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  • Sandy Jolles

Managing Anxious Thoughts

Your brain is the control center for your body, and is the centerpiece of determining how you feel, what you think, and what choices you make. The

brain is also responsible for something we are all familiar with: anxiety. Being anxious from time to time is normal because life is not without its issues.

But, constant, debilitating, and keeping you awake at night-type of anxiety needs to be addressed because it can sap your energy and flatten your

productivity.


1. Breathing

Many people are surprised to learn that breathing is connected to the brain on a profoundly intimate level. Your diaphragm is a major respiratory

muscle that communicates with your brain and can impact how you feel throughout the day.

For example, take a few deep breaths the next time you feel angry. Chances are, you will experience instant relief and approach the situation with a

much clearer mind.

Potential benefits of such breathing techniques include:

Improved alertness

Decreased fatigue

A drop in anxiety levels

Improved stress management

Calmness and relaxation

Normalized blood pressure


2. Exercise

Regular physical activity is one of the simplest and most practical ways to improve your mental health and reduce the risk of anxiety. Movement is in our DNA, and exercising triggers various positive changes that results in feelings of well-being, relaxation, and confidence.

One notable benefit of exercise against anxiety is the release of opioid hormones that bring about relaxation and euphoria. You can thank endorphins if you’ve ever had a good workout and felt perfectly at ease afterward.

Second, a theory suggests that exercise triggers the production of serotonin––a

neurotransmitter with a crucial role in brain health, mood regulation, and sense of wellbeing. The more you exercise, the less likely you are to experience a drop in serotonin levels.

The third way exercise can help you manage anxiety is by bringing a sense of

accomplishment and boosting your confidence. It’s no secret that physical activity promotes weight loss, muscle growth, functionality, better posture, and many other benefits. The beauty of exercise is that you can manage your anxious brain in various ways. You can run, ride a bike, dance, lift weights at the local gym, or do something else. As little as 15 minutes of activity daily can re-wire your brain, creating a happier, more confident, and less anxious you.


3. Supplements

Despite a large amount of misinformation and misleading marketing surrounding

supplements, some decent products can improve aspects of your health and fitness.

Ingesting l-theanine brings about feelings of relaxation and calmness without inducing drowsiness. The amino acid works well with caffeine because it offsets the potentially adverse effects like anxiety and jitteriness.


Chamomile is another product to consider. Though typically consumed as a tea, chamomile supplements can be beneficial for people seeking to manage their anxiety but don’t enjoy drinking tea.


The third supplement you can consider, especially during the winter months, is vitamin D3. Data suggests that people deficient in vitamin D are more likely to suffer from mental conditions like depression and anxiety. Unfortunately, the primary way to get vitamin D is to expose your skin to sunlight. Doing so might not be an issue during the spring and summer, but you could be at risk of a deficiency during the colder months. It never hurts to check your blood levels and consider supplementing for a couple of months at a time.


Final Words

Anxiety is a debilitating condition that affects millions of people worldwide. Most people struggle with at least some form of anxiety in their life, and learning to manage it can go a long way in improving quality of life and success.

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