This post is a little different for me, but something I felt like a lot of people could relate to. Anxiety is something that I deal with every day and will continue to have to battle for the rest of my life. This is the first time I am talking about it publicly, but I thought I'd share some tips and tricks that I have implemented into my life in order to control my anxiety.
Just thinking about anxiety makes my throat tighten up. If you don't have it, it is very hard to understand, but it is a terrible monster that consumes your life. In the last couple years, my anxiety has sky rocketed and I knew I needed to make a change. One thing I have learned is that anxiety and the physical state of your body go hand in hand. When I start to get anxious my chest tightens up so bad where I feel like I can't breathe and my stomach hurts so bad to the point of throwing up. Through counseling and my own trial and error I have many strategies are extremely helpful to me. I hope this helps at least one of you and if you have any tips and tricks that work for you, let me know!
- Essential Oils. My counselor recommended to me that I try essential oils. It has to be a strong scent like peppermint or eucalyptus in order to work (don't do lavender because it will put you to sleep). You can use it in many ways which is great. A few ways I like are mixing it in with your lotion, using it in the bath, and putting it on pressure points like your wrist before you go to bed. I also carry it around in my purse so whenever I need a pick-me-up it's there. This trick has done wonders for me and is now something I can't live without.
- Journaling. At the end of each day I like to write down some thoughts or challenges I overcame that day. It really helps me release things so I don't hold onto them and carry extra stress. This has helped me so much and has made me so much more mindful of my thoughts.
- Take Time for Yourself. This is something that is probably hard for most people (ME) but is really so important. Now, I am someone who really enjoys being alone so that part came easy to me. I also like to be productive and get shit done... so taking time for me was always hard. I have a hard time say no to people or plans even if I don't want to do it (which would then cause me anxiety). I have made it a priority to put myself first, say no, and do things that make me happy. I try to take 30 minutes a day to do something for myself, by myself. For example, get a facial/massage, get my nails done, watch a TV/movie, read a book, cook, ect.
- Get a Routine. Having a routine is something that keeps us grounded and more at ease. Once I set a routine for myself I have noticed my anxiety went significantly down. For me, it's hard in the mornings with work so I do mine at night. Every night about an hour before I go to bed, I like to start to unwind. I light a candle, take off my makeup and do my nightly skincare rountine, make my chai tea, journal, and watch makeup videos on YouTube (some of my faves are Jaclyn Hill, Casey Holmes, and Amy Macedo). I know to expect this every night and I never make an excuse to skip it.
- Safety Box. This one if for when you are in desperate times. Whenever I am having an anxiety attack and can't calm down, this is what I do. I made a safety box, something small where you can have at least one of these things with you at all times. Fill it with something from each of the five senses. Here is mine: For touch I have a soft piece of faux fur, for smell I have my essential oil, for taste I have an altoid, and for hearing I have the song "Fight Song." Whenever I am in a crisis I can turn to one of those five things and get grounded again.
Thank you so much for reading!