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Relieve Anxiety Naturally (My top 9 Remedies) :021

Anxiety is a Familiar Subject to me

Growing up I witnessed close family members suffer debilitating anxiety and as I came into adulthood and “real life,” I found myself experiencing symptoms as well.

Fortunately I was able to recognize symptoms before they grew into full-blown anxiety attacks. By applying this information, you too can diminish symptoms and prevent them from escalating!

Note, this is by no means medical advice. I am sharing what has worked for me and others. I only share what I have used personally for at least 6 months. I have used all the remedies listed here for several years. (There is one exception below.) Consult with your trusted Natural Health Practitioner to discuss the following options.

Relieve Anxiety Naturally

How I Relieve Anxiety Naturally

 

1)   Breathe

Yeah, I know it seems too simple. You’re alive, right!? So you must be breathing! Few of us get the quality of breath that we need to fully oxygenate our bodies and stimulate the relaxation response.

Ways to retrain this into your body:

  • Exercise regularly
  • Stretch your “side body” by doing gentle sidebands. This opens the body to be able to breathe laterally (between the side ribs) rather than solely in the upper chest; the latter triggers the stress response.
  • Take breath-work classes. Go to your local yoga studio and ask if they offer Pranayama. (prah-nah-yah-mah). Yeah, it seemed weird to me at first too; but when you feel it working, you’ll want to go back for more!
  • Learn to breathe into your belly. This initiates the relaxation response.
  • Wear clothing that has a loose or stretchy waist so your breathing can be more free and unrestricted.
  • Set a timer to remind you to take several deep, belly breaths every hour.
  • Last but not least… use the HeartMath Inner Balance Transformation System. It’s a simple biofeedback device that you use along with an App on your smartphone that is scientifically proven to reduce anxiety by 46% in 6-9 weeks. When I do just a 5 minute session before going to bed, I notice a remarkable improvement in sleep quality upon waking the next morning!

 

2)   Live in Day-tight Compartments

I wish I could say that I came up with this one, but I have to give full credit to Dale Carnegie and his timeless book, How to Stop Worrying and Start Living.

In this immensely valuable book he instructs readers to leave all the cares of yesterday in the past and all the thoughts of the morrow for the future; to live solely in a single day. Live in day-tight compartments!

As a side note, try to make a point of reading (listen to the audio for convenience) to this book quarterly.

 

3)   Moderation and Consistency

Especially for the Air-type (I teach about Body-types in my book, You-niversal Self-care: Improved Health Through Self-Understanding) learning to set healthy patterns is very, very important in order to feel balanced and even calm.

There are three areas in life, that if we can regulate them, will help to set or reset the body’s natural rhythms. These are:

  • Food  Eating healthy, whole foods on a regular basis helps to naturally regulate the body. Eating plenty of healthy fats and complex carbohydrates in the form of fruits and veggies (keeping even the natural sugars to a minimum) helps to balance blood sugars and therefor energy, mood and much more! If you suffer from sever anxiety I would eat meals on a schedule as strictly as possible until symptoms abate. Eat in silence or with soft, comforting music: no tv, no phone, just you and your food and loved ones if they’re present!
  • Exercise  This is important not only to maintain a healthy, functioning physique, it does so much for the rhythmic functions of our hormone regulation system. I’ll talk more about what kinds of exercise are best later…
  • Sleep  If you’re experiencing anxiety it’s likely that you’re already challenged in this area. Anxiety begets troubled sleep which begets poor sleep, it’s a vicious cycle! If you’ve applied all these suggestions and your sleep is still not better, consult your trusted Natural Health Practitioner for stronger natural remedies. If you have a very active mind, I find the Bach Flower’s Rescue Sleep to be very helpful. Also, I have not personally used this but have known it to be very helpful for others, Doc Parsley’s Sleep Remedy.

 

4)   Eliminate

Sometimes moderation is not enough. There are times where we need to eliminate certain things from our life in order to re-establish homeostasis. If you’re already suffering from symptoms of anxiety, you may feel dependent on the following, but they are not promoting overall health. By eliminating these things you are more likely to prevent the anxiety from getting worse.

  • Caffeine  We all know that caffeine can give us a nice little boost, but this charge can throw off our rhythms for the entire day. I find myself explaining to people often that caffeine is a diuretic which noticeably stimulates the kidneys and large intestines. Caffeine also stimulates other areas of the body, including the small, helpful little adrenal glands that sit atop the kidneys. So as caffeine stimulates the kidneys, it does the same for the adrenals. I see it like the kidneys and adrenals are sponges and the caffeine squeezes the healthy juices and even nutrients from them. Some people will be affected more than others. Clearly if you’re already experiencing anxiety it doesn’t hurt to try eliminating caffeine… dare I say it? Even from chocolate…
  • Refined Sugar  As mentioned earlier, keeping blood sugars stable help to regular many other functions of the body.
  • Alcohol  Although that night cap feels like it initially helps you to sleep, it actually prevents you from getting quality sleep! It also dehydrates the body, further throwing off any regularity already established. This does not help to promote prolonged health and healing. I have found Bach Flower Remedy Rescue Sleep to help calm my mind, instead of alcohol.

 

5)   Bach Flowers Rescue Remedy

Sometimes anxiety can be initiated by a traumatic event which then can leave you more sensitive to smaller triggers. It can also feel like anxiety is one continued trauma. For such deeply emotional conditions (and even the mild versions) I like to use this totally natural and very gentle yet effective remedy, Bach Flowers Rescue Remedy or FES 5-Flower Essence. They have been used to help victims of devastating floods, tsunamis and other disasters.

 

6)   Move Your Body – Shake it Loose

Sometimes when wrought with anxiety it does not make sense to do anything exciting or agitating to the body. But, have you ever been with a kid who is just so excited or even on a “sugar-high” that the only somewhat reasonable thing to do is to let/help them burn it off? Sometimes the inner giggles are so strong that you have to just get them out of your system. In my experience, this is how anxiety can be at the extreme stages; your body is so full of seeming electric energy, while perhaps counterintuitive, it’s better to just burn it off, shake it loose, lose your breath (so your body can re-regulate), lose your mind (that is your ruminating thoughts) and… have fun!

 

7)   Herbs and Supplements

Be sure to consult with your trusted Natural Health Practitioner on this one; I will share some supplements that have really helped me. When in an anxious state your body is likely lacking in nutrients and quickly uses up stores. I’ve found it helpful to supplement with minerals (primarily calcium and magnesium for my body); vitamin C, B-complex and zinc. I also really benefit from adaptogenic herbs. There are many; your health practitioner should be able to help you find what’s right for you! Check out My List of Favorite Natural Remedies in the side bar for details on what I like and use.

 

8)   Gentle Exercise

I already mentioned exercise above, but the type of exercise you implement when you feel anxious can have dramatic affects! Aside from an occasional “Shake it Loose” session, I have found gentle exercise the best for helping to calm the body and mind. Examples include: yoga, walking (especially in nature), Thai chi, Qigong and casual bike rides. The idea is to move your body in a gentle way, take a break from your day, allow your mind to also take a break… and even smile! Take time to center yourself.

 

9)  Observe

This one comes last not because of importance, but because it’s the one that takes the most practice. By implementing the above practices you’ll already be well on your way to better observe your body, mind and emotions. If you’ve already experienced very strong symptoms of anxiety, you know that you don’t want the symptoms to escalate again.

The key to prevention is observation.

What does it feel like when your anxiety levels are at a 3 versus an 8?

Which remedies can help you quickly relieve anxiety, and which habits is it necessary for you to keep up on in order to not suddenly be feeling anxious?

Where did you learn the patterns of being anxious? This is not to blame or be a victim, but to observe our environments to become more aware. For must of us, this was our childhood environment or even as early as being in the womb.

 

The good news is

You can un-train your body! You can manage anxiety naturally. I encourage you to find a health practitioner who not only supports your desire to heal naturally, but who is also knowledgable in ways to do this. Connecting with people who are successfully managing anxiety naturally can help too!

One day at a time. You can do it!