How do I calm my anxiety? A few tips you can try today

Okay dosts, this one goes out to my friends who have anxiety and feel that jittery, weird sensations of anxiety. We try our best to control the overthinking, racing thoughts, but it’s difficult when I have a heightened heart rate and am waiting for a certain response that JUST WON’T COME (as an specific but not totally example πŸ˜…). So what do I do while I am waiting to keep yourself centered and calm my anxiety down? Below are a few tips like doing something creative, working out, and tulsi tea (to name a few). Check them out below!

1. Eliminate the caffeine

You heard me correctly mis amigos buenos, DROP THAT COFFEE (yes, chai included unfortunately, since chai has more caffeine than coffee but it still affects us at times no matter how good that chai is πŸ˜”). I know it can be hard because for many people (*cough*ME*cough*cough) this is your happy place. I am literally sitting at a coffee shop writing about this sipping on my perfectly brewed latte. But it’s important to not allow anything else we can possibly ingest to affect our bodies incorrectly when we’re already in a heightened state. This will make our anxious time even worse (even if we think it will help at the time). Oh and heads up! Decaf still has a liiiitle bit of caffeine in it haha (trust me when I heard this I was not a happy camper πŸ˜…).

2. Use the bathroom/drink a sparkling water

Dosts this has been a HUGE help to me when I’m feeling overly anxious. Just the act of burping or running to the restroom has helped me overcome some of my anxiety when it is unmanageable (albeit this can also be contributed to the bathroom being my secret escape since I was a child, but that’s a story for another day). But belching and releasing some much needed pressure in my body, always a huge help and maybe it will help you too! πŸ™Œ

3. Leave the physical room (that makes you feel anxious)

Wherever you were physically feeling the anxiety, whether that be in a coffee shop, waiting for an email, in your room, at your place of work, leave. Even if for a little bit. Leave the physical space and remove yourself from the situation. You may still feel anxiety but taking yourself out of the physical space will allow you some distance from the scenario that brought about the anxiety in the first place.

Pro Tip: I found that burning sage helps clear any type of energy. I do this especially after an anxious episode to help calm myself down and regulate my nervous system.

4. Get out of your mindset (go for a run, scroll tik tok, do what you need to do in order to leave your mindset)

This one is very important amigos mios, it is vital for you to get out of your own head. Not only is this paramount but extremely difficult when you’re in an anxious state. The important question to ask yourself is: what truly gets me out of my own head? What allows me to just be, not think about anything else in the world and just relaaaax? Is it a specific movie? Exercising? A concert? Scrolling Tik Tok? Whatever it is, try your best to tap into that.

Oh, and no judgement if it’s something not traditionally considered “healthy”. This is your time and your space. You do you boo 😍. (Albeit it should be something you can sustain for a good amount of time without harming yourself further).

5. Nature Walk with some great music

I found that nature can be ridiculously grounding. Ever been on a hike and felt immense calm and serenity? This will happen when we spend time outdoors and reconnect with nature. Walk barefoot in the grass, point your face towards the sun, and take a deeeeeep breathe if you can. In through your nose and out through your mouth.

This is also the perfect opportunity for a mental health walk or any activity outdoors really. Put on some headphones and your phone on do not disturb. And just start walking πŸšΆβ€β™€οΈ. (Or don’t put on music, whatever floats your boat).

It may (or it will be) very uncomfortable at first, not being able to distract yourself away from your feelings, wanting to check your phone constantly, not being able to zone out and be in the moment.

But sit through that moment and take a deep breathe. This will help tremendously in the long run and may even help you feel calmer in a few minutes.

Luscious green hills and mountains with a girl with a backpack overlooking the hills.

Photo by David Marcu on Unsplash

6. Workout: Get those endorphins running!

Dooooooostttssss this is one of my favorite things to do! Working out is currently part of my morning routine, it is so nice to start my day with a huge endorphin rush. Brownie points if you find the activity to be a lot of fun…ie zumba, swimming, etc! Go to the gym and attend that crossfit class! Go walk on the treadmill some time. Or just lift some weights. Do whatever you need to do and try your best to have fun with it. This will help change your anxious mindset and get those jitters out of your body! Also, PS raas is a completely acceptable way to work out, put on some garba music and get moving (bhangra is completely acceptable, jam out!).

7. Make a decision and stick with it

This one is hard amigos mios. Anxiety many times is caused by not making a big decision or us waiting for a big decision to be made by someone else.

If you are waiting for a decision to be made, it helps me to make smaller decisions along the way. Which coffee shop do I want to go to? Do I want to try a new grocery store today? What movie do I want to watch today? Making smaller decisions can help ease some of the anxiety of waiting for a decision to be made. (Or preparing for the worst outcome and not thinking about it. For example if I’m waiting for a company to respond with if I got the job, then I continue applying until I hear back from that other company).

However if you are making a big decision, I typically do a trial run of making that big time decision and sticking with it. This helps me see all sides of one side while not actually making the decision. And if I reaaallly can’t make a decision, I leave it to fate and flip a coin. Once I flip the coin and get the result, I can gauge how I’m feeling about the outcome which will give me more insight as to how I actually felt about one side or the other (obviously I don’t have to listen to the coin if I don’t want to haha). But these are a few of the tricks I use when I’m having a hard time making a decision!

And importantly dosts, once you make the final decision, stick to and start putting action behind it. IE if there are 17 billion side hustles you can do, and you chose to be a blogger (cough cough, me, cough cough), start blogging. Start putting some real action towards that decision and stick with it, you got this!

8. Get creative

Do something super creative friends! Sign up for a painting class, do a tik tok dance, go to a pottery class, scrapbook, write, or simply just create. Now, what do I mean by create? It means do anything in which you are actually creating something, not passively ingesting it. Let me give you a few examples:

-Paint: you’re creating a painting

-Scrapbook: you’re creating art

-Tik Tok dance: you’re creating movement/a video (yes even if you don’t post it!)

-Drumming your fingers on your car wheel pretending it’s a dhol: you’re creating or recreating sound/music

So creating means you have to actually be creating something. It really does not matter what, just that you should create! You can even use those matkis we get kulfi in, clean out that kulfi (however way you best think haha) and grab some things from a craft store and get going!

This is different from passive activities (reading, scrolling through Tik Tok, etc) because you’re not creating an output, you’re simply ingesting. And what helps calm my jitters the most at times is to create, not ingest.

So pick up that adult coloring book when you feel the jitters and color to your heart’s desire! (I’ve had this one for years and it has helped me through some pretty tough times ❀️).

Different colored paints with paintint brush on a clay plate.

Photo by Mike Petrucci on Unsplash

9. Yoga or Meditation

Okay dosts, I cannot tell you the countless hours of hot yoga I’ve been to and that helped me during my time filled with anxiety. Now it doesn’t matter if you’re good at yoga or not, just show up for a class and turn your phone off or leave it in the car. There are no requirements for yoga other than showing up and being present. And there are a variety of yogas you can attend of all levels (check out this website to see which one would be the best fit for you!). Also, it always irks me when the yoga teacher tries to re-explain some hindu/vedic texts back to me haha, does it irk you??

Now if you’re not into yoga, all good. There are so many free meditations on youtube you can do. Additionally, for some all you need is 5 minutes (and 5 minutes sounds like a pretty good deal to me for regulating your nervous system y’all 😌). One of my favorite 5 minute meditations before bed is this one ❀️.

10. Tulsi tea….FOR THE WIN

Dosts I swear by this tea haha. Tulsi tea (or you can take tulsi pills) are essentially just all natural holy basil pills/tea that help calm your nervous system down. Warning you may very well fall asleep after taking the tea. It’s an OTC supplement that helps me fall asleep/calm my body down when I’m feeling overly anxious (lets just say I always have a bag ready for me when I leave my house, knowing my anxiety). This specific tea helps my body calm down.

Look out for the teas without caffeine (I don’t believe they come with caffeine, but it’s always good to check) and I would highly recommend trying this in the comfort of your own home before relying on this. This way you understand how your body reacts to the tea and are able to determine its appropriate use. You can find some of my favorite flavor of tulsi tea here. (Also gentle reminder that this works for me. This may not work for you so I highly recommend trying this before recommending or making it a part of your daily diet).

11. SING

Yes, you read that correctly friends. It’s time for you to put on your favorite playlist and JAM out! If there is anything that helps calm down my jitters, it’s belting out to some of my favorite songs. But remember to sing it like you’re Beyonce or Arijit Singh (lord knows I have) no matter how bad you think your singing voice is. This is such a great way to actually start to have FUN with yourself and release some anxiety 😍.

12. Surround yourself with supportive families/friends/partners

Yes amigos, this is probably the most important tip of all. Communicate with your friends/loved ones how you are currently feeling. Make sure they are supportive of your heightened state and communicate anything you need of them. If you need them to make dinner one night or run some errands, that’s okay (and it’s okay to ask especially as a desi girl, we don’t have to be 100% okay 100% of the time).

It’s okay to rely on your loved ones when you’re in this state. If they are supportive of your well being, you should be able to rely on them. You should not be satisfying all your needs yourself (I literally cringed typing this because this is something I am still learning with my hyper-independence). But dosts it’s true. It’s okay to get some support from your loved ones, that’s what they are there for ❀️.

Aaaanyywaays, I hope that helped friends. I know these anxious times can be super suuuper hard, but let me know if any of these tips helped! And if you have any other tips, comment below πŸ‘‡.

To a stable nervous system πŸ₯‚,

Heens

Psssst, I’d like to point out and reiterate that I am not a mental health professional and this is not a form of therapy. These posts are based on my experiences and helped me in my journey. There are local websites available for professional mental health services.

PS: Want more content like this? Check out how I set boundaries with my desi parents here!

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