Updated: Apr 13
10 Holistic Approaches to Supporting Anxiety in Daily Life
This post may contain affiliate links
Anxiety is a common condition that affects millions of people in our busy world. It’s made up of feelings like worry and fear, which tend to be associated with upcoming or potential events. Anxiety can manifest in a variety of ways, from physical symptoms such as sweating or a racing heartbeat to emotional symptoms such as irritability or restlessness. I know the picture I’m painting doesn’t look pretty, but anxiety isn’t that bad; it helps keep us prepared and aware of any potential danger.
While some anxiety is normal, chronic or severe anxiety can be debilitating and interfere with daily life. Many approaches to treating anxiety exist, including medication and therapy, but for those seeking a more natural approach, many holistic and lifestyle-based practices can help alleviate symptoms.
This article will look at 10 holistic ways to manage anxiety. From lifestyle changes to natural products, we will discuss various options for those seeking a holistic approach to anxiety management.
Deep breathing exercises can aid the relaxation of the mind and body. When you’re feeling anxious, take a moment to focus on inhaling deeply and slowly exhaling. You can also try the 4-7-8 method. It’s a simple breathing technique that involves inhaling for four counts, holding the breath for seven counts, and exhaling for eight counts. Repeat this process several times until you feel more at ease.
Meditation and Mindfulness
Mindfulness allows you to become aware of your anxiety and act before it overwhelms you. Meditation summons your attention to the present moment to observe your thoughts without judgment. With meditation comes mindfulness because you become aware of your thoughts and feelings, which can help you pinpoint your triggers and early warning signs of anxiety.
Meditation aids emotional regulation skills so things like anxiety are manageable. Not only does meditation make you self-aware, but it can also help you understand your feelings, which leads to self-acceptance and anxiety reduction. Be present in the moment without judgment, and see if it helps you cultivate a sense of calm to cope with stress.
Instead of pharmaceuticals, look into herbal remedies such as chamomile tea and valerian root. Chamomile tea is a mild sedative that aids relaxation, and valerian root helps with anxiety and sleep. Lemon balm also helps reduce anxiety and promote relaxation. If you want to try chamomile, valerian root, or lemon balm, they can be taken in many forms, like tea.
It’s important to note that while herbal remedies are generally considered safe, it’s important to consult a healthcare professional, especially if you are taking other medications.
Aromatherapy uses essential oils extracted from plants to promote health and well-being. Lavender is likely the most well-known essential oil, and it helps with stress relief and sleep. Other essential oils like rosemary, chamomile, clary sage, and valerian also help reduce anxiety and aid sleep.
In general, exercise promotes overall well-being, but it can also reduce anxiety. Endorphins, natural chemicals that reduce stress and improve mood, are released during exercise. Whether it’s walking in nature barefoot or purchasing a grounding mat, yoga, or weight lifting, try and make time for regular exercise in your daily routine. Not only does exercise help reduce anxiety, but it also reduces muscle tension while improving sleep. Also, mind-body practices like tai chi and yoga combine physical movement with deep breathing and mental focus. This can help with relaxation, and body tension, and promote calm feelings.
Nutrition is essential for overall health and can affect anxiety levels. A healthy, balanced diet can help reduce inflammation in the body, which has been linked to anxiety and depression. Incorporating whole foods into your diet, such as fruits, vegetables, herbs, sea veggies, nuts, and more, can help to support overall wellness and alleviate anxiety symptoms. Try incorporating magnesium, probiotics, and omega-3 fatty acid-rich foods like walnuts, which have been shown to improve mood and reduce anxiety.
Also, it’s never a bad idea to consult your healthcare provider or naturopathic practitioner about your lifestyle and nutrition choices to find what works best.
Like herbal remedies and essential oils, CBD products can help alleviate anxiety and promote relaxation. Look for high-quality CBD products that have been tested for purity and potency by a third party. Always research to ensure the product’s quality and the manufacturer’s credibility are satisfactory. Don’t hesitate to consult with a healthcare provider on decisions like these.
Sleep is extremely important for your well-being, but also for managing stress and anxiety. Getting enough sleep allows us to handle stressful situations while having the ability to regulate our emotions. When we get enough sleep, our bodies can better regulate physiological responses like increased heart rate or blood pressure, resulting in fewer anxiety symptoms. Quality sleep also improves cognitive functions like memory, decision-making, and problem-solving.
Naturopathic medicine is a holistic approach to healthcare that promotes overall well-being through natural remedies and therapies. Naturopathic doctors help create a personalized plan that includes dietary changes, herbal remedies, and supplements to support mental health and anxiety management. Naturopathic doctors tend to utilize practices like acupuncture to promote relaxation and reduce stress.
Avoid Refined Sugar, Flour, Artificial Additives, Caffeine, Alcohol, and Other Stimulants
Caffeine and alcohol should be avoided since they can aggravate anxiety symptoms. Stimulants like caffeine can mimic physical symptoms like sweating and increased heart rate, making anxiety harder to manage. On top of that, stimulants can interfere with sleep, and sleep deprivation impairs our ability to cope with stress. Not only that, but stimulants can cause panic attacks in some people, they can be addictive, and they can make some people irritable and anxious. Takeaway
To help support and manage anxiety in daily life, you’ll likely have to make lifestyle changes. This can include sleeping more, reducing caffeine or alcohol, and exercising more frequently. There are plenty of ways you can manage anxiety holistically, such as meditation, herbal remedies, and naturopathic medicine.
It’s important to remember that everyone’s journey to anxiety management is different, and what works for one person might not work for another. Listen to your body, pay attention to what feels good, and seek professional help if necessary.