Anxiety and depression are common disorders that most people encounter at some point in their life. While the two are different, they often go hand in hand, at times feeding off one another.
For some the experience is truly debilitating. Pharmaceuticals may help ease the symptoms of both, but they are not right for everyone.
According to the National Institutes of Health, those who suffer from anxiety and depression tend to have high levels of stress in their life. For many, techniques that help lower stress can also decrease the symptoms of anxiety and depression.
If you believe stress is causing symptoms of anxiety and depression to become worse, try one of the following.
Meditation is one of the simplest ways to reduce stress, and it is not as difficult as most believe. Setting aside even 10 minutes out of your day for meditation can have a huge impact on your stress levels.
- Choose a quiet place, without interruptions.
- Now close your eyes, relax all of your muscles, and focus on your breathing.
- If it helps you to relax and focus, silently recite a favorite phrase or mantra such as "I feel at peace" while performing this exercise.
One other simple way to eliminate stress is to practice deep breathing. The technique is simple enough to do anywhere. Try this when you feel stressed at work, home, or even while commuting.
- Try to sit as comfortable as possible.
- Quietly take a deep breath in through your nose while counting to three.
- Hold the breath for one count.
- Now gently exhale through your mouth.
- Repeat for several minutes until you began to feel relaxed.
Exercise is quickly becoming a cure-all for many ailments, and stress reduction is one of them. Set aside time each day for physical activity. You don't have to join the gym to reap the benefits of exercise. Try this instead:
- Dance around the house to your favorite tunes.
- Go for a walk during your lunch break, or after a stressful day at work.
- Look online for new Yoga poses to try at home.
Reducing stress in your life can help decrease the symptoms of depression and anxiety. Try incorporating one, or all of the above techniques to help improve your life. What do you do to reduce stress? Does it have an effect on your anxiety? Let us know in the comments below!