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Reducing Stress and Anxiety With Mindfulness

Wellness

Suzanne Taylor-King BS, CHLC, CHN, CaPP, AADP

Stress is something that everyone has and comes up in everyone’s daily life.
Some days are, of course, worse than others. In most cases, we can handle our daily stress but when the stress keeps piling on it can be difficult to manage.  Mindfulness is one way you can manage your stress, recognize the triggers, and work through that stress to remove it from your life and move on with your day. If you aren’t sure how mindfulness will reduce your stress, or even help with it at all, here are a few things to consider.

Work Through What Matters

Stress can come from a variety of areas in your life and unfortunately, some of those stresses don’t matter. That is to say that they may matter in the moment, but they are not priorities. One way to reduce your stress with mindfulness is to focus on the items that are important and need your focus versus the things that do not. An example of this would be having your mind cluttered with what someone said about you or gossip that is affecting your day. These are things that can and need to be reduced from your life because they are causing unnecessary stress. Once these are removed you can focus on the things that do matter like the appointments you have later in the week.

Take Time to Breathe

This may sound like a very basic concept, but taking time to breathe can help you reduce the stress in your life. The trick to this is to actually learn breathing techniques that can help you reduce your heart rate and keep your body and emotions in check. Once you learn a few breathing techniques, you can apply them at the appropriate times and help refocus yourself, reduce the stress, and deal with any fallout from that stress effectively.

Change Your Reaction

Often stress is caused by our immediate reaction to the stress or the thing
causing stress. We take in the immediate reaction and let it explode in our minds. This causes a massive amount of panic over something that likely doesn’t need that sort of reaction. An example of this would be reacting to a new item in your to-do list that is unexpected. You may panic wondering how you will complete the task with the other tasks you have. Instead, you can use mindfulness to refocus and realize that the task can be worked in with another task or handled quickly and moved to your completed list.  Anxiety is something an increasing number of people suffer from. This is primarily due to the fact that we as a society live and operate such hectic and busy lives. We have work, some have school, children, and a full calendar of things we have to do. This is just the daily stress. This doesn’t into the issues with family, personal life, financial issues, and so much more. Without managing stress these daily “life” issues can leave us
feeling anxious or nervous…..the next three techniques have helped me
and many of my clients deal with anxiety at the cellular level.

Breathing Techniques

When you become anxious about something, and your anxiety issues
start to kick in, the first thing that happens is your heart rate increases.
You become panicked, on some stages more panicked than others. When
this happens it can be harder to focus and harder to calm down. Breathing
techniques work in several ways. They help you stop and refocus. They
also help you slow your breath and take calming breaths that help your
heart rate lower to a reasonable level, and ultimately help your blood
pressure to lower. This helps you calm down and figure out what steps to
take next.

Budha meditating
Mindfulness is a Practice
Focus on the Issue at Hand

Mindfulness techniques like meditation and mind mapping can help you
focus on the issue at hand. What mindfulness does is help you use and
find techniques that can take a jumble of thoughts and work them into one
connected thought with a clear path to a goal that has a starting point
and ending point. Mindfulness can help you find joy in the task at hand,
even if it is simply completing the task and moving to the next one.
Through meditation, mind mapping, breathing, and gratitude you can focus on the issue at hand. More on mind mapping in another post!!

Find a Healthier Focus

Mindfulness has an added bonus of helping you remove the negative
issues and resources in your life and focusing on healthier replacements.
Instead of freaking out you can calm down with breathing. Instead of being
upset about the day and feeling helpless, you can replace those thoughts
with gratitude for at least one thing a day. You can find that you are
happier first and healthier later and overall change your entire life outlook.
Though mindfulness will help you with anxiety issues, it can take some
time. Using tools like aromatherapy, certain foods and better sleep habits
can improve those nervous symptoms…….. If you are having severe
anxiety symptoms, you may also want to consult a physician for further
assistance as well. Need help finding a Dr. or therapist I am happy to help
guide you and work alongside them with some holistic and natural
helpers!

Suzanne Taylor-King

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