How to Beat Your Stress and Anxiety

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How to Beat Your Stress and Anxiety

A rose candle burning

A rose candle burning

A rose candle burning

A rose candle burning

Claudia Tegtman, Staff Writer

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Stress and anxiety is such a common issue that 70% of adults deal with daily, and lately, has become much more of an issue with kids and teens. If people knew how little they had to do in their day to day life to reduce this negative energy before it became unbearable, they would lift much weight off their shoulders. Using the tips down below can guarantee muscle pain relief and overall happiness. Some tips that anyone could use would include and would not be limited to exercise, diet change, and even simple stretching.

Although it may be intimidating, exercise proves to be extremely useful for the body and mind. Little movement lowers the amount of cortisol in the body, which becomes unhealthy when too high for long periods of time. Cortisol is a stress hormone released by the adrenal glands on the top of each kidney. Alongside cortisol, endorphins are released by the pituitary gland and work in a similar way that morphine does. They also act as a temporary painkiller and stress relief method when practiced everyday. After a long day of work and an intense workout, sleep will more easily follow as the body is worn out and ready to rejuvenate. This is even useful for people with insomnia! Once you’re well rested, you can start the day feeling great. Even after all of that, the positive effects of exercise plays another huge role in fighting back anxiety and stress. After a couple of months (time may vary depending on body shape, type of exercise, and diet) you will see changes in your body that will help you become more confident in yourself, and drastically reduce the chance that harmful thoughts will plague your mind. Consequently people will still be hesitant to get started even with all of that said, and the many other health benefits that weren’t, but once you get a routine started the momentum of it all will carry you to your goal. That, and a little bit of hard work.

There are plenty of good workouts for your body that you can consider if you don’t know where to start. Swimming, for example, works the muscles but takes off the strain from your joints—but not everyone has a pool to their disposal. If swimming isn’t your thing and you want to burn a lot of calories fast, consider doing workouts that focus on large muscle groups, like the thighs. Squats and mountain climbers are very effective in that sense. Cardio workouts are very fast and are mainly targeted to get your heart rate up. Yoga is just as effective for those who want to challenge their body without becoming a tired mess. Say you give up easily and have no motivation; in that case, you could always use a video with a routine planned out for you, which would give you a timer and give you a better sense of how long to do them. Working out with another person is always nice so that the two can motivate and help each other. One exercise YouTube channel that you could start with is called “Shelly Dose Fitness”. Here is the link if you are interested: https://www.youtube.com/user/SheSweats

Aromatherapy is a method of reducing stress that leans more on scents, oils, massages, and more. Like exercise, it improves your sleep quality while still relieving you of negative emotion. Candle scents that are effective would include and not be limited to lavender, rose, and orange.

Diet is undoubtedly easy to forget about when it comes to mental health because of how common bad eating habits have become. By simply cutting out junk food in most people’s diets, they begin to make other good choices on their own. If you find that you are jittery and anxious on a daily basis, do a mental check to see how much caffeine you ingest. 400 milligrams per day is the healthy average amount to ingest for an adult, so if you are younger take into consideration that the healthy amount for you could be less. Please also mind that everyone is different and the amount of caffeine they can ingest without negative impact will vary. If you do decide to cut back on the amount of coffee you drink in the morning, try not to stop drinking it abruptly or else you could experience withdrawal symptoms such as headaches. Slowly cut back on the amount you eat or drink everyday until you are at a healthy amount or have cut it out completely. Now that you know what to drink less of, you should remember that water makes up about 60% of your body and is vital to your happiness. Chewing gum is also useful in reducing stress and anxiety as it is shown that when someone chews gum, it creates brain waves similar to that of someone who is relaxed, and promotes blood flow to the brain.

While it is important to remember that good eating and drinking habits are useful in good vibes, relaxing the body can be a much more short term and immediate method. Slow breathing and reducing your heart rate can be a fast way to avoid panic/anxiety attacks by simply calming down. When you are stressed out feel free to vent to friends or family because it’s a much healthier alternative to bottling it up, so try not to isolate yourself from friends or family either. Those negative thoughts can be very enticing but for the sake of your mental well being it would be best to try and control that bad habit and replacing nasty self hatred thoughts with positive, and hopeful ideas. Ideas such as “I can’t do it” and “This workload is going to kill me” could be changed into lighter phrases such as “It’s fine, I know what to do now” or “Only one more sheet to go!” This won’t be easy to do and will require patience and practice. Procrastination is huge when it comes to stress, especially in teens, and as enticing as your bed or phone may be, it will be worth it to get that essay or worksheet out of the way. This will result in work that is not rushed, and you can also take your time and ease off the panic of getting it done before you pass out.

Last but not least, two more methods on this list would include petting an animal and thinking about what kind of music you listen to on a daily basis. If you listen to sadder, more depressing music, it will be more likely that you will start to feel that way even when you turn the music off. By introducing some happier, bouncy music into your playlist, you’ll experience a spring in your step that wasn’t there before. Also, petting an animal releases a chemical in your brain called oxytocin which creates a euphoric and jolly sensation.

Hopefully one of these suggestions resonated with you so that your daily life becomes at least a little bit brighter. If you can’t do most of the suggestions try out another as it still has the same end result of eradicating stress and anxiety. If you are still struggling even after all of this advice, talk to a parent or guardian about the option of talking to a professional or a therapist.