8 natural ways to reduce anxiety

Anxiety is something that I think everyone struggles with in some capacity. Some people have crippling anxiety that affects them daily, while others may only feel anxious in certain situations. I personally feel most anxious in seasons of change, crowded places, and when I am traveling but there are also random days where I just wake up with a pit in my stomach and I don't know why. The program I am getting my Holistic Nutritionist certification through shared some great natural tips for reducing anxiety and I thought it was an important thing to share with you all!
1. Try relaxation techniques such as the 4-7-8 breathing practice
- If a bout of anxiousness overtakes you, try breathing in for 4 counts, holding for 7, and exhaling for 8 counts. Repeat 3 times.

2. Exercise regularly
-Aim for a minimum of 20 minutes daily to get your heart rate up and get your body moving

3. Sort your thoughts through journaling
- I personally love writing and find that is one of the most beneficial ways to release my emotions, especially in situations when I just don't want to or can't talk to someone about what I am feeling. If you are looking for journaling inspiration try searching Bullet Journals on Pinterest. Journaling doesn't have to be "fancy" though, even writing on a piece of scratch paper can be beneficial.

4. Spend time with animals
- Just being in the presence of animals can be so calming. For my Colorado readers, if you also get travel anxiety there is a team of dogs at DIA known as the Canine Airport Therapy Squad that you can visit with, and love on before your flight. Horses are also known to be extremely therapeutic to those with anxiety and a range of other physical/emotional/mental struggles. If you are a pet owner, spending time with your dog or cat (or any other animal) when you are feeling anxious can help significantly.

5. Practice time management strategies
- I am someone who is chronically early to everything. On the rare occasion I am late to something my heart starts racing and I become anxious. If you find yourself becoming anxious over a looming deadline, or running late for an important meeting then try to improve your time management. Leave 10 minutes earlier than you normally would, don't procrastinate, use a planner, etc. In most cases you can avoid an anxiety triggering moment if you can be prepared and plan things accordingly.

6. Drink tea
- I am currently reading a book all about herbs and there was one sentence I thought was so cute, "tea is like yoga in a mug." Meaning that drinking tea can be very calming and relaxing. If caffeine is a trigger for your anxiety, be sure to get an decaffeinated option such as chamomile or peppermint.

7. Nourish your body with healthy foods
-Anxiety attacks are more common when your blood sugar is low. Be sure to fill up on dark leafy greens, whole plant based foods, B vitamins (which are known to help reduce anxiety, support energy levels, and brain function), and omega 3 fatty acids. Try to avoid overly processed, greasy, and sugary foods.

8. Laugh loudly and often
-Unfortunately it seems like there is so much hate and negativity in our world right now and personal stresses are also weighing people down and causing anxiety. Amidst all the bad, don't forget there is also a lot of good! Try to find joy and happiness in each day. Surround yourself with people and things that build you up and can make you laugh :)

Remember, you are never alone! I hope you find these tips to be helpful and that you will try them the next time you are feeling anxious. Do you have any other tips that help you manage anxiety? Let me know! Happy Friday, everyone 😚

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