Anxiety disorders are among the most common worldwide, but sadly, only a small percentage of affected people seek help. That is, even though it is a mental health problem that is fairly easy to treat and manage.
While mild anxiety is natural and may motivate you in response to danger, if worry, fear, and apprehension persist and make it hard to enjoy life, then anxiety should be considered a severe problem.
Ways to Reduce Anxiety at Home
Anxiety can affect anyone, though in varying degrees and at different times. However, you can use several effective strategies to calm down, and that too from the comfort of your home.
Anxiety is usually associated with a worrying future event, so once this thought flares up, try to focus on the problem and be mindful of the present moment.
You can regain control by closing your eyes and taking deep breaths. Then, inhale slowly and follow it with a deep exhalation from the nose. Repeat for five minutes.
Breathing exercises are a powerful technique for relaxation and can help calm the body of anxiety and bring your attention to the present.
2. Distract yourself
D diverting your focus to something else can ease worry, stress, and anxiety. Look for some chores to do at home or an enjoyable DIY activity like:
● A project around the house
● Engage in a creative activity like painting, drawing, or writing
● Listen to music
● Read a book or watch a comedy show
3. Mindfulness Meditation
You could try mindfulness meditation if you are anxious, alone, and have no one to talk to. This practice has proven effective in not only reducing anxiety but other psychological conditions like depression as well.
The process of mindfulness meditation allows the individual to become aware and open up to accepting thoughts, sensations, and feelings by regulating the attention to the present moment.
There is nothing to be ashamed of in taking medicine for treating anxiety, as they have proven effective in treating the symptoms independently.
Beta-blockers, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, and benzodiazepines are medicines at home. Still, to make them more effective, they should be used with some kind of therapy for best results.
5. Take an ice plunge
Plunging your head in a bucket full of ice cubes and cold water for thirty seconds may seem a rather extreme step to snap back to reality, but this unpleasant experience works.
This technique instantly triggers your diving reflex into thinking you are swimming underwater in a pool, slows the heart rate, and calms the body down. You can achieve similar results by taking a cold shower or swimming.
6. Get regular exercise
Living with anxiety drains the body’s energy and gives little time to go to the gym. Though this is all but natural, exercise has been shown to do a world of good in reducing anxiety, and the best part is you don’t have to carry tons of weight to begin seeing the effect.
Only a simple 20-minute walk around the house will show changes over time. You will find this bilateral stimulation good for the brain and allows your mind to go “offline” for a while. Start slowly, then gradually increase your exercise’s amount and intensity. Develop a routine that keeps you physically active most days of the week.
7. Try Online Therapy
There are several virtual therapy platforms available that offer people online therapy for anxiety specifically. This service can be accessed in a comfortable way from the privacy of the home and is often more affordable than traditional in-person therapy.
Finding the best online platforms from the many emerging in the market these days may take some time; however, the right online app for anxiety should be the one that suits your individual needs, lifestyle and more importantly, the budget.
While not suitable for everyone, online counseling is quickly becoming one of the leading ways people seek help for mental health issues like depression.
8. Relax your muscles
When you start to feel anxious or depressed, you will notice a strain or tension in the muscles. The resultant stress can make your depression more challenging to manage. Hence, the way out is to relieve the stress by reducing your anxiety levels.
If you want to remove the muscle tension in moments of anxiety quickly, follow these steps:
● Choose a quiet and comfortable spot in your home, close your eyes while focusing on your breathing. Breathe through your nose and slowly exhale from your mouth
● Make a fist, squeeze it tightly, and hold it for a few seconds, noticing the tension in your hands
● Open your first slowly and feel the tension leaving your hands. Eventually, you will feel light and relaxed.
A simple way to reduce anxiety is by counting. When you experience anxiousness, sit in a quiet and comfortable corner of the house with your eyes shut and count to ten slowly. Repeat or count to 20 or even higher until you feel anxiety subsiding.
You may get immediate relief sometimes, but it may take longer during specific periods. The trick is to stay calm and patient. Counting gives you something to focus on besides your anxiety, relaxing the mind.
10. Art and music Therapy
Drawing, painting, clay modeling, or sculpture are all parts of art therapy that express your inner thoughts and emotions, which otherwise you find difficult to talk about or open up. Art creation and interpretation have therapeutic properties that can significantly reduce anxiety.
On the other hand, playing or listening to music, even when undergoing a medical procedure, has also proven to have soothing effects.