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12 Ways of Managing Anxiety over Christmas.

As the UK goes into lockdown over Christmas and many plans and celebrations have been disrupted due to the new strain of coronavirus, anxiety and stress levels are sure to go up at this time of year. So what can we do to relieve the stress before it builds into an anxiety disorder or depression.

1: Focus on what you can control!

None of us has control over the macro environment, but you do have control over your micro environment. You choose when to eat,when to sleep, when to watch telly, and how much time to spend on devices. When you can focus on these areas, the areas that you can control, and stop focusing on the areas you can’t, letting go of the negative emotional thoughts that you have towards things that you cannot control in your life, you will find a greater inner peace.

2: Identify and challenge negative thoughts.

Try to be mindful of when you start to have negative thoughts. Every time you have a negative thought, it accumulates and grows, which leads you into a vicious cycle of negativity. Whenever you’re having fearful thoughts, take a step back and ask yourself if it is real. Do you need to react? How should you react? By challenging yourself before reacting, you’ll often find you calm down and react better to a situation.

3: Learn to breathe.

By learning how to breathe, you can control any anxiety before panic attacks may occur. Start by learning to slow down your breathing. Think about taking a deep breath in, and as you do so, count to 4. Then hold that deep breath for 4, and then release for the count of 7 and repeat till it passes.

Every time you take a deep breath in, breathe in through your nose and exhale out through your mouth. By focusing on your breathing, you can control your anxiety.

4: Practice self-meditation.

We often hear about mindfulness and self-meditation. However, very few of us are actually capable of doing it ourselves. What is self-meditation? By using a guided meditation/hypnosis recording, you can meditate very easily at home or anywhere. Check out my free stress tool kit for an MP3 guided meditation.

5: Do some light exercise.

By doing some light exercise every day, be it a walk or yoga, even just up and down the stairs several times, you are increasing your serotonin levels which in return helps you stay stress free.

6: Occupy your mind.

When you are busy, you are less likely to think about things that are worrying or bothering you. Read a book, exercise, go for a walk, or take up a new hobby maybe painting, sewing, cooking or woodwork. Watch a funny film, or listen to comedians. When you laugh, you feel good as the brain releases all the feel-good chemicals.

8: Use affirmations.

Stand in front of the mirror every day and say something nice to yourself as if you were talking to your best friend. Let them know that they are good enough, pretty enough, or even that everything will be okay. Whatever it is that you’re worrying about, put a positive spin on it, and use it as an affirmation for yourself each day.

9: Write down your thoughts.

Writing down your thoughts can often be cathartic, especially if there is no one else to discuss things with. Every so often, we need to just sometimes verbalise what is going on inside our minds by writing it down, so you are allowing it to be released.

10: Make love.

For those of you in a relationship, make love not war. Sex is one of the best ways of releasing oxytocin and the feel good chemicals in the brain. For others not in a relationship connect with the ones your love family, friends online or by phone.

11: Sleep

I getting a good nights sleep we allow the primitive emotional brain to deal with any stress that has occurred throughout the day. Helping you to cope better tomorrow.

12: Newsnight

As the news has so much negative talk particularly at present it’s a good idea to limit yourself to how much you watch of it and avoid watching it before going to bed. When you go to sleep you want to go to bed with pleasant thoughts in your mind, so you get a good nights sleep.

On that note, I will leave you just knowing that none of us have control over this damned virus, but we certainly do have control over our own lives. Be the hero over your own destiny and remember, you don’t have put prressure on yourself, to be happy and merry. Just be at peace with yourself this Christmas.

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