Do you ever experience a sudden palpitating heart or nervous jitters while anticipating something? Or there are some troublesome thoughts that you never seem to escape? Maybe you don’t feel as happy and confident about yourself and your future as you used to be? Anxiety is a common mental health issue today in this chaotic, complicated world.
At some point in life or other, most people bombard their minds with negative thoughts that arise due to past traumas, experiences, or misfortunes.
Anxiety, for some, occurs in specific intervals. Some others say they were anxious at one point in life but succeeded in overcoming it. If you ask them, you might hear how dealing with anxiety prepared them for the future ahead in more ways than one.
Overcoming anxiety makes individuals better versions of themselves, both in terms of their physical and emotional capabilities, as they tend to connect with others more emphatically.
So you can learn a lot about life and come to vital realizations while struggling with anxiety. But let’s be honest. Nobody deserves to struggle with such an experience that impacts the quality of life. Not only does our mental health suffer, but it also affects our physical health and relationship with others.
Worsening anxiety leads to depression, and people forget to enjoy the beauty of life as threatening darkness looms large over them. Those of you for whom anxiety has become a demon affecting your everyday life might seek professional help. But there are a few natural remedies that you can try for yourself first.
Symptoms For Anxiety And Depression
People get so caught up with hectic life activities that they often ignore any unusual feeling as a temporary product of a bad day. Half of them don’t realize those feelings occur frequently and might have some severe underlying reasons.
So how does one identify as anxious? Anxiety is a general term for a constant feeling of worry and apprehension. It includes various sub-categories of anxiety issues such as Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Social Anxiety, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Separation Anxiety (especially in children), among others. The most common symptoms of anxiety include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Rapid heart rate
- Tensed muscles
- Constant dread or panic
- Lack of confidence
- Digestive problems
Anxiety affects a combination of physical and psychological health problems. It closely relates to depression, which includes these symptoms, along with:
- Drastic changes in weight and appetite
- Chronic fatigue
- Trouble in concentrating or making decisions
- Lack of interest in life and hobbies
- Hopelessness, anger
- Self-loathing and guilt
- Loss of memory
- Self-harm thoughts
- Suicidal attempts
If you notice these signs affecting your way of life, don’t hesitate to seek professional help or try alternative forms of natural therapy. Anxiety and depression cost millions of lives each year, so value your life before it gets too late.
What Is The Holistic Approach?
A holistic approach is a natural method for treating anxiety and depression that many therapists and psychologists prefer today. Holistic views the individual as a complete whole and does not narrow down their suffering to any singular aspect. Instead, a holistic path chooses to encompass the individual’s body, mind, and spirit in resolving the problem.
Anxiety connects to our physical, biological, and social existence. So holistic method is an integrative approach to reduce our anxiety. By following a few simple steps, we can celebrate a more meaningful and productive life.
Let’s learn about it!
Meditation, Yoga, and Relaxation
Anxiety gives rise to irrational fears and chaotic thoughts over which you have no control. Meditation is one of the best ways to calm your racing mind and focus on the present. Even 5-10 minutes of mindfulness meditation every day blocks all pessimistic thoughts concerning your past or future and helps you cherish the current moment. During meditation, you learn to keep your anxious mind aside and view the world curiously without judging.
Yoga is another effective method to relieve your anxiety. The various mudras, asanas, and breathing exercises calms your nerve and lowers down the heart rate. If you are suffering from an anxiety disorder, you might often experience shallow breathing, a feeling of suffocation, and panic. Your body muscles also tend to tense when you have an anxiety or panic attack.
By taking a few deep breaths, you slowly inhale the positivity and exhale the toxic, negative thoughts from your mind. The yoga postures help relax the muscles, allowing a surge of energy to flow through your body.
Finding peace of mind is the ultimate goal for progress and happiness in life. By following these approaches, you can strive to cultivate your inner peace and get rid of worries.
As we discussed earlier, anxiety is not something that confines your mental health. It creates a stressful unhealthy environment overall that causes potential damage to your physical health. Your mind is overactivated with negative emotions that result in fluctuating heart rates, blood pressure, blood sugar, and other chronic health issues.
Exercise helps in burning off the negative energy and boosting your mood. A half-an-hour run, jog or walk every day not only makes you stay physically fit but produces a relaxing sensation in your mind that encourages you to focus on each day with more positivity.
Use of Crystals
In the ancient civilizations of Egypt, Greece, Rome, and India, crystals were popular in warding off negative spirits or evils. In recent years, many individuals suffering from anxiety refer to using crystals as a spiritual practice to improve their psychological and emotional health.
There is not much scientific evidence on the healing power of crystals. The benefits of crystals come from the individuals’ expectation of the crystals to have positive results on the body and mind. It is much like the placebo effect, where the power of a person’s mindset influences the positive effects of the treatment.
According to the ancient Sanskrit scriptures, our body has seven chakras or energy centres. Crystal balls contain positive energy that vibrates when coming in contact with our body parts, and it helps to enhance the energy flow within our system. The flow of positive energy benefits our emotional moods and stabilizes the mind.
The first step while using the power of crystals is to surrender your body, mind, and spirit to supreme power. You can keep the crystal balls in your hands or pockets and even as jewellery stone pieces. The energy transmitted from the balls will help to heal your mind from all the worries.
An unhealthy hectic way of life can trigger your anxiety. You would see so many doctors recommend a healthy diet and proper sleep whenever there is a diagnosis of a vital health issue. It is because a healthy lifestyle impacts both our body and mind in a positive way.
Avoid junk food and opt for a protein and vitamin-based nutritious diet full of fruits, dairy products, and vegetables to improve your cardiovascular health and metabolism. Your diet should consist of supplements of vitamin D, vitamin B-complex, magnesium, and chromium that activate the calming receptors of the brain and lower anxiety levels. An improper diet or eating disorder connects to increased levels of anxiety and restlessness.
If you suffer from chronic anxiety, cut out caffeinated beverages, smoking, and alcohol from your life. A cup of coffee, a cigarette, or alcohol can offer temporary relief from stress and anxiety. However, overdependence on caffeine, smoke, or alcohol can never be a good solution in the long term as they will negatively impact your mental and physical health.
A good night’s sleep of 7-9 hours reduces the stress hormone cortisol and prevents insomnia. It benefits your mental state by resting your anxious mind, preparing you for a productive day ahead.
Aromatherapy is immensely beneficial in providing a sense of calmness in an anxious mind. The fragrances of essential oils in various herbs have evidence to soothe the nerves, slow down a racing heart, improve sleep. You can use oils of chamomile, lavender, bergamot, or jasmine to inhale the aroma and relieve your anxiety.
It is a natural treatment that offers clinical nutrition, botanical supplements and treats individuals as a whole.
Naturopathic doctors prescribe medicines to regulate hormonal fluctuations. Stress due to anxiety increases cortisol levels that contribute to restlessness and insomnia. Anxiety also affects the neurotransmitter GABA and slows down serotonin production, resulting in neurological imbalances.
Naturopathic treatment recommends the use of botanical medicines such as L-theanine and Gamma amnio-butyric acid(GABA). L-theanine is the chief amino acid found in green tea that positively affects blood pressure and heart rate. Other botanical supplements include hops, passionflower, valerian, and ashwagandha. They act as potential sedatives promoting sleep and reducing nervous restlessness.
Herbal Teas And Capsules
The multiple benefits of herbal products, especially in alleviating pain and anxiety, are the reasons for their growing popularity. Herbs such as chamomile, lavender, kava have therapeutic effects which relax the mind from unpleasant thoughts. Studies show a significant reduction in generalized anxiety disorders for those who regularly consume chamomile herb capsules. These herbs contain compounds that slow down the activities of neurotransmitters in the brain and promote relaxation.
CBD is another crucial herbal extract from cannabis that has similar calming effects. It interacts with the brain receptors and regulates serotonin production, resulting in an anxiety-free stabilized mental state. You can consume these herbs as capsules or teas after a long and tiring day of work.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
For thousands of years, Chinese health practitioners linked the troubles of the mind with physical health. The traditional Chinese methods treat the individual body and mind as one. They believe depression and anxiety disturb the ‘shen’ or our spirit. It connects to losing the meaning of life and the inability to communicate with others. It blocks the ‘qi’ or the energy to move freely through our bodies.
TCM prescribes some traditional body-mind activities to ease anxiety. Popular practices such as Tai chi, qigong help in our mental and spiritual welfare by cultivating the vital life force. Reiki enables our body to relax through the movement of hands flowing over our body. Guided imagery is another process that makes us visualize the positive situations of life where we can express ourselves happily.
Acupuncture is another popular Chinese treatment for anxiety. It uses needles to specific pressure points in the body and helps in an immediate relaxing effect on the anxious nerves.
There are various traditional Chinese herbal supplements, including ginkgo biloka and banxia houpu decoction, having anti-anxiety and anti-depressant effects. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy(CBT) is an effective psychological treatment now, often used in Chinese traditional culture. It works to challenge a person’s cognitive capabilities and behavioural patterns to change their anxious perceptions of facing adverse situations in life.
All the natural treatments react with the sensory receptors and release serotonin and endorphin hormones, which calm our mind and overall well-being.
Animal-assisted pet therapies are one of the most comfortable and enjoyable methods of treating your anxiety. It is a general approach based on the unique bond between animals and humans that makes anxious people feel safe, secured, and loved.
Pet therapies include dogs, cats, rabbits, horses, dolphins, and birds. Your therapist assigns you to spend some time with a pet in individual or group sessions. The level of joy and a sense of fulfilment that emanates from spending time with these animals positively impacts your psychological health. The unconditional love of pets and the physical affection comfort the mind. It also improves communication and social skills as you connect emotionally with the other members of the sessions.
We all are aware of the therapeutic power of music. There have been plenty of cases over the years where chronically ill or disabled patients responded to the melody of their favourite music pieces.
Playing musical instruments, singing, or merely listening to different musical genres switch you off from the chaotic surroundings and transcend you to a world of peace. Music helps you feel a range of emotions as you perceive the lyrics and the rhythm, connecting you to a spiritual level.
The brain intercepts the different styles of music, and it helps reduce the stress hormones, adrenaline, and cortisol. It uplifts your mood, erases worries, and presents you with an overall sense of calm. The soothing effects also lower down blood pressure and heart rates, promoting happiness and healthy life. The therapy sessions occur at various clinics, community health centres, private offices, or rehabilitation facilities.
It is something you must keep in mind. The moment you become anxious, try to understand the reason why it arose. Did you witness or experience something disturbing? Did some negative thoughts suddenly come to your mind? You might not always be conscious of the reason, but your subconscious recognizes it and triggers your anxiety. Critically rationalizing your thoughts is immensely effective in diminishing your anxiety. You should be honest with yourself and reflect on the validity of your thoughts. Questioning your worries creates a deeper understanding and awareness of yourself.
Try not to escape your fears to feel powerful. Instead, deal with them. If you can track down the reasons for your anxiety, remove those toxic, negative influences from your life, if possible. Paying attention to yourself validates your identity and boosts your self-esteem and confidence.
Give Time to Yourself
You have to be patient when dealing with anxiety. It challenges your life and creates an obstacle at every step you take. Yet self-care is the first step to defy anxiety. Take some time out for yourself and connect with nature. It prevents your mind from overflowing with anxious energy.
Writing also helps in expressing your frustrations and mental breakdowns while struggling with anxiety. Maintain a journal and note down your goals and the positive things that you want to experience. Verbal communication is another way to relieve your anxiety. Confide in your loved ones the troubles you face; it automatically releases a huge burden off your mind and helps you to ground yourself.
Just To End With!
Anxiety is a potential threat to happiness and successful life. There might be people who will try to invalidate your anxiety and dismiss your experiences. Don’t let their ignorance affect your mental and physical well-being. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America suggests almost 40 million people suffering from an anxiety disorder. Studies reveal more than 18% of adults in the US struggle with chronic anxiety.
So don’t neglect yourself and embrace a holistic approach to curb your anxiety by following these processes. Although today people talk more about mental health, still, many don’t realize its relevance to our physical health. An anxious and depressed mind can never promise good and prolonged health.
So seek out professional help if necessary. However, once you enter medications, you become overly dependent on such drugs which, might cure your anxiety but produce harsh side effects. Before that, you should try these healthier, natural alternatives to treat your anxiety and see the results yourself!