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How to Reduce Anxiety Naturally

How to Reduce Anxiety Naturally

Have you ever been harsh or critical with yourself? 

Learn how to reduce anxiety naturally and instantly.

Anxiety is something most of us will struggle with at one point or another in our lives.  The sudden sensation of racing heart,  fast shallow breaths, the mind starting to race, body tensing and the wave of emotions that takes over.

A little while ago, this is exactly the feeling I was struggling with.

The wave, of anxiety, would just hit. I would feel the surge within my body, breathing, and mind.  Honestly, when anxiety takes over it is difficult to get back control.

You feel like you are in a constant state of fight or flight. The mind pulls you in with thoughts that amplified the anxiety. You feel completely overwhelmed

in your body and mind. It is like being pulled in and not being able to disconnect from what going on within you.

There are many ways to manage the feeling of anxiety. Did you know that you have a remedy that is safe, inexpensive, and effective?

“Your breath”. The breath has amazing powers to calm anxiety naturally.

Your breath is one of the best calming remedies for stress and anxiety and best of all it’s free!!!

When someone is experiencing anxiety the breathing pattern changes. The breath starts to become shallow the person generally takes small breaths and uses the upper chest rather than their diaphragm to move the breath in and out of their lungs. This style of breathing causes feelings of increased anxiety.

By controlling the breath or Pranayama practice as it referred to by yogis.

Yogis have now for centers the amazing powers of the breath.  Now medical science is discovering the benefits and effectiveness that controlled breathing has on mental and physical health.

This includes

  • Reduces feelings of anxiety
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Improved heart rate
  • Reduced levels of stress hormones
  • Balances the  levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide
  • Improved immune system functioning
  • Increased physical energy
  • Increased feelings of calm and wellbeing.

When you’re in a state of relaxation your breath through the nose slowly gently and evenly. When anxiety takes over the breathing pattern changes rapidly it is generally the opposite of relaxed breathing.

To give you a guide I have put together four breathing practices. These practices are effective for calming yourself gain back a sense of control.

The Balancing Breath for Anxiety

Balanced breathing is nature’s gift to help work with anxiety, by deliberately focusing on inhalation and exhalation.

Steps:

1  Begin to focus on your breathing, connect with the inhale and exhale as it is naturally, not changing anything just notice for a moment.
2  Now focus on slowing your breath and deepening it slightly.
3 Inhale for 5 counts.  Hold for the count of 2 Exhale for 5 counts. (this is one cycle)
4  Continue for 10 cycles

Benefits of Balancing Breathe

The benefits of balancing breath include:

-Regulation of your stress response.
-Regulate your emotions
-Clears the mind to improve your thinking and processing abilities.

Alternate Nostril Breathing.

This breathing practice is great for relaxing the body and the mind. It creates a feeling of balance and grounding. It also helps to reduce anxiety and promotes overall mental and physical wellbeing.

Steps:

  1. Sit in a comfortable position, sit up straight with your spine in alignment.
  2. Using your right hand bring your thumb to rest your right nostril.
  3. Place ring finger on the left nostril.
  4. Begin by breathing in through both nostrils. And then breath out through both nostrils.
  5. Close the right nostril with the thumb and inhale through the left nostril
  6. Close the left nostril ring finger and breathe out through the right nostril.
  7. Inhale through the right nostril.
  8. Close the right nostril and breathe out through the left nostril.

This is one cycle. Continue to repeat alternating nostril breathing until you feel balanced and clean.

Benefits:

Balances the brain. This is a great practice to do throughout the day to help rebalance the right and left hemispheres of the brain. It clears the mind and that foggy feeling !!! and helps with balancing emotions.

One Minute- Mindful Relaxation  Breathing

Let’s face it feeling of anxiety is mentally exhausting. By using mindfulness to focus your attention on the present moment helps calm the mind and reduce anxiety. This breathing practice brings a sense of calming when the sudden wave of anxiety or stress takes hold.

Steps:

1:Tune into the breath: just notice the breath without changing anything for a moment.
2: Focused on the breath and start to change the rhyme of the breath. Inhale slowly and say to yourself “breath in” – fill your lungs with the breath. Then exhale completely: say to yourself: ” breath out ” -as you fully empty your lungs.
Continue for one minute.
3: Complete the exercise by placing your hand on your heart and saying thank you to yourself. Thank you for taking the time to breathe and be calm.

Benefits of mindfulness practice:

  • By focusing on the here and now you are less likely to get caught up in worrying thoughts
  • Being mindful helps to take pleasure in life as it occurs
  • Mindfulness improves mental health
  • Improves physical health
  • Mindfulness can help improve sleep
  • Mindfulness has been shown to reduce stress, anxiety and other mental health issues.

Diaphragmatic Breathing

When you experience anxiety your breathing becomes shallow and contracted to the upper chest area. By using diaphragmatic breathing, it allows you to fully in inhalation and exhalation.  This type of breathing helps to breathe deeply with focus and bring about a sense of relaxation

Steps

1.  Sit comfortably with your spine in alignment.
2.  Place your left hand on your upper chest and the right hand below your rib cage on your belly. Relax and breathe normal noticing the breath for a moment.
3. Then focus on the  Inhale through the nose taking a long slow breath in.  Feel the hand on your belly move up with the in-breath. As you exhale notice the hand move back down towards your spine.
4. Focus on controlling the breath. The hand on your belly should move up and down with each breath while the hand on your chest should remain as still as possible. Experiment until you get the breath right.
5. Now you have a feel for belly breathing include the following count: Inhale for 5 counts and exhale for 5 counts. (1 full round = 10 counts)
6 . Repeat for  5 full rounds.

The benefits of belly breathing included:

– Regulation of your stress response so you’re less reactive.
– Regulation of your emotion Improves thinking and processing abilities.
– Effective in helping with mental health conditions such as stress, anxiety, and depression.

“The Breath” is a simple tool that can be used any time to promote physically, mentally and emotional health.
In challenging, stressful and anxiety proving situations one of the best things to do is to turn to the breath.
By taking control of your breath, it helps to naturally calm anxiety.

It is also like hitting the reset button for your body and emotions. Remember the breath is one thing that is always available to you and best of all you can draw upon it anytime you need it to calm anxiety. I truly hope this helped you with some practical ways to manage your feeling of anxiety.

If you need more, support with anxiety or further exploring breathing practices learn more about how I can help you Here.

Please note these practices are intended as a guide to be used in combination with professional mental health support.

If you want more free resources to support your mental health, I have created some beautiful free  resources for you HERE

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A Guided To Self -Compassion

A Guided To Self -Compassion

Many of us struggle with self-compassion. I personally view myself as a compassionate person, but self-compassion is something I have struggled with, in my own life. I’ve had to learn the skills of how to be kind and compassionate towards myself.

Self-compassion takes practise, patience and perseverance, to perfect your skills.  Once you master the skill of self-compassion, you unveil a beautiful masterpiece within yourself

So how do we start creating our masterpiece within ourselves?

As I mentioned, many of us view ourselves as compassionate people. It’s easier to treat others with compassion, kindness and warmth. However, many of us can struggle to treat ourselves with the same compassion.

What is self-compassion?

Self-compassion is a mindfulness technique. It is the ability to acknowledge your own, thought, feelings and responses with understanding acceptance and kindness towards yourself

In other words, treating yourself the same way you would treat a good friend who is experiencing painful emotions. Think about how you would treat that friend. I am sure you would be warm, caring, kind and compassionate, towards them.

However, if you were in the same emotional pain. Could you extend the same compassion and love towards yourself? Are you able to acknowledge your plain and hold yourself in a kind, caring, warm, and compassionate way?

It is not always easy to show ourselves compassion. When we are in pain, we offend treat ourselves with harshness unkind word, judging and criticizing ourselves. The inner critic’s loves to show up when we make a mistake, fail at something or feel stressed and overwhelmed.

When the inner critic overwhelms us with judgement, harsh words, and negativity,   it is easy to miss the point of self-compassion. We invalidate our emotions by telling ourselves: We should not feel this way. We should not have these thoughts. Our mind telling us we should not act like this. We call ourselves unkind names. We repeated the “I am not good enough” story over and over again.

Does it sound familiar to you? We can be so harsh and critical of ourselves. Invalidating our experiences, thoughts, feeling and emotions. When we are overcome by difficult thoughts or feeling. This is the perfect time to learn how to show ourselves more self-compassion.

Many of us have little or no experience with self-compassion. Often when we told about self-companion, we find it threatening self-indigent or overwhelming.

The fact is self-compassion has so many positive effects on every aspect of our lives.

Over the last decade, research has consistently shown a positive correlation between self-compassion and well-being

That including:

  • Boost to happiness
  • Improved self-imagine
  • Self-worth
  •  Resilience
  •  Reduce stress
  •  Improved mental health

How do we start taking the steps to develop self-compassion?

The concept of self-compassion may feel unfamiliar and uncomfortable at first. If you are embarking on this self-compassion journey for the first time. Start by building self-compassion through small steps.

Do not allow yourself to be threatened and overwhelmed by the inner critic telling you it’s too hard.

Stop and reflect for a moment: “We have been criticizing ourselves for years and it has not worked. Let’s try something different. Try showing yourself approve, compassion and kindness and see what happens”

Take your time and be gentle with yourself. Here some tips to get you started with self-compassion.

Understanding the relationship with Inner critic.

Most of us are familiar with the inner critic. That voice in our mind is quick to judge and citizen us. The inner critic seems to enjoy the opportunity to highlight our mistakes, flaws, and failures.

Making us feel that we cannot measure up to the expectation, we place on ourselves. We replay the “never good enough” story on repeat in our mind. The relationship we have with our inner critic gives us the opportunity to start taking the first steps to develop self-compassion. We can learn how to release the “I’m not good enough story”, self-judgment and harsh words of the inner critic.

This is one of the most important steps towards self-compassion.

The first step is we need to become aware of the stories we tell ourselves. We can do this by, notice and name the story our inner critic is telling us. Then we can teach start ourselves how to disengage from the inner critic.

We do this by seeing the inner critics as nothing more than words and pictures, our mind it showing us. We do not need to get into a discussion with ourselves whether it’s true or false. We can show ourselves self-compassion. By letting the thoughts and pictures of the inner critic come and go in their own time. We do not need to be pushed around by the inner critic. We can show ourselves kindness and compassion in the storm of the inner critic by:

Talk to ourselves in a caring gentle and understanding way.

Try this: Notice and Name the Story

  • This week start to notice the story you tell yourself.
  • You may want to write down the words you say to yourself.
  • The next step- is to name the story eg, (There is the “I’m not good enough story).
  • By giving the story a name, it gives you more power. Realise it’s a story, it does not mean it true or false. Its only words and you can choose how much power you give those words.
  • Let go of the story if it is unkind.
  • Put your hand on your heart. Take some deep breaths. Release the words and show yourself kindness and compassion.

Only through practice and patience, we become better at showing ourselves compassion. Next time the inner critic shows up and starts judgement and using harsh words.  Take a moment pause and notice and name the story. Remember self-compassion is showing yourself the same kindness you would show a  friend or loved one in pain. You are worthy of love, you are worthy of kindness, and most of all you are worthy of self-compassion.  Start mastering the skill of self-compassion and unveil that beautiful masterpiece that is within you.

Are you ready to start taking the first steps to show yourself self-compassion?

I would love to hear how you feel about this topic and how you are bringing more self-compassion into your life. Please comment and share your experience

Do you feel inspired to start your journey of self-compassion? Please click here for more information about how I can help you with self-compassion. It is one of my favourite things to teach. If you have any questions please feel free to get in touch 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                        

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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