DISCLAIMER: The following post outlines the writer’s personal experience with mental health. It is not intended to act as medical advice. As always, please consult your doctor with any questions about how to improve your mental health.
Hi, my name is Carmin, and I live with anxiety.
There, I said it, and I can’t take it back. I have never said it out loud, in public, in writing, and it is pretty freeing! This wasn’t something I knew right away. I recently was able to put a “label” on it about two years ago, when we all were forced to sit with our feelings. Back in 2015, I had my first panic attack. I was at work, and was experiencing what I was sure was a heart attack–chest tightness, numbness in my left arm, sweats, hyperventilation. It was scary to say the least.
Fast forward to April 2020, at a routine 20-week check-up with my daughter, and I was told I was in pre-labor and needed to be rushed to have emergency surgery for having an incompetent cervix. She was born at 32 weeks. It was then that I began experiencing moments of shortness of breath, tightness in my chest, trembles whenever something new was happening, and a continuing sense of unease. These symptoms sometimes happened all at once, or just two or three.
According to Web MD, anxiety is a normal emotion; it’s your brain’s way of reacting to stress and letting you know there could be potential danger ahead. Everyone feels anxious now and then. For example, you may worry when faced with a problem at work, before taking a test, or before making an important decision. Occasional anxiety is okay. But anxiety disorders are different.
Life is ever-changing, and sometimes coping with change or uncertainty can be challenging. I have found five things that have helped me treat my anxiety naturally.
Dr. Peace Lily: CBD
Dr. Peace Lily, created by Dr. Najifa Choudhury, empowers the consumer to holistically supplement their lifestyle in a pure, natural way by providing high quality CBD-based products applicable to all of life’s experiences. Their gummies and tincture help me when I have a big presentation to complete.
Brain Dump: Journaling
Anxiety comes full force when you become overwhelmed. Writing those thoughts out is a helpful way to decompress. Grab some vibrant markers, your favorite mantra, and let the words flow out.
Breathwork: Somatic Coach Lauryn Laszczak
Taking a step back is sometimes necessary, and I was introduced to the concept of breathwork at a retreat hosted by Retreat to Reclaim, with founders Elizabeth Lewis and Lauryn Laszczak. The release that the breathwork gives is transformative and pushes you to slow down, and be present.
Getting Active: Walking + Yoga
It is true, being active does help you to decompress! Taking a solo walk or joining a yoga class where you can be in tune with your body can relieve the anxiousness you may feel.
Tea Time: Limiting Your Caffeine Intake
Trust me, I’m the girl who runs on coffee and five hours of sleep, but this takes a toll on your body! Getting a good night of sleep and swapping your morning coffee for your favorite brand of chamomile tea could be just the sip you need to settle into yourself and reduce anxiety.
Taking care of yourself does not always require taking a multitude of vitamins or spending tons of money. These holistic measures may help to decrease the symptoms of anxiety.