Anxiety can often be overlooked or mistaken for another condition, and therefore undiagnosed, misunderstood, and psychologically swept under the carpet, while the Anxiety itself creates havoc in the nervous system of the body.  Catching the signs of anxiety early can mean the prevention of far more grave conditions.

Anxiety is a feeling that manifests in various ways, it can begin with your heart beating faster, usually in response to a stressful situation.  Another symptom, even more, common is your palms become sweaty as you’re confronted with a perceived overwhelming task or event.  Note the word ‘perceived’!  Everything in life comes back to perception.  How you respond to any given situation is directly related to your personal, private interpretation of that situation, ‘perception’.

When you are suffering from anxiety, trauma, perceived fear, worry, etc, your body is going into a ‘Sympathetic Nervous System response‘, (SNSR). Left unchecked or taken for granted as being a/your human experience, can lead to more serious health conditions like high blood pressure, heart attacks, and even or especially cancer just to name a few!

Anxiety is our body’s natural response to stress!  Yes, but continual anxiety is damaging and sadly a more frequent phenomenon to our times today.

If you haven’t recognized your triggers yet, here are a few common scenarios where your anxiety blooms:

  • moving house,
  • your first day at a new job,
  • meeting your partner’s family for the first time.
  • giving a presentation in front of a lot of people.
  • phoning someone to deal with an issue!
  • cleaning out the wardrobe!
  • feeling bullied by someone.
  • waiting for a diagnosis - seeing your doctor.

Everyone has different triggers, and identifying them is one of the most important steps to coping and managing anxiety attacks.

Identifying your triggers can take some time and self-reflection. In the meantime, there are things you can do to try to help calm or quiet your anxiety from taking over.

If your anxiety is sporadic and getting in the way of your focus or tasks, there are some quick natural remedies that could help you take control of the situation.

If your anxiety is focused around a situation, such as being worried about an upcoming event, you may notice the symptoms are short-lived and usually subside after the anticipated event takes place.

Think about what you are thinking about!

Negative thoughts can take root in your mind and distort the severity of the situation. One way is to challenge your fears, ask if they’re true, and see where you can take back control.  In other words, think about what you are thinking about!  Will this issue really matter in 1 year’s time.  Thinking is something people just don’t take enough time to do.  Asking yourself questions around, ‘what’s good about this current situation’, forces you to go into a different state, search the other side of your brain for the positive side to your experience!  I’ll share an example; when we were hit with a significant hail storm 3 years ago, it wiped out all our garden, devasted every radar plant, every fruit-bearing tree, every flowering shrub, and delicate garden cluster that I had painstakingly set up in the lead up to the storms.  As I picked up branches, leaves, soggy plants, rotten fruit, and severed plants for the mounting garden waste pile, I went to the other side of my brain and imagined how much cleaner, and fresher I would make the garden after this devastation.  Yes, I was upset, but rather than going into drama, I went into action.  There was nothing I could do to bring back my plants right then, so I went into clean up, sort out, and re-landscaped the area which is now thriving and bringing me joy.  The ‘action’ was the key, as instead of looking at it like it was ‘too hard’, I chose to work through it gradually and methodically and felt better for the effort!

Practice focused, deep breathing

Practice focused, deep breathing.  When I say practice, you can do this anywhere anytime, even when and especially when you are not feeling stressed.  It places you in a calmer state anyway, and that is a win for your nervous system every other waking minute or hour of your day.

breathing in for 4 counts and breathing out for 4 counts for 5 minutes total. By evening out your breath, you’ll slow your heart rate which should help calm you down.

The 4-7-8 technique is also known to help anxiety.

Use aromatherapy

Scents like lavender, chamomile, and sandalwood can be very soothing.  Blends like ‘Balance’ - Grounding blend, Lavender Peace, and Frankincense are my ‘go-to blends for calming and influences my brain activity!

Aromatherapy is thought to help activate certain receptors in your brain, potentially easing anxiety.

Go for a walk or do 15 minutes of yoga

Sometimes, the best way to stop anxious thoughts is to walk away from the situation. Taking some time to focus on your body and not your mind may help relieve your anxiety.

Write down your thoughts

Writing down what’s making you anxious gets it out of your head and can make it less daunting.  Journaling is one of the most empowering things you can do to empty out the stuff that is causing you to be anxious.

I hope these hints have helped you along.  I’d love to know if you are suffering from anxiety, and I’d love to know if you have found a better way to deal with it.

Annie Clark.