Anxiety. It gets talked about a lot, but what do you really know about it? It can be more complicated than you might think. Here are my top 11 facts and tips. Don"t fret though, it"s not all bad. Some may surprise you.
Sometimes, it"s useful.
Yes, it"s true! Anxiety helps us be alert. It has its roots in survival skills. The increase in adrenaline, hyper-arousal, and attention to detail that often accompany anxiety is how early hunter/gatherers were able to keep themselves safe and not become prey themselves. A certain level of alertness can help you be sure of putting your best face forward in a job interview. It"s when the anxiety short circuits in your brain and your mind turns to ruminating thoughts of worst-case scenario disasters that things can become a problem.
Exercising can help.
Movement is a great tool to help calm anxiety. Movement, such as in exercise or dance, helps give your body something to focus on. It gives it an outlet for some of that energy, giving your mind something positive to focus on instead of the thoughts that have been making you anxious. Exercise also produces endorphins, which can boost your mood and act as a natural painkiller.
Taking a break from your screens can help.
Screens can be a double-edged sword. They can help us stay connected to friends and loved ones, which can help ease anxiety and depression. However, it isn"t all a bed of roses. The blue light emitted by screens can do a powerful job at reducing your body"s ability to produce melatonin. Your sleep can become disrupted and this can lead to an increase in mental health problems, including anxiety and depression.
Some foods will make it worse.
For some individuals, certain foods can make anxiety worse. Things like highly processed, sugary and/or fatty foods can be culprits. They quickly raise your blood sugar and then send you crashing down. The rollercoaster can result in increased anxiety and depression for some. Sodas, sweets, ketchup, white bread, and juice are all some of the things that fall into this category. Caffeine - whether in the form of coffee or energy drinks - can also increase anxiety.