsellor. Don’t let pride stop you from getting your life back.

Get Some Exercise

I regret it every time that I stop getting enough physical exercise. When I am maintaining my exercise routine I am calmer, happier, and I feel in control of my life. Exercise basically burns away the chemicals like norepinephrine and cortisol which cause stress. Vigorous exercise will also produce endorphins which enhance our sense of well being. A brisk walk or bike ride can immediately reduce stress and anxiety but to reap the full benefits exercise it should be routine. Make it a practice to exercise at least 30 minutes each day.

Get Adequate Sleep

I know, this sounds like a Catch-22. You can’t sleep because you’re worried, but your anxiety builds because you aren’t getting enough sleep.

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You must find a way to break the cycle. Make sure that you aren’t taking in too much caffeine. Perform a physical activity until you are exhausted. I personally do not like using medications, but talk to your doctor if you can’t solve the problem yourself. Proper sleep is essential to a happy and productive life.

Practice Living in the Present

When I say practice, I mean just that. Most of us spend the majority of our time thinking about the future so it can be very hard to be fully present here and now. Start by doing it for short periods of time -practice.  Take 30 minutes and sit in the sun not thinking about anything – just enjoy the sun. It’s hard, I know, but with practice you can learn to do it.  I’m now able to take entire days off from worrying or thinking about the future. It is great to just enjoy the moment or an afternoon with no worry or anxiety at all.

For quick, short term methods of lessening anxiety check out my article from last year – 51 Great Ways to Relieve Stress.If you need more help working through fear and anxiety then I highly recommend Fear: Essential Wisdom for Getting Through the Storm by Thich Nhat Hanh. It is an in-depth look at our deepest sources of fear and how to get past it and live a meaningful life. The ebook version is very affordable.

6 Tips For Dealing With Anxiety | Zen Presence

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Siobhan Harmer

Siobhan is a passionate writer sharing about motivation and happiness tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on March 25, 2020

How to Live Longer? 21 Ways to Live a Long Life

How to Live Longer? 21 Ways to Live a Long Life

When it comes to living long, genes aren’t everything. Research has revealed a number of simple lifestyle changes you can make that could help to extend your life, and some of them may surprise you.

So, how to live longer? Here are 21 ways to help you live a long life

1. Exercise

It’s no secret that physical activity is good for you. Exercise helps you maintain a healthy body weight and lowers your blood pressure, both of which contribute to heart health and a reduced risk of heart disease–the top worldwide cause of death.

2. Drink in Moderation

I know you’re probably picturing a glass of red wine right now, but recent research suggests that indulging in one to three glasses of any type of alcohol every day may help to increase longevity.[1] Studies have found that heavy drinkers as well as abstainers seem to have a higher risk of early mortality than moderate drinkers.

3. Reduce Stress in Your Life

Stress causes your body to release a hormone called cortisol. At high levels, this hormone can increase blood pressure and cause storage of abdominal fat, both of which can lead to an increased risk of heart disease.

4. Watch Less Television

A 2008 study found that people who watch six hours of television per day will likely die an average of 4.8 years earlier than those who don’t.[2] It also found that, after the age of 25, every hour of television watched decreases life expectancy by 22 minutes.

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Television promotes inactivity and disengagement from the world, both of which can shorten your lifespan.

5. Eat Less Red Meat

Red meat consumption is linked to an increased risk of heart disease and cancer.[3] Swapping out your steaks for healthy proteins, like fish, may help to increase longevity.

If you can’t stand the idea of a steak-free life, reducing your consumption to less than two to three servings a week can still incur health benefits.

6. Don’t Smoke

This isn’t exactly a revelation. As you probably well know, smoking significantly increases your risk of cancer.

7. Socialize

Studies suggest that having social relationships promotes longevity.[4] Although scientists are unsure of the reasons behind this, they speculate that socializing leads to increased self esteem as well as peer pressure to maintain health.

8. Eat Foods Rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids decrease the risk of heart disease[5] and perhaps even Alzheimer’s disease.[6] Salmon and walnuts are two of the best sources of Omega-3s.

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9. Be Optimistic

Studies suggest that optimists are at a lower risk for heart disease and, generally, live longer than pessimists.[7] Researchers speculate that optimists have a healthier approach to life in general–exercising more, socializing, and actively seeking out medical advice. Thus, their risk of early mortality is lower.

10. Own a Pet

Having a furry-friend leads to decreased stress, increased immunity, and a lessened risk of heart disease.[8] Depending on the type of pet, they can also motivate you to be more active.

11. Drink Coffee

Studies have found a link between coffee consumption and longer life.[9] Although the reasons for this aren’t entirely clear, coffee’s high levels of antioxidants may play a role. Remember, though, drowning your cup of joe in sugar and whipped cream could counter whatever health benefits it may hold.

12. Eat Less

Japan has the longest average lifespan in the world, and the longest lived of the Japanese–the natives of the Ryukyu Islands–stop eating when they’re 80% full. Limiting your calorie intake means lower overall stress on the body.

13. Meditate

Meditation leads to stress reduction and lowered blood pressure.[10] Research suggests that it could also increase the activity of an enzyme associated with longevity.[11]

Taking as little as 15 minutes a day to find your zen can have significant health benefits, and may even extend your life.

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How to meditate? Here’re 8 Meditation Techniques for Complete Beginners

14. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Being overweight puts stress on your cardiovascular system, increasing your risk of heart disease.[12] It may also increase the risk of cancer.[13] Maintaining a healthy weight is important for heart health and living a long and healthy life.

15. Laugh Often

Laughter reduces the levels of stress hormones, like cortisol, in your body. High levels of these hormones can weaken your immune system.

16. Don’t Spend Too Much Time in the Sun

Too much time in the sun can lead to an increased risk of skin cancer. However, sun exposure is an excellent way to increase levels of vitamin D, so soaking up a few rays–perhaps for around 15 minutes a day–can be healthy. The key is moderation.

17. Cook Your Own Food

When you eat at restaurants, you surrender control over your diet. Even salads tend to have a large number of additives, from sugar to saturated fats. Eating at home will enable you to monitor your food intake and ensure a healthy diet.

Take a look at these 14 Healthy Easy Recipes for People on the Go and start to cook your own food.

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18. Eat Mushrooms

Mushrooms are a central ingredient in Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s GOMBS disease fighting diet. They boost the immune system and may even reduce the risk of cancer.[14]

19. Floss

Flossing helps to stave off gum disease, which is linked to an increased risk of cancer.[15]

20. Eat Foods Rich in Antioxidants

Antioxidants fight against the harmful effects of free-radicals, toxins which can cause cell damage and an increased risk of disease when they accumulate in the body. Berries, green tea and broccoli are three excellent sources of antioxidants.

Find out more antiosidants-rich foods here: 13 Delicious Antioxidant Foods That Are Great for Your Health

21. Have Sex

Getting down and dirty two to three times a week can have significant health benefits. Sex burns calories, decreases stress, improves sleep, and may even protect against heart disease.[16] It’s an easy and effective way to get exercise–so love long and prosper!

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Featured photo credit: Sweethearts/Patrick via flickr.com

Reference

[1] Wiley Online Library: Late‐Life Alcohol Consumption and 20‐Year Mortality
[2] BMJ Journals: Television viewing time and reduced life expectancy: a life table analysis
[3] Arch Intern Med.: Red Meat Consumption and Mortality
[4] PLOS Medicine: Social Relationships and Mortality Risk: A Meta-analytic Review
[5] JAMA: Fish and Omega-3 Fatty Acid Intake and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease in Women
[6] NCBI: Effects of Omega‐3 Fatty Acids on Cognitive Function with Aging, Dementia, and Neurological Diseases: Summary
[7] Mayo Clinic Proc: Prediction of all-cause mortality by the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory Optimism-Pessimism Scale scores: study of a college sample during a 40-year follow-up period.
[8] Med Hypotheses.: Pet ownership protects against the risks and consequences of coronary heart disease.
[9] The New England Journal of Medicine: Association of Coffee Drinking with Total and Cause-Specific Mortality
[10] American Journal of Hypertension: Blood Pressure Response to Transcendental Meditation: A Meta-analysis
[11] Science Direct: Intensive meditation training, immune cell telomerase activity, and psychological mediators
[12] JAMA: The Disease Burden Associated With Overweight and Obesity
[13] JAMA: The Disease Burden Associated With Overweight and Obesity
[14] African Journal of Biotechnology: Anti-cancer effect of polysaccharides isolated from higher basidiomycetes mushrooms
[15] Science Direct: Periodontal disease, tooth loss, and cancer risk in male health professionals: a prospective cohort study
[16] AHA Journals: Sexual Activity and Cardiovascular Disease

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