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Settle Your Anxious Mind

For Mental Health Awareness Month I want to share some ideas that can help you live a healthier, more fulfilling life. To narrow the focus, let's explore simple ways that you can manage the anxiety in your life.

Everyone has anxious moments from time to time. Being worried can sometimes be a good thing – it might help you do better on a task or keep you safe. However, frequent feelings of anxiety can be detrimental to your health.

Managing anxiety in the moment helps your body and mind return to a calmer and less stressed state. When something triggers you to feel stressed or anxious, use one of the following ways to calm your mind and body from racing thoughts and uncomfortable sensations.

  • Breathe deeply and slowly for a few moments to tap into your body’s natural calming response. You might try inhaling for a count of four, holding your breath for a count of seven, and exhaling for a count of eight. Repeat this a few times and notice how you feel. 

  • Use the 5-4-3-2-1 technique. Name five things you can see around you, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste.

  • Do a five-minute high-energy exercise, such as running in place or walking briskly.

  • Find a temporary distraction, like doing housework, listening to calming music, or petting your fur baby.

  • Gain control over one small thing, like organizing your desk or de-cluttering a small space in your home.

  • Spend a few minutes in nature and notice your surroundings. 

  • Talk about your feelings with a trusted friend.

  • Practice meditation.

I hope these ideas bring you some ease. If you're interested in meditating to settle or focus your mind, check out my free guided meditation on Insight Timer.

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