Anxiety can drain your mental energy and have physical consequences. But, before you become frightened about your anxiety, keep in mind that research has shown that a simple mindfulness practise can help you reduce worry and stress.
Paying attention to daily life and the things we usually hurry past is what mindfulness is all about. It’s about returning to your body and turning down the noise in your thoughts.
Don’t worry, you won’t have to pay for an hour of class time or contort your body into awkward poses. You almost certainly already have all you need to practise mindfulness. Use these techniques to incorporate small bursts of mindfulness into your day to reduce worry and quiet your mind.
Make a decision:
Your yoga teacher asks you to establish an intention for your practise that day for a reason. Setting an aim can help you focus and remind you why you’re doing something, whether you do it in your daily notebook or before essential events. Set an intention for anything that causes you worry, such as presenting a large presentation at work.
Before going to the gym, for example, you can make an intention to take care of your body or to treat it with kindness before eating.
Use a guided meditation or mindfulness practise to help you relax:
Finding a slice of space and launching an app can be as simple as that. Apps and online programmes are a terrific way to get a taste of a discipline without committing to a costly class or devoting a significant amount of time. There are a plethora of free guided meditations available online. A nice place to start is with this list of online meditation choices.
Color or doodle:
Allow yourself a few minutes to doodle. You’ll get your creative juices flowing while also giving your mind a rest. Is drawing a source of anxiety for you? Invest in a colouring book, whether it’s for adults or children. You’ll benefit from the fact that you’ll be able to complete a task without having to face a blank page.
Take a stroll:
Being outside can help with anxiety. Pay attention to the sounds you hear, the sensation of the wind on your skin, and the smells you encounter. Keep your phone in your pocket (or, better yet, leave it at home) and try to stay present by focusing on your senses and surroundings. Begin with a brief walk around the block to gauge your reaction.
Make other people happy:
This practise from author and former Google pioneer Chade-Meng Tan takes only 10 seconds to complete. Wish for someone to feel cheerful at odd times during the day. It’s all in your head with this exercise. You don’t need to tell the person; all you have to do is set the positive energy in motion. Try it on your way to work, at the workplace, at the gym, or in line. Bonus points if you stop and (mentally) wish someone happiness instead of being annoyed or upset with them. Meng, who has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize eight times, could be onto something.
Look it up:
Not only from the screen in front of you (though that should be done as well), but from the sky. Pause and take a few deep breathes into your belly while you stare up at the stars, whether you’re taking out the garbage or arriving home late. Allow the universe to serve as a reminder that life is bigger than your troubles or inbox.
Brew it up:
In many cultures around the world, making a cup of tea is a profoundly treasured ritual. Set yourself up for success by concentrating on each step. When you peel the leaves out, how do they smell? When you first put the tea in the water, how does it look? Feel the heat of the cup against your hand as you watch the steam rising from the cup. Sip your tea without interruption if you have the time. Do you dislike tea? This procedure is simple to conduct while preparing rich, aromatic French-pressed coffee.
Concentrate on just one item at a time:
Yes, if done correctly, your to-do list may be a form of mindfulness. Set a timer for five minutes and devote 100% of your concentration to one task. There will be no checking your phone, clicking on notifications, or perusing the internet – and there will be no multitasking. Allow that single duty to take precedence until the timer goes out.
Remove your phone from the equation:
Is it really necessary for you to bring your phone into the other room? When you go to the bathroom, what do you do? When you sit down to dine, what do you do? Put your phone away in another room. Instead of stressing over it, take a few moments to sit and breathe before you begin eating. In the restroom, take some time for yourself and your needs. When you’re done, your phone will still be there.
Make domestic chores a mental break:
Allow yourself to relax into the moment rather than fretting over your to-do list or clutter. While doing the dishes, dance or concentrate on the way the soap flows down the tiles while cleaning the shower. While you wait for the microwave to turn off, take five calm breaths. While folding the wash, daydream.
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to journaling. Putting pen to paper can help quiet the mind and settle racing thoughts, whether you use the planned 5-Minute Journal or scribble your ideas on a random scrap of paper. Try keeping a thankfulness book or simply writing down the three most positive events of the day.
At stoplights, take a breather:
You can’t time travel or make automobiles move out of your way when you’re late, no matter how much no one wants to admit it. At each stoplight, instead of rushing, turn your attention within. Sit upright and still while you wait, and take four slow, deep breaths. When your anxiety and tension feel like they’re taking up the entire car, this exercise sounds simple, but the actual advantages emerge when your anxiety and stress feel like they’re taking up the entire car.
Log out of every social networking account you have:
While social media has its benefits, it can also increase your tension and cause you to lose focus. You’ll be surprised how often you check your social media accounts without even realising it. So, please log out. Forcing you to fill in a password repeatedly will slow you down or even halt you.
Set a time restriction or an intention for when you genuinely want to check in. That way, you won’t be late for work or feel bad about wasting 20 minutes staring at a stranger’s puppy.
While you’re doing it, you might as well erase a couple of accounts. Using several social media sites was linked to anxiety among young adults, according to a recent study.
Look into it:
Actively attempting to remain mindful at all times can actually increase worry and tension. Recognize when you need to let off steam and let your thoughts travel wherever it wants. In your mindfulness practise, Netflix and chill has a place. Doing nothing has the same effect.
Even a smidgeon of mindfulness goes a long way. What matters most is that you practise mindfulness on a regular basis. According to a recent study, practising mindfulness on a regular basis can help you relax your mind and get over negative feelings. Try to check in with yourself at least five times a day and conduct a meditation or mindfulness exercise that you love.