Saturday, 13 February 2016

10 Tips for Anxiety Sufferers | #AnxietyTalks


Mental health is something I have wanted to introduce to my blog since I started Chapters of Kat really. Having been diagnosed with anxiety and depression from the age of 14, I wanted to finally speak up about it and start a sort of mini series, #AnxietyTalks.

As I reached my late teens, anxiety became the main focus of my life and pretty much took over every aspect of it. I lost many friends, my independence and became a shadow of myself.
Anxiety can be brought on by various factors and is different for every single person. For instance, my anxiety is triggered by feelings of being overwhelmed, being surrounded by large groups of people and low self esteem. 
But anyway, enough with the rambling! The aim of this post is to share some of things I have found useful over the years for those days when you need a little pick me up or you feel like things are just too much. 

+ Don't Hide Away
Probably something I should do less of. When anxiety looms over you, the easiest answer to it is tucking yourself up into a duvet burrito and not leaving your bed for hours. Go for a walk, interact with your family, go for lunch with a friend! Being around people is a huge mood booster for me, especially those that will sit and listen to me babble on about my brain for hours.

+ Exercise
The dreaded word, exercise. It may be daunting but once I've worked out I feel so much better. When I'm going through a low period, I think back to how good I feel after exercise and do a workout. At the moment I'm really enjoying the Blogilates YouTube channel and couldn't recommend her videos enough.

+ Self Care
One of the most important but easily forgettable things is to actually stop and take time for yourself. Treat yourself to some new skincare, a bath bomb and set a little pamper night up including lots of goodies and movies. 

+ Make Future Plans
Believe it or not, my planner really eases my anxiety. I look ahead to the future and find a reason to be excited for them, whether that's a shopping trip or a holiday. I enjoy looking at the monthly overview of my planner and seeing what positive things I have to look forward to. I don't know how but for some reason, it makes me feel calmer.

+ Avoid Caffeine
Caffeine increases blood pressure, meaning it can trigger anxiety, which isn't exactly helpful when you can't function in a morning without the stuff. Instead of having coffee in a morning, I've switched to having a cup of decaf tea. 

+ Buy a Colouring Book
Adult colouring books are all at the rage at the moment and come in really handy for those who may struggle to relax. Time flies as you sit and colour all the intricate designs, who knew colouring would be so soothing?

+ De-stress/Calming Apps
There's an app for basically anything now. The ones that help me the most are apps that play soothing and relaxing sounds. I go through periods of suffering from awful insomnia, a side effect of my anxiety and the apps help to ease it and do a world of wonders. Ones that offer yoga techniques are apparently great too, something I'd like to get into in the future.

+ Balanced Diet
It's been proven that junk food = low moods. I do have days where I just want to sit and scoff pizza and trust me, those days do happen regularly but I've also learnt about balance. Eating better and an increased water intake helps my overall mindset, meaning more anxiety free days.

+ Breathing Techniques
Pretty self explanatory and maybe obvious to some but this is something I only discovered in the past year or so. Whenever I feel panicked, especially when out in public, I take a minute to stop, breathe slowly and block everything out around me. Concentrating on taking sips of water also soothes any panic I may be feeling.

+ Don't Be Afraid to Talk About It
Be open about your anxiety! If you don't want to tell a person, tell a diary or what the heck, put it in a blog post. Anxiety leads to overthinking and honestly, I always feel so much better when I've spoken to someone about it.

If you, like me, also struggle with anxiety, what techniques do you find most helpful?
This post was quite personal to write so I hope you liked it! Feel free to let me know if there's any particular posts on anxiety you'd like to see? I can't wait to get started on this series.

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39 comments

  1. Such a great post! I've only been diagnosed with anxiety back in August but i've been struggling with it for years now. Like you, one of my biggest triggers is feeling overwhelmed and when I feel stressed out. These are really great tips! I still haven't really figured out how to handle my anxiety very well but i'm definitely going to try these out :)

    Renee | Lose the Road

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    1. Oh I'm sorry to hear that! The things that help me tend to be the most obvious and simple activities but they really work. :)

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  2. Ahh YouTube fitness is a life saver. It's free and really good. I love Fitness Blender as well - I sweat so much with their workouts!

    Also Yoga With Adriene is great for my anxiety (YouTube), would really recommend!

    Eleanor
    elleanorwears.com

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    1. I hadn't heard of either of those until now, definitely going to check them out. Thanks for the recommendations, I've been meaning to get back into working out regularly at home!

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  3. I totally love all of these - they're so true. Planning things out really helps me too - it puts everything in its place so I don't need to stress about it all right now!
    Thanks for sharing - look forward to hearing more :-)
    JH | www.hellojenniferhelen.com

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  4. I got an Adult Colouring Book a few months ago and it really does help. I find when my anxiety is bad i do just shut myself in my room and over think things which is something i need to get out of.
    Emma | Emmys Beauty Cave | Bloglovin

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    1. Oh I do this too, I just try not to get into a habit of it and pull myself out of it which is obviously easier said than done! I hope you're ok. x

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  5. Really excited for this mini series lovely!! I totally agree with all your tips, particularly being around people, I find that my mood completely changes and I'm much less anxious around people I'm comfortable with! I also really like guided therapy, I dont know if thats what it's called? But when I was at my worst and I'd have attacks during the night, it really helped to have voice recordings of people I love reciting a story or breathing techniques to me. It sounds kind of creepy but it really helped!
    Hope all is well lovely XX

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    1. Aw thank you, that makes me excited to get started on it! I'm glad you can relate to being around people that are uplifting.
      Oh I hadn't heard of that before, I'll definitely have a look into it. Thanks lovely! xx

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  6. I have my anxiety pretty under control at the moment, but there are times when it just spills out, and I have a freak out.
    This was such a great post, Kat! ❤❤
    Angie | Chocolate & Lipstick | Beauty, Fashion & Lifestyle Blog

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    1. I'm sure a lot of people can relate, I know I can. I hope you're ok! xx

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  7. I haven't anxiety and I try to talk about it but it's quite difficult but I found that relaxation apps and breathing meditation help x

    www.ofbeautyandnothingness.co.uk

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    1. They really do help. There are so many apps out there for all kinds of things at the moment. x

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  8. Such a lovely post, it's so nice that you feel able to talk about your struggles and share your tips. I find that peppermint tea is really good for calming me down when I get anxious, and doing things - even if it's just changing my bedding or having a blog reading session I find that doing something I can tick of a to do list really helps my anxiety

    Emily xx | emilyclairewrites.com

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    1. I'm not too keen on peppermint tea (or mint in general) but I'm glad it works for you, I heard it's really helpful for many. It's so important to do something, even if it's just a simple task, if you can feel your mood getting low! x

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  9. These are fantastic tips! I haven't been diagnosed with anxiety but I definitely suffer from a certain level of it! It can all be over whelming some times! I really want to pick up a colouring book soon x

    http://thriftyvintagefashion.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Oh lovely, if it starts to affect your day to day life then definitely go and see your GP. Colouring books are fab! x

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  10. This was really helpful! I don't have anxiety to a extent it affects me too much but self esteem is always something that drags me back and dwindles my friends. Probably that I'm quite a negative person too. Always wanted a group of girlfriends to go out with for meals etc as I spend a lot of time at home. But exercise does make you feel so much better, it's gave me something to do lately! xx

    Tamz | http://www.throughneweyesx.com

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    1. Ah I can relate with the low self esteem, I must drive people nuts sometimes! If we lived closer I'd totally be your meal buddy, I spend way too much time inside. xx

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  11. Hey Kat, I've suffered with anxiety for seven years it's really brave of you to share your story. Personally I practice yoga every day to help with my anxiety, either by attending a class or using online classes such as Yoga with Adriene on youtube. Other than that I try really hard not to bottle up my feelings and reach out to others when I need help. Thanks for sharing <3

    From Emily @ Emily Rose Vass

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    1. Thank you lovely. I really want to have a look at doing some yoga, I'm anything for a de-stress technique! x

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  12. I love that you mentioned planning ahead. This always gets me out of an episode. Thinking about the future makes the present misery seem so small, doesn't it?

    I've been suffering from anxiety for a few years now- three I think? (I write about it on my blog if you want to connect there.) I never understood how crippling it could be until I was faced with it myself. I remember a time when I couldn't go to Walmart without hyperventilating, but I've come so far since then!

    Always look back and see the progress you've made. Every tiny step matters. And you matter. <3

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    1. It really does. Thank you for sharing your experiences of anxiety with me. I hope things are getting better for you, I'll always be here if you need someone to message. xxx

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  13. I completely got rid of caffeine i didnt realise how badly it was affecting me

    www.beautyandtheboy.com

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    1. A lot of people don't realise how much it can affect anxiety!

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  14. Exercise is the best thing for me when I'm feel a bit stressed or anxious, although it can also be the first thing I don't want to do when it happens!

    Corinne x
    www.skinnedcartree.com

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    1. I know the feeling haha! I'm determined to push myself to start working out to ease my anxiety. x

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  15. This is so helpful!! I have a worry eater that helps me but breathing exercises are brilliant for on the go and when I'm feeling stressed or anxious :) xx

    Yasmina | The July Journal

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    1. Definitely, slow and deep breaths help me so much, especially if I'm out of the house!xx

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  16. Love this post doll! I will be helping myself to a few of those tips too! Hope your doing okay! Xo

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    1. Thanks girl! I hope you're feeling much better now lovely. xx

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  17. This is an incredible post and such valuable advice, hon! Anxiety is not a joke nor a choice and needs more awareness among people on both sides.
    There are so many things I want to say about your great tips but this comment will become an essay. But I will just say that being around people we love, balanced nutrition, good sleep pattern, different de-stressing techniques and activities and talking about it - it all sounds spot-on and it's so helpful!
    p.s. Good luck with the interview! Let me know later how your back is today, love. Hope you are feeling much better!
    xox Nadia
    http://www.mielandmint.com/

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  18. I found this post incredibly helpful and I love the idea of the series Anxiety talks! All those tips are things I do to prevent my anxiety ❤️
    http://www.dellalovesnutella.co.uk/

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  19. I've just been diagnosed with depression & anxiety and this post has helped me so much, thank you Kat. You're seriously a star! So much love for you girl <3

    Holly | www.thekittyluxe.com

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  20. This post is so amazingly written Kat - I don't suffer from anxiety but I know it is not something you choose to live with.. And it can be so difficult to get your head around - people don't take it seriously. I am so happy you have tips for yourself/others to help them ..you know I am always here if you ever want a ramble/chat/rant/cry ... Carry on being you babes because you are so amazing !
    Saira
    www.throughtheglitterglass.wordpress.com
    Xxx

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  21. This tips are perfect. I was definitely guilty of hiding away and pretending it wasn't happening. I have shared this post with a few friends that I know also suffer with it, I can't explain how much this will help them and me. Big hugs to you, you're blooming amazing!

    Hannah xx

    www.thatthoughtfulgirl.blogspot.co.uk

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  22. Really great post! I've found counselling and CBT to be really helpful too <3

    Four Cats Plus Us x

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  23. This is such a great post. I totally agree about the planner tip. I also like to do lists as they set out what needs to be done in a clear way and it feels good each time I tick something off. I've also mostly cut caffeine out of my diet. I used to drink up to 10 cups of tea a day. Now I can feel my anxiety rise a lot more even after one cup. I also drink decaf coffee and if you drink instant coffee you really can't taste the difference. I've come a long way with my anxiety but it's still a daily thing. I think it's awesome being surrounded by people that understand and being able to talk about it. :)

    Sara Bloo xo
    bloonstuff.com

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  24. I don't suffer with anxiety but I actually think some of these techniques would be great even if I'm stressed about something, great post!

    Sophie | www.astoldby-sophie.blogspot.co.uk

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