Finding A Natural Balance
For much of my life, I struggled trying to figure out how to get rid of my own anxiety.
Incorporating natural alternatives like exercise and meditation and supplementing my diet with herbs for natural anxiety relief brought me feeling of well-being Id been seeking for years.
I now find it much easier to control my moods, and tend to just be happier on a day-to-day basis.
In short: everything in life feels easier.
When it comes to natural anxiety help, do you have any strategies for easing your symptoms?Let us know what works for you by commenting below!
Volunteering Can Be A Great Way To Do Both
Knock out a few birds with one stone spending time with other people and doing something new by volunteering and giving your time to someone or something else.
You may be used to receiving help from friends, but reaching out and providing help may actually improve your mental health more.
Bonus: People who volunteer experience physical benefits, too. This includes a
Give Yourself A Break
Inadequate sleeping patterns are the most widely researched phenomenon in regards to depression and anxiety. Franzen and Buysses 2011 research discovered that over 90% of those struggling with depression also complain of sleep problems. Additionally, insomnia is considered a significant risk factor for eventually developing depression in otherwise healthy adults.
The National Institute of Mental Health agrees that more research is needed, but there is mounting evidence that preventing sleep disturbances can also prevent depression, reduce anxiety, and other mental health crisis. Hundreds of studies have collaborated on these findings.
For these reasons, sleep is very important and we should make sleeping well a priority in your life. Resist the urge to prioritize work, entertainment or even family over your health and well-being. If you are having problems sleeping, then make it a point to talk to your doctor. Dont minimize the real consequences sleep disturbances are having on your life.
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Healing From Depression The 6 Proven Non
Depression steals people. So far, despite the colossal investment of resources, there is still no reliably effective treatment. What we know for sure is that antidepressants just arent working. According to Dr Stephen Ilardi, respected psychologist, university professor and author of The Depression Cure: The 6-Step Program to Beat Depression Without Drugs, antidepressants only have about a 50% success rate. Out of the people who do find relief, half of them will relapse, taking the actual recovery rate to 25%. Then there are the side effects, such as emotional blunting, weight gain and sexual dysfunction.
When antidepressants fail to deliver, the hopelessness that lies at the heart of depression becomes even more brutal. If we could immunise ourselves and the people we love against depression, wed be lining up. There is no immunisation, but a growing body of research is finding that there are ways to protect ourselves from depression and alleviate any existing symptoms, particularly for mild to moderate depression.
Its about certain lifestyle factors six of them and the difference they can make to each of us, depressed or otherwise, is phenomenal. The claims may sound extravagant, but science is proving them over and over. The evidence is too compelling for us not to take notice.
Take Time To Meditate
When it comes to holistic ways to treat anxiety, meditation can be very effective. Meditating involves sitting quietly, breathing evenly and becoming more aware of your surroundings. It helps you focus on the present moment, not something in the future thats making you worry. Try starting out with 10 minutes of meditation a day.
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Look After Your Physical Health
- Think about what you eat and drink. Eating a balanced and nutritious diet may help to manage some of your symptoms. Drinking plenty of water can also help your mental wellbeing. See our pages on food and mood for more information. If you have a difficult relationship with food and eating, our pages on eating problems may help.
- Try to be more active. Many people find regular physical activity helps to lift their mood, boost their energy levels and keep them grounded in reality. See our pages on physical activity and your mental health for more information.
- Try to get enough sleep. Getting enough sleep can sometimes feel difficult. But having a good amount of quality sleep is very helpful for your mental health. See our pages on sleep problems for more information.
Eat More Whole Foods Less Processed Foods
We all know that a balanced diet helps us feel better and can protect us from a huge array of diseases.
But if you feel like you need to diet, this can cause you more anxiety! Instead, experiment with nutrient-dense whole foods that you truly enjoy, and focus on eating those as often as possible.
Lean proteins such as fish, organic chicken, beans, and eggs provide fuel for your body and brain to keep your energy levels constant.
Asparagus, leafy greens, meat, and avocado contain nutrients that can reduce the symptoms of anxiety, as can omega-3-rich foods like fish, green leafy vegetables, nuts, and seeds.
Even when youre eating a healthy diet, it can still be difficult to get all the nutrients you need, which is why it can be helpful to take natural supplements for anxiety.
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Tap Into Your Spirituality
Religion can be an impactful source of support for many people dealing with depression, but there is no need to join a church, synagogue, or mosque unless you wish to. Simple daily practices such as meditation or adding to a list of things you’re grateful can help boost mood and overall well-being.
Meditation can have a range of beneficial effects such as lowering stress levels and helping people to become more aware of their thoughts and reactions.
Research indicates that an intervention called mindfulness-based cognitive therapy , which combines elements of cognitive behavioral therapy with mindfulness meditation, can be helpful in treating depression and preventing future relapses of symptoms.
Studies also suggest that different types of mindfulness meditative practices can also be effective in the treatment of depression.
There are many different types of meditation, but you can get started with a simple meditative exercise with these steps:
Psychotherapy Focuses On Thoughts And Behaviors
Psychotherapy, or talk therapy, is designed to help people identify and effectively deal with the psychological, behavioral, interpersonal, and situational aspects of their depression.
Each type of psychotherapy has different goals. According to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, these goals include helping people in these ways:
- Adjust to a crisis or other current situational difficulty.
- Identify negative or distorted beliefs and behaviors, and replace them with positive, healthy ones. Or create a list of more realistic beliefs to balance out the distorted ones when they occur.
- Identify life problems that contribute to depression and change behaviors that worsen it.
- Address relationships and experiences to improve interactions with other people.
- Develop skills to better cope with stress and solve problems.
- Identify issues in life that feed into depression and learn how to avoid behaviors that make these problems worse.
- Regain a sense of control and satisfaction in life to counter symptoms of depression such as anger and hopelessness.
- Learn how to set realistic life goals.
- Develop healthier behaviors that enhance the ability to tolerate and accept stress.
There are four common types of psychotherapy used to treat depression:
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Guided Imagery And Music Therapy
Guided imagery is a form of meditation in which you envision a goal in as much detail as you can. This technique uses the power of positive thinking to help attain something specific, like happiness.
Music therapy has been used to help improve the moods of people with depression. Sometimes it involves listening to music that promotes relaxation and positivity. Other times, it involves singing as a form of therapy.
One study showed that both of these therapy types could help decrease stress and improve mood.
Practice These Coping Skills Every Day
I recommend doing many if not all of the following coping skills and techniques once a day when experiencing depression. Its important to know you probably wont be motivated to do any of them at first because depression frequently saps motivation. In other words, know that its normal to feel unmotivated until youre halfway done.
The patients I work with who frequently practice these coping skills get better.The seven techniques can be memorized with the acronym MY PEERS.
1. Meaning: Find small ways to be of service to others.
Find personal meaning by serving something larger than yourself. Remember service doesnt have to be big to count. Consider this, Success, like happiness, cannot be pursued it must ensue as the unintended side effect of ones personal dedication to a course greater than oneself. Viktor E. Frankl, Mans Search for Meaning
2. Your goals: Find workable goals that give you a sense of accomplishment.
Most people feel guilty when talking about goals because they set unreasonable or unworkable goals. A goal is workable if its:
If something goes wrong with your goal, adopt a what can I learn from this? attitude . Also, be careful when comparing your progress with others. We usually compare our biggest weakness with another persons biggest strength. This is unfair .
3. Pleasant Events: Schedule pleasant activities or events.
4. Engagement: Stay in the present.
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Do I Need Health Insurance To Receive This Service
The referral service is free of charge. If you have no insurance or are underinsured, we will refer you to your state office, which is responsible for state-funded treatment programs. In addition, we can often refer you to facilities that charge on a sliding fee scale or accept Medicare or Medicaid. If you have health insurance, you are encouraged to contact your insurer for a list of participating health care providers and facilities.
Learn How To Build Resilience
Dr. Southwick defines resilience as the ability to bend, but not break, and even to grow from adversity in ones life. When setbacks inevitably occur in life, it can be truly traumatic for someone who is already suffering from mental health issues. It can seem almost impossible to take a bad situation and look at the positive aspects or the possibility of positive things coming from it.
It is possible to build up this power to overcome adversity. Dr. Southwick recommends finding support in a social network, educating yourself on how to manage stress and getting spiritual as the three most important keys to gaining resilience. The spiritual path focuses on obtaining a beneficial connection with something more significant than oneself. We can find this through religion, but we can also find it by holding onto values such as love and respect or even through nature.
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Prioritize Getting A Good Nights Rest
Sleep has been proven time and time again to be an important part of good mental health.
Even though a 2012 survey found that nearly a third of adults get less than 6 hours of sleep a night, the that adults get 7 to 9 hours of sleep every day.
You can make sleep a priority by:
- only sleeping at night when youre tired
- not reading or watching television in bed
- not using your phone, tablet, or computer in bed
- not tossing and turning in your bed or going to another room if you cant sleep
- avoiding caffeine, large meals, and nicotine before bedtime
- keeping your room dark and cool
- writing down your worries before going to bed
- going to sleep at the same time each night
What Is Samhsa’s National Helpline
SAMHSAs National Helpline, , or TTY: is a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service, in English and Spanish, for individuals and family members facing mental and/or substance use disorders. This service provides referrals to local treatment facilities, support groups, and community-based organizations.
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How To Stop Being Depressed
Be patient and compassionate with yourself. For someone with depression, even the smallest tasks can seem impossible. On some days, if you cant find the energy to go for a walk, then just stand outside for a little while and get some fresh air. If you cant make a healthy meal for yourself, try to eat a piece of fruit. If you are finding yourself unable to sleep, consider learning meditation or other relaxation techniques. If you are sleeping all the time, consider and find out ways to spend less time in bed. These things may not make your depression go away, but they may make your day feel a lot more easier.
Whether you are able to do all the above or not, it is important for you to make sure to limit or curtail alcohol or substance use or abuse. Use of these substances may worsen your symptoms of depression or interfere with your prescribed medications.
This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
Sri Sri Yoga Teacher, YACEP, Art of Living Teacher, NYU Post Graduate Medical School approved Yoga-CME retreat facilitator, Mind-Body Wellness Writer, Homeopath
St Johns Wort: A Possible Herbal Solution
St. Johns wort is a popular herbal treatment for depression in Europe. American physicians are more divided about its usefulness.
According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine , St. Johns wort doesnt appear to be effective in treating major depression. But it may benefit people with mild-to-moderate forms.
St. Johns wort may have serious interactions with medications, herbs, and supplements. To be safe, always consult your doctor before taking it.
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Meditate And Practice Mindfulness
A main goal of meditation is full awareness of the present moment, which includes noticing all thoughts in a nonjudgmental way. This can lead to a sense of calm and contentment by increasing your ability to mindfully tolerate all thoughts and feelings.
Meditation is known to relieve stress and anxiety and is a primary facet of CBT.
Research from John Hopkins suggests 30 minutes of daily meditation may alleviate some anxiety symptoms and act as an antidepressant.
Ok Im Feeling Depressed So Now What
Now that you know the symptoms of depression, some positive coping skills can be useful. All of the following techniques are supported by scientific research and medication prescribers like psychiatrists and these skills are frequently recommended as important parts of treatment even for patients who continue to take antidepressant medications.
WARNING: Do not suddenly go off your prescribed antidepressant medications without first talking to your medical provider. Discuss any questions or concerns about the side effects of your medications with your provider.
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What Alternative Therapies Are Recommended For Depression
No alternative therapy is guaranteed to cure depression, but the same can be said about several Western medicines and psychotherapies. To be safe, be sure to consult with your healthcare provider before you try one or more of these recommended therapies:
- Herbal remedies: Herbal remedies are made from plants. Of the wide variety of available herbal therapies, St. John’s wort and ginkgo biloba are the products most often used for treating depression.
- Acupuncture: Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese method of healing that prevents and cures specific diseases and conditions.
- Reflexology: For this treatment, the reflexologist applies pressure to different pressure points on your feet, hands, ears and face.
- Exercise: In general, exercise is a safe and easy way to improve your well-being.
- Meditation: Meditation is a form of relaxation and introspection.
- Massage: Massage uses touch to promote relaxation while decreasing tension and stress.
- Guided imagery: Guided imagery is a form of focused relaxation that helps create harmony between the mind and body.
- Yoga: Yoga is a type of exercise and spiritual practice.
- Deep breathing: Taking slow, deep breaths in, then slowly exhaling, while your mind focuses on the breath.
How To Lower Stress By Seeing No Value In It
One of the quickest ways to stop being stressed is to simply see no value in it, other than how it alerts you to opportunities for improvement in your life, and to see a great deal of value of being calm and relaxed, instead.
Heres why: when your mind appreciates that being stressed is of no value to you, your mind will be far more cooperative letting go of stressful, negative thoughts that make you feel stressed in the first place.
For this reason, make sure you dont see any value in being stressed, like thinking that stress somehow energizes and motivates you to get things done, or thinking that stress is normal and therefore good for you.
After all, stress ultimately leaves you feeling exhuausted, and makes it harder for you to think clearly, so it clearly doesnt help you get more things done. Also, even if stress is completely normal, it still isnt any good for you, since it has a negative effect on your well being.
The only helplful thing stress does is it alerts you that there are opportunties for improvement in your life, and that its in your best interest to improve your thinking and situation in some way to eliminate the stress. Other than this, the stress is of no value to you whatsoever.
Once this is completely clear to you, your mind will naturally help you replace stressful, negative thinking with more positive ways of thinking that make you feel more calm and relaxed and help you enjoy greater peace of mind.
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