Before I end the year with my personal reflections, I thought it might be helpful for my readers to know what I usually do to keep my anxiety at bay

The best thing that anyone can do is make their own type of routine, or what I call, a “toolkit” of habits. This is just a general guideline, and some of my habits might not work for everyone, but it’s better to start somewhere than nowhere at all.

(1) Get a good nights sleep 

Easier said than done, I know – but I invested in blackout curtains, and it has been a complete game-changer to ensure that I get a good quality sleep. Others can invest in earplugs, white noise machines, or ASMR videos. Whatever it is to help you get the best sleep, DO IT. Get into a good routine and stick to it.

(2) Make yourself a morning person

I used to enjoy nights and staying up late, but I noticed that all of the overthinking that I would inevitably do happened around this time. I can’t stop it for the most part, but I saw that going to bed early did make me a better person and more cheerful in the morning. I try to practice some meditation each morning, through the app “Calm” to get my day started

(3) Make sure you get exercise

Not saying to go overboard here, but if you can get at least 3 days of working out into your schedule, you’ll notice that you won’t be that walking zombie. It’s been hard for me to get back into the groove of things since having a baby, and I feel lethargic. I downloaded the app “7M Workout” to help me get back, even this small step is helpful to focus on something other than your anxiety.

(4) Write

You don’t have to be as public as I am with my blog, but if you start journaling, you’ll see that it can help process your thoughts. Even if it’s just a couple of words of how you feel or a sentence of what happened – it’ll help.

(5) Limit Social Media 

A lot of people have FOMO, but I’ve noticed that the more time I spend on social media, the more anxious I am over news and expectations. Since having a kid, it’s been easier to not log on regularly, and I’m so much happier not knowing everything all the time.

This can be hard for some people, but a significant first step for this is to not login several hours before you go to bed. It makes it so much simpler to fall asleep

(6) Watch Horror Movies

This probably sounds weird, but if you allow yourself to release all your anxiety in a safe space, then you’ll find that you can get less anxious throughout the day. My release is horror movies in the comfort of my own home during the daylight because I’m a wuss.

Don’t forget

If you find yourself in a panic attack the best thing you can do is practice grounding and breathing exercises

grounding tech

Breathing can be a challenge when you have anxiety.

When I become aware of my breath, I sometimes get a feeling in the pit of my stomach that I might be focusing too much on it. This can make my breathing irregular – which then makes me think “Am I breathing because I NEED to or because I’m focusing on it??” 

Yes, it’s possible to over-think breathing. 

How do I deal with it?

Sometimes I make sure to get moving. Going outside for fresh air is always key! However, there are days when just the thought of moving can be a struggle. In this case, I turn to breathing exercises like the one below

With the holidays right around the corner, don’t forget to breathe!