What Helps Relieve Anxiety

Anxiety and social anxiety can be difficult to deal with on a daily basis. I have been living with anxiety since I was a teenager and social anxiety since I was a young adult. One of the worst parts for me is that my anxiety often leads me to panic attacks. I have had some of the worst panic attacks in my own life over the last two years.

I am in no way an expert. I still deal with anxiety almost daily at some level. Right now I am regulating my anxiety better because of my current dosage of Ativan. With the right balance of medication, things like cognitive behavioral therapy, and meditation things can be good. With these things, it can be very helpful in relieving anxiety. I will go into detail about what works in my life and what are some things that are effective.

I prefer to work through experience first, so here I go, things that help relieve my anxiety.

What Works for me? CBT

In September 2016, I had the worst panic attack in my life. I was driving home and my whole world changed. I thought I was having a heart attack. I couldn‘t breathe. I was hyperventilating. My hands began to go very numb and I barely had time to pull over. The paramedics got called to the scene and I ended up in the hospital.

I tell this story here because it was the start of the beginning of my journey with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. It changed my life. I have been working since February of last year, and a year into it I am still learning what can be effective every day. I will admit I have work to do, but hey we are all works in progress.

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So what did I learn?

Mindfulness breathing. It is one of the most effective tools that I have learned in CBT training. It’s an exercise that I do ten minutes a day twice, once in the morning and once in the evening. It’s meditation with a focus on your thoughts. What mindfulness taught me was to focus on my where my thoughts go, and when my mind wonders I bring my focus back to my breathing. I bring myself back to my center. I learned over time to focus on my breathing only without my thoughts wondering too much.

I also learned that music can be such an amazing tool that you can use to alleviate anxiety and even stress. In CBT, I also learned to use mood induction therapy as a tool. I don’t want to go into too much detail but if you’re interested I have written a blog post about it.

What Else Can You Do?

There are some amazing tea brands out there and any one of them has a tea that can be effective in helping anxiety. I quit coffee to start 2018 and it has helped keep my anxiety under control. I am not positive if there is a connection but switching to tea has been very helpful.

Meditation is another effective thing that you can use. I am the type of person who needs the reminders to meditate. I have found app CALM very useful in helping me by reminding me to meditate. Its a great app for classes that will teach you how to meditate. I recommend it. I have never done yoga but from what I hear it can be effective as meditation.

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My doctor told me this a few months back and it has been effective when I have used it. It’s called exposure therapy. With exposure therapy, you can do things to simulate a panic attack to help you focus on the symptoms of anxiety. It can be useful. For my social anxiety. I have found immersing myself into situations that can cause me anxiety in a social situation very helpful. That means going for long drives. Or going to coffee shops that I am that I am not used to. Just being in social settings.

The point is to make you face your worst fears associated with social anxiety. This is one that I am working on in the coming weeks.

There are the simple things that can help your anxiety. Exercise and eating right is the most important thing in helping relieve anxiety. Of course, there is always medication. I have to warn you, anxiety medications can be quite addictive and hard to get off of once you are on them. I would caution anyone to try things like CBT, meditation, exercise, and therapy first.

These are the things that have been effective in my life. It’s not always perfect. I am always working on getting my anxiety completely under control.

I am interested in what helps you relieve your symptoms of anxiety. Leave some comments below.

Always Keep Fighting.

J.E. Skye

Photo Credit:

unsplash-logoAyo Ogunseinde

unsplash-logoJoshua Rawson-Harris

unsplash-logoKalen Emsley

21 Replies to “What Helps Relieve Anxiety”

  1. I suffer from emetophobia, which is the fear of throwing up or being around others who are throwing up. I’ve had it since I was 8 years old after getting sick from a hot dog, of all things. I won’t touch them to this day. I’ve heard that exposure therapy can be good but I don’t think I’m ready to be exposed to vomiting just yet, lol. I’ll just have to keep freaking out. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’m working on things at the moment and so far Yoga is pretty good, particularly with a good teacher who is very clear on the breathing aspect. Can’t do music at all, it sends me into a bit of a state which is a shame, but the best thing is being with someone whom I trust and I can explain things too. Had a mini meltdown last night when I smelt my late mother’s perfume whilst he and I were sitting together in our favourite little Italian deli, but he helped me and he understood. I didn’t feel foolish. Thanks for your tips … I love them.

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  3. Great post and thank you for some of the advice. Music is one of my main therapies or go tos when it comes to anxiety and just about anything else.

    Coffee, energy drinks or anything caffeine related is connected very much to anxiety. When people get help for their anxiety a lot of the first pieces of advice given by a professional or asked is how much coffee do you drink if at all, energry drinks etc and if so cut it down. Tea is a good alternative, one I am trying to look more into and maybe make a switch. I am glad it has helped you. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah it can be hard to give it up, but a healthier choice I am sure when it comes to things like anxiety.

        I know a few people who can’t even drink coffee etc without having an anxiety attack.

        I drink about two small cups, if that a lot of the time just one recntly in the morning and sometimes one later in the day well that is since I have cut back at least. I use to drink a lot of coffee and never realized as an anxious person naturally it can actually risen anxiety. Which now that I have been informed actually makes a lot of sense. Especially when I hardly slept, I would function on coffee but like looking back during that time I was a lot more anxious. So now I am drinking tea a lot more often and trying to cut coffee out even more. Maybe even completely.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Thanks for the suggestions. I’m hoping not to fly off the stage next time I win a writing award. At least I had something to talk about when I ran into the guest of honor the next day on the elevator. “Hi Mr. Martin. I’m the one who fled the stage at opening ceremonies.” I hate large crowds, especially if I’m in front of one.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you for this post! I’m supposed to start seeing a traditional healer soon to start working on my anxiety, so I’m hoping that helps. I’ve been keeping a journal for the last few months to clear my mind and relieve anxiety about past and future events, which seems to help me, and meditation when I was doing it, helped as well. Exposure therapy sounds too daunting for me..too overwhelming and stressful, I don’t think I could do it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can understand how daunting a task that exposure therapy can be. It’s tough and even I can struggle with it. In my opinion in an extreme form of therapy. I would highly recommend cognitive behavioral therapy thought. Ask your expert about it.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Very true. I experience more issues when I fail to take care of the obvious- rest, eating, exercise & music is a great stabilizer. I refuse to listen to any music that is not uplifting & positive. My 20 year old son complained about it the other day. I explained why I do that & he scoffed. But I told him I did not care what he thought that I was doing what felt right to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s great that you recognize the importance of such things like rest, eating right, exercise and music. It’s great that listening to uplifting music helps you. Your right. It feels right to you so it doesn’t matter what others think. Thank you for sharing.

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