how to cure anxiety

This post has a bold title for a reason- while there is no “cure all” for general or crippling anxiety (in fact, anxiety exists to help you), I do so strongly believe in these methods working to help alleviate symptoms that I wanted to get your attention!

If you are a sufferer of anxiety then please read on. If you aren’t, that doesn’t mean that you will go through your entire life without experiencing it at some point. In fact, it can hit anyone at any given moment. For the more sensitized people (myself included), it can become almost unbearable.

Now I’m not writing this from a doctor’s standpoint. I’m writing this from someone who has lived with anxiety probably my entire life, and suffered from pretty bad anxiety over the last 1.5 years. I now feel 90% better than how I felt last year. I do still have some of my physical symptoms, for just as the body takes time to heal a broken leg it also takes time to heal from nervous energy. But I no longer have my persistent anxiety, and that is due to these natural methods. So, I am not deterring anyone from going to a doctor to seek help. I’m merely stating what helped me, and what I believe can help you too (if you are wanting it to)!

Everyone who has anxiety has their own unique story. I won’t get into mine much, but I will say that it began after much stress and change about 1.5 years ago. From there, the horrible physical symptoms arose. I went from being completely healthy and happy to incredibly dizzy, upset stomach, heart palpitations, eye floaters, lump in the throat, shaky hands, weak legs, moody, tinnitus, and more. These symptoms never let up. For 24 hours a day I experienced them, and could barely function. I suffered, my children suffered, and my husband probably suffered most. It was horrendous.

After over a year of so many tests, I kept on hearing the same thing from doctors. “Your results are normal. I don’t know what you have, but it could be ______ (insert illness/disease). I’m referring you to a specialist. By the way you also have anxiety and should go on anti-depressants.” Then they would wash their hands clean of me. I never went on them, and I became so tired of that cycle and living in constant fear that I knew that something needed to change.

Like so many people with anxiety, I spent hours researching natural and alternative ways to “cure” it. I would tell myself to get over it and do everything I could think of to mentally push it away. I tried ignoring it, which only made it worse. I didn’t realize that what I should’ve been doing was fully accepting it- even calling it on! Sound crazy? I know, but it works.

First things first. The changing moment in my life came when I downloaded the DARE app. You need to as well. No, this isn’t an ad. What it is is life-changing. Download it, go off by yourself somewhere, and listen to it all. Take it in. The type of anxiety that you have will become clear, and the amazing founder of the DARE Response will tell you how to start living peacefully with your anxiety. That day.

You will also most likely be sent the e-book. Read it. If you aren’t, here is a free link. The password is dare2016.

I was told by someone that the founder, Barry McDonagh, was largely inspired by the brilliant Dr. Claire Weekes. So step two, read everything that you can by her. Do you like Audrey Hepburn? If so then I highly recommend her audiobook “Panic Away.” It will put the DARE Response into perspective and give you a more rounded understanding of how tricky anxiety is and how you can live peacefully with it. Reading/listening to her material is as important as doing the same of McDonagh’s.

Let’s discuss food. If there are two foods that you should try to eliminate it’s caffeine and refined sugar. What does caffeine physically do to a body? It increases your heart rate, makes you excitable, can make you dizzy, give you racing thoughts, the inability to sleep, and more. It can even make you anxious. Those with anxiety already suffer from these issues. Why would you want to increase that? So please, it will be very hard, but the first thing that you must do is cut out all caffeine. You will feel like garbage for days or weeks but I promise you that it will help you in the long run! (If you happen to miss the taste then opt for decaf instead.)

Why sugar? It has also been linked to mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety. While I tried to cut it out of my diet completely, I found that it was incredibly difficult. Instead, I have cut down on it a lot. Even doing that is better than consuming a lot of it.

Now of course there are foods that can help reduce the effects of anxiety. I didn’t find that they worked for me, perhaps because I didn’t stick to a plan where I ate them regularly. However, I don’t dispute their effects. So, I will include them here. They are: Brazil nuts, fatty fish, eggs, pumpkin seeds, dark chocolate, turmeric, chamomile, yogurt, and Green tea (try herbal). Finally, water. Drink more water!

Now for what I know does help- V I T A M I N S! The day you stop drinking caffeine, please begin take a Vitamin B complex. There are so many studies on how this vitamin helps to lower stress in the body. I promise you that it works! I can always notice a difference on the days that I don’t take it as I generally feel more irritable. This is one of the most important vitamins to take in this new journey.

Magnesium (with Calcium) is also said to be the world’s most natural relaxation pill. Some of it’s benefits are it promotes a better sleep and it relaxes your nervous system. In order for it to work properly, Magnesium needs to be taken with Calcium. You can actually buy both together in one capsule!

Probiotics. Again there is just so much research on how good gut health improves your overall health and mood. I find that taking one is also very important if you are wanting to get over your general anxiety.

Acupuncture is something that has also changed my mind towards all the wonderful benefits of Eastern medicine. It also helps that the doctor who administers my acupuncture is a kind, affirming man. The key is to find one that will tell you that they can cure your anxiety, and will reassure you each time you go in. I actually went to another acupuncturist before finding him, and found the process to be painful and uncomfortable. Don’t stop searching until you feel like you found someone that can help you, and that you actually leave feeling better than before you went in! Acupuncture helps release endorphins to ease anxiety. With regular treatments, and a credible acupuncturist, it is just so beneficial.

Finally, exercise. I know that health professionals say that exercising two or three times a week is what you should always aim for. But I say that if you can do it everyday, please do! It doesn’t have to be long or strenuous. 20 minutes or so of jump rope or a YouTube workout (my family loves Chloe Ting) to get the heart rate going does wonders for reducing your anxiety levels. Or, going for a longer walk. Anything helps and it is one of the best defences against anxiety that you will find. 

To sum up:

– Download the DARE Response app and read the book
– Read/listen to everything you can by Claire Weekes
– Eliminate caffeine and sugar
– Eat anxiety-reducing foods
– Take Vitamin B, Magnesium with Calcium, and a Probiotic
– Consider acupuncture
– Try to exercise everyday
– Most of all, find someone who can tell you everyday that you will get through this! Anxiety is not a life-sentence and you can easily live with it with just a bit of work on your part. I promise that you will be ok!

This may all seem like a lot and perhaps even difficult. Aside from acupuncture, it won’t cost you more than your average grocery bills. You definitely don’t have to do them all at once, but instead, maybe adopt them over a period of weeks or months. It is work, but so is living with anxiety. Anxiety is more than a full-time job. My goal in posting this is to stop anxiety living your life for you, and for you to gain that control back!

Please consult your doctor if you are suffering from anxiety, and are wanting to explore more natural methods before considering anti-depressants. Or, if you are already on them and want to try any of these methods in addition to taking them. I talked to a professional before going trying each of these natural methods and followed their suggestions in doing so.

Lastly, you are not alone! I am always here if you need to talk. If ever you feel like reaching out, my email address is helloscarlettblog@outlook.com. Also, if you would like to let me know what has worked for you, please leave it in the comments below. You got this!

<3

Emory

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3 relaxation techniques for a stressed person

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Many people are experiencing higher levels of stress than usual right now. The coronavirus pandemic, confinement indoors and separation from family and friends are all contributing factors to excessive amounts of stress and anxiety; it’s a totally understandable, natural reaction to the world right now. 

If you are struggling with stress or anxiety at the moment, it could be affecting your ability to go about your daily life and complete all your tasks. It could even be affecting your sleeping, eating, exercising or working habits. 

Nobody should have to live with excessive stress – even if they are going through something difficult. Here are 3 relaxation techniques for a stressed person!

1. Do your regular routine, but make it mindful.

If you are a busy person, you could put yourself into robot mode when it comes to doing your regular routine, such as chores, work or childcare. You might be in the habit of doing things mindlessly, just trying to do everything as quickly as possible without putting any heart into it. This is a normal stress response, but one that only extrapolates your feelings.

As a stress-relief technique, try doing your regular tasks in a more mindful way. ‘Mindfulness’ is a buzzword that is thrown around a lot, but what it truly means is that you should pay attention to the actions you are taking. If you are cleaning your kitchen, pay attention to the way the sponge moves across the countertop. Breathe in the clean smells. Take your time; this menial task will come to mean something more, and bring calm feelings with it.

2. Figure out your triggers and let them go.

Everyone has triggers that increase their stress or make them particularly anxious. Examples of these triggers are messy work spaces, put-downs from your partner or spouse, calls from the boss, your kids making too much noise or family worries.

Whatever those triggers are for you, your job is to try to find a way to either let them go or become okay with them. If these triggers can’t be eliminated from your life, the task is then to re-learn your association with that thing. Seeing a therapist can help massively with unlearning negative associations and reestablishing your relationship to your triggers.

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3. Use self massage techniques.

Self massage is a fantastic way to calm down after a difficult day. You can find techniques online that help you work your tense muscles and find stillness in the evening. It helps if you are comfortable, so ensure you have bathrobes and dressing gowns ready to wear for this exercise. In addition, having a bath beforehand can help soothe any muscular tension you have. Massage is the perfect way to release your stress and sleep better through the night.

Final Thoughts

If you are struggling with stress during the pandemic, you can use these techniques to alleviate your worry and become more relaxed. While there’s no quick fix for stress, these three tips can help reduce these feelings.

** This was a contributed post.

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new year

As I write these words, I am just so relieved that 2020 is coming to an end. At the same time, I am wary to say that we are in the clear just yet. It seems like every time I turn around, bad luck is coming someone’s way (and we are not exempt).

Personally, this was a year filled with medical appointments and mental health issues. From physical symptoms that triggered anxiety, to anxiety that caused physical symptoms. I had so many tests done, and yet, no answers from doctors. I heard words from them that had life-changing and even potentially terminal outcomes, and then was told that I’m too anxious when I would break down over their mention of a horrible illness. They all threw an assortment of drugs my way together with more and more referrals. That is, until I stopped going.

I am coming out of this year with a deeper understanding of mental illness, and ways to treat and cope with one without relying on western doctors and medication. I’ve had so much help from professionals in alternative medicine- with their gentle and effective treatments, complete understanding of what goes on inside someone’s mind and body, and positive mindsets. I don’t think that I would have survived this year without them. Actually, I know it.

I hope to one day write a blog post about anxiety and what I, as someone who is only just learning about it, have tried and what suggestions to do to overcome it naturally. I’m sure it will be a life-long journey, and it is one that I can share in these early days.

As 2021 approaches, I am trying my hardest to leave all of this negativity behind me. 

Goodbye to the most challenging year, on a global scale, this century. You tried to break us, but you did not succeed. You will not be missed!

Emory

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