Disclaimer: I am not a therapist or licensed mental health professional. If you are in need of professional help, please talk to a doctor, therapist or sign up for Online Therapy. Everything I talk about in my blog is simply advice from my own personal experience. I never state that these methods will definitely work for you as everyone is different.
Are you tired of those days, weeks or months when anxiety just takes over your life? You get heart palpitations, your stomach is doing flips, and you don’t feel like doing anything. I get that.
I used to feel like that all the time, and never even had the motivation to look for ways to help relieve that feeling. So, you are one step ahead of past me already.
That’s why I’m here to answer all your questions about the best anxiety reduction techniques so you don’t have to feel this way anymore.
When you’re finished reading this post, you will know a few effective ways to calm any symptoms of anxiety. All of these techniques are easy, and completely free, and I hope you find some that are perfect for you.
1. Go outside
There is nothing better for your mental health than getting outside. Even just going out into your garden for some fresh air will calm you down in no time.
Take your time, embrace and breathe in all the air. Just a 10 minute walk around the block will do you the world of good.
I personally love walking for 30 minutes to an hour in nature as often as possible.
It has been confirmed many times that nature helps with stress, anxiety and depression. If you live near anywhere quiet and picturesque, these are the best possible places to get your daily walk when you are feeling anxious.
It is very relaxing, and peaceful and the perfect place to be.
Whilst you are out, you can even give yourself a little task. Write down any type of birds you see, or count how many squirrels you see.
It will make your walk more interesting and help to keep your mind off of your anxiety or any anxious thoughts trying to creep in.
2. Pamper yourself
When anxiety starts to take over, the motivation to do anything (even look after yourself) can run away from you. However, pampering yourself and focusing on self-care as often as possible throughout the day can help you and your mental health a lot.
When you choose to pamper yourself, it doesn’t have to take a lot of effort. I’m not saying to start doing a 15 step skincare routine.
It’s about doing something that you enjoy that will relax you and calm your anxiety in the process.
Even if you just light a really nice smelling candle, or put on a face/sheet mask for 20 minutes and close your eyes.
Just these small acts in themselves will calm your mind, make you feel good and relieve any anxiety that you may be feeling.
Pampering yourself may just have short-term effects, which is why it’s so important to do it as often as you can. The more often you practice self-care, the more better and relaxed you will feel after time.
It’s definitely a great habit to implement into your life for your mental health.
3. Binge watch a TV show you love
This anxiety relief technique is as simple as pressing a few buttons, watching your favourite TV show and focusing your mind on something else for a few hours.
Watching your favourite show or film will help you a lot because your mind will be lost in the world that you know and love, with the characters you know and love.
Although, watching a TV show that you have never seen before can definitely help your anxiety too. You will have to put your full focus into it, to keep up with the character and the plot.
As opposed to watching something you have seen a million times before.
It will allow you to escape from your anxious mind for even longer and slowly start to reduce any anxiety as you become invested in the new show and what’s around every corner.
Obviously, make sure you find a show that isn’t anxiety inducing for you. For example; if you don’t like blood, the walking dead may not be the best choice!
4. Tidy your room
Tidying your space can always help with any feelings of anxiety. It’s as if once you finish, and everything is spotless, your mind will become clean and fresh too.
This is because tidy spaces can allow our brains to relax more. People with lots of mess and clutter to deal with tend to be a lot more stressed than those who don’t.
I know, this is easier said than done. When your anxiety starts to take over, the need to do chores is completely squashed. But, there are ways to make it more fun or easier.
Put on some music, dance and sing as you tidy. Or just tidy in short amounts of time spread throughout the day.
Doing this will definitely make the task less overwhelming which you don’t want when you’re feeling anxious.
I always find that even if it takes you a day to tidy your room, the results are totally worth it. Your space will look great, and you will feel great.
It’s a win win!
5. Cuddle with your pet
If you have a pet, this anxiety relief technique is a no brainer.
It is well known that spending time with pets, playing with them and fussing them can ignite more endorphins in your brain, and reduce anxiety and stress.
I have a lovely cat called Poppy who absolutely adores fusses and being close to people. If I’m having a bad anxiety day, just having her near me can work wonders and make me feel happy and relaxed.
It is said that a cat’s purr in itself has “magic healing powers”. They can make broken bones heal quicker, make it less likely that you have a heart attack and more.
If this is the case, then I stand by that a cat’s purr can indeed start to heal your mind.
Any cuddles with any pet can make you feel so much better.
Animals really are the best. We don’t deserve them.
6. Listen to music
Listening to music is one of the easiest anxiety reduction techniques. Who doesn’t love putting on their favourite album for an hour and having a shimmy?
Personally, music is my happy place. I just need to put on my BTS playlist on Spotify, and I’m set.
Music helps to reduce stress, and increases motivation.
If you don’t feel like going out for your walk or doing any form of exercise for example, just put on some music. You will automatically feel more pumped up and ready to go.
There is a reason you always see people with big headphones on at the gym.
I always find that plugging in my headphones and focusing on the music can really help to clear my mind at any point. Focus on the lyrics, the melody, and take your mind off of the anxiety you may be feeling in the moment.
Music can definitely sweep you away to a better place.
7. Yin Yoga
I discovered Yin Yoga fairly recently and I just had to share it with you. Yin Yoga focuses on your deeper connective tissues in your body.
It is much slower and therefore gives you more time to tune in with your thoughts and how you and your body are feeling.
I’ll tell you something, the calmness you will feel after taking a Yin class is absolutely amazing. This yoga practice in particular can calm you and slow down your heart rate really easily.
It’s no wonder, you may just want to go to sleep in the middle of a pose or after your practice.
8. Read something
Reading is an amazing anxiety relief technique. Honestly, if you find the right book that you enjoy and you’re invested in, you can escape your mind and the real world for hours on end.
Especially with any feel good or self-help books that you can get your hands on.
I’m not saying you need to pick up The Lord of the Rings if you’re not a big reader. Read what you feel most comfortable with.
Even if it’s just a few short blog posts like this one. Just take some time out of your day to relax, sit down and read.
It is said that reading puts our brains into a state similar to meditation. Regular readers sleep better, have much lower stress levels, and have lower rates of mental health issues can someone who doesn’t read that often.
You can’t go wrong with giving it a try. Even if you start off small and set yourself a goal to read a chapter of a book a day.
Go for it!
9. Start journaling
Journaling is perfect and I can’t recommend it to you enough.
Simply grab a notebook and start writing. If you are stuck for things to write about, simply log into Pinterest and search “Journal prompts for anxiety”. There are so many amazing results and prompts to choose from.
Here is one that I made myself.
Starting a journal for your anxiety will allow you to dig deeper into your thoughts and really get some peace and clarity. You will be surprised what kind of things can come out on the paper when you’re in the flow.
Also being in the journaling zone is a great escape and emotional release from any anxious or negative thoughts that could be boosting your anxiety.
Getting all your emotions and thoughts out on paper, will relieve your anxiety by making it feel like a big weight has been removed from your shoulders.
I always make sure to write in my journal (even just for a few minutes) once in the morning and once at night before I go to sleep.
Get all those anxious thoughts out of your mind and onto the page.
10. Follow a guided meditation
Have you ever tried meditation? If not, now may be the perfect time.
I love guided meditations and they have helped me so much with my anxiety over time. When I first tried it, I admit, it felt weird and I couldn’t fully focus.
However, the more you do it, the easier it will get.
Meditation doesn’t have to be difficult. Lie down on your bed, find a short 5 minute meditation, close your eyes and listen.
Take in every word they say and make sure to focus on your breathing. The focus on breathing during meditations works wonders for anxiety, and will help to lower your heart rate and your flight or fight response.
It will make you feel so calm, and slow down any racing thoughts which take over easily when anxiety is in full swing.
There are so many videos on Youtube, or podcasts with guided meditations that you can try out. I highly recommend that you do.
Now that you know 10 amazing anxiety relief techniques, it’s time to try them out. Especially ones you have never tried before. Who knows? They may be your ticket out of feeling this way.
Want to learn more about anxiety and some things I wish I knew before being diagnosed at 16 years old? Don’t forget to grab your copy of my new e-book “Supercharge Your Happiness”. Filled with lessons, tips and worksheets to help guide you on your road to recovery.