Stress is a natural response of the human body towards the things that we cannot handle or change. As stated by the American Psychological Association, aka APA, more than 70% of adults in the United States reported experiencing mild to moderate stress from time to time. Half of them also said that their anxiety, as well as stress, has increased in the past year.
Anxiety and stress go hand in hand. Anxiety is mostly a reaction to stressful situations. It is true that short-term stress and anxiety can have some positive effects. However, long term stress brings along many side effects. It does not just damage you mentally; it affects your physical health as well.
Common Symptoms of Stress & Anxiety:
Stress and anxiety accompany many physical as well as psychological symptoms. Some of the common ones are:
- Low mood (sometimes weeping spells as well)
- Loss of appetite
- Insomnia or hypersomnia
- Body aches (headache, stomach pain, etc.)
- Muscle spasms
- Angry outbursts
- Nervousness or panicking
- Difficulty focusing or paying attention
Apart from all these symptoms, chronic stress can also lead to some significant health issues like high blood pressure, diabetes, stroke, or even death.
So, if you feel stressed or anxious a good part of the time, here we have covered some surprising ways to relieve stress and anxiety right away.
Consider Herbs & Natural Plants
Herbs and plants bring along a number of benefits for you. They can cure several diseases, and they are certainly safer than the allopathic drugs we use as they have minimal side effects. Some of the herbs that can be used to relieve stress include:
Kava root is an herb that is made using Piper methysticum’s roots. It is generally found near the Pacific Ocean. It comes with many soothing properties that make it great for relieving stress. It is a psychoactive compound; therefore, it can enhance your mood and improve your focus.
Another amazing herb belonging to the mint family, it works incredibly well with reducing levels of stress and anxiety.
Ashwagandha is a medicinal herb that comes with a number of advantages. It can help fight stress and reduce stress-induced anxiety. It can be used in the form of supplements. And needless to mention, people swear by its results.
Cannabis has 120 compounds known as cannabinoids, and CBD is one of them. CBD does not have any euphoric effects; yet, it is excellent for managing stress and anxiety. You can learn more about them
Cut Down On Caffeine:
Caffeine is a CNS stimulant. It is commonly found in coffee, chocolate, tea, energy drinks, and even soda drinks. According to science, caffeine, when consumed in high doses, can increase your levels of stress and anxiety.
Even though everyone out there has a different threshold for caffeine intake, it can still contribute to your anxiety. In case you get to observe anxiety right after having a cup of coffee or tea, you should consider reducing your caffeine intake.
Getting back to the basics! Exercise is a proven way to combat stress and anxiety. Exercise, when done on a regular basis, can increase your level of endorphins. Endorphins are the chemicals that are responsible for your happy mood and calm behavior.
They say, ‘physical stress can help reduce psychological stress,’ it may seem a contradictory statement, but it is somehow true. People who regularly do exercise are less prone to stress as well as anxiety. Why? Because exercise lowers down the production of cortisol in the body! Cortisol is a stress hormone. Other than that, exercise can also improve your quality of sleep; thus, reduce insomnia.
Read the below articles to know more benefits of exercise:
Laugh As Much As You Can
It is not possible to feel anxious at the same time when you’re busy laughing and enjoying something. Laughing actually comes with a number of benefits including:
- It comforts your body and relieves tension from the muscles.
- It alters your stress response by enhancing your mood.
- It can strengthen your immune system.
According to research, cancer patients reported immediate stress relief while laughing with pals in various laughter intervention groups.
The best thing you can do is watch a comedy movie or read a comic book, enjoy it and laugh as much as you can.
Learn to Say NO
As a matter of fact, you cannot control every stressful situation, but there are certain situations that you can easily manage. So, learn to say no and take control of all those situations that you can handle on your own.
Remember not to overburden yourself. Do not take more than you can handle. My mother often tells me, ‘not to put all the eggs in one basket.’ Thus, never be too hard on yourself or else, you’ll end up feeling overwhelmed.
Be selective in your battles and say ‘no’ to things that contribute to your anxiety.
Listen to Your Favorite Music
Last but not least, listening to music is another effective way to combat stress. According to various studies, music can have a soothing effect on your mind as well as body. Subtle instrumental music can lower down your blood pressure and leave a calming effect on your brain.
Other than that, you ought to wake up early in the morning, take a hot shower, sit in the patio and listen to the morning sounds, especially chirping birds. They are more than relaxing, and they will calm your mind like anything, I promise!
All these simple tips mentioned above can really help you in keeping the stress and anxiety at bay. Follow them and feel the difference! Let us know if it helps you out!
About the Author
Jack is a psychotherapist and neurodegenerative disorders’ expert. He has been practicing in New York for 25 years now, and since then he has been fighting to make marijuana legal in the United States for it comes with numerous health benefits. You can read his blogs at https://thegreenace.ca/category/the-green-ace-blog/.