WORK OUT YOUR ANXIETY
One of the most important things you can do to alleviate stress is get regular exercise. Not only does it lower your body’s stress hormones — such as cortisol — it also helps release endorphins, which are chemicals that improve your mood and act as natural painkillers. Studies have also shown that daily workouts can improve the quality of your sleep as well as your overall mental well-being. Whether it’s walking, yoga, Pilates or running, choose something you enjoy so you’ll stick with it.
USE YOUR SCENTS
Studies show that aromatherapy can decrease feelings of anxiety. Try an essential oil diffuser using a calming scent like lavender, eucalyptus or orange blossom — or light a candle and let your worries fade away.
“For someone with anxiety, it sometimes feels like their mind is like a hamster on a wheel — constantly running, but not really getting anywhere,” says Tom Corboy, author of The Mindfulness Workbook for OCD. “Meditating allows us to get off the wheel, catch our breath and get some perspective.” If you’re not sure how to get started, try a meditation app like Headspace, or go to tm.org for more information.
Not only can listening to music help to reduce stress, it may also improve immune system function, according to some studies. Just be sure to play something relaxing, like slow-paced instrumental music or nature sounds.
Put on a funny movie, watch your favorite stand-up or just have a laugh with a pal. You’ll feel calm — and happy
KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON
“Stress is something that’s created in the mind. It’s how we look at things. So our greatest defense against stress is the ability to change our thinking.” — Goldie Hawn