Prolonged stress and anxiety can have long-term effects on our mental and physical health by compromising how our immune system functions.
This is why highly stressed people are more likely to get sick and have higher risks of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.
Fortunately, it’s fairly easy to alleviate stress and anxiety through relaxation. If you’re not accustomed to taking care of your mental health, here are a few activities you can try.
Enjoy Nature’s Remedies
There are many supplements you can take that can be found in nature and which are concentrated into a dietary supplement.
For example, a recent study found that college students who took Omega-3 fatty acid supplements had a 20% decrease in their anxiety symptoms. A caffeine-free serving of green tea can also reduce stress by giving the body a boost of serotonin levels.
Alternatively, enjoying marijuana where it’s legal can also help the body relax. For instance, cannabis delivery San Diego can help you enjoy this alternative without having to leave your home.
These options will help you keep your stress and anxiety levels low without taking prescription drugs that may pollute your body with unnatural chemicals.
Most people that are highly stressed don’t exercise at all or they spend the bare minimum of 30 minutes a day engaged in physical activity. If this sounds like your lifestyle, getting more exercise each day will help you alleviate stress.
When you take on too much responsibility, your brain releases stress hormones to help you cope with those challenges. However, exercising causes the release of endorphins or “feel good” neurotransmitters, which combat the effects of stress hormones.
This process helps to stabilize your mood, while ensuring you’ll feel less anxious about the stressors in your life.
Spend Time With Your Pet
If you’re an animal lover, don’t underestimate the power of bonding with a cat or dog. Research has found that people experience stronger positive emotions through the simple act of petting an animal.
The love the pet returns is equally powerful, helping to reinforce those good feelings. Pet therapy has been helpful in controlling symptoms of depression, anxiety, and fear, which is why it has been used to help Alzheimer’s patients, veterans suffering from PTSD, and victims of abuse.
It can also help you by giving you the love and affection you need in times of high stress or anxiety.
Experience the Joy of Music Therapy
Music has the power to inspire emotions and stir up memories from the past, but this can work in both negative and positive ways.
For example, fast-paced music that uses loud drums and percussion instruments will be jarring for the mind. This type of music will likely produce angry or agitated emotions. Music that has a softer tone or slower tempo will produce the opposite effects, stirring up joyful memories and inspiring warm emotions.
Some examples of music that positively influences mood and memory are Celtic and Native American folk music. This type of music uses soft drumming and flutes to produce an enchanting sound that helps the mind relax.
Alternatively, try listening to recordings of thunderstorms, crashing waves, or windy evenings. The sounds of nature can be equally relaxing.
Have a Good Laugh
The power of laughter can’t be dismissed out of hand, especially when considering its effect on mental health.
Physically, laughter causes the muscles to contract and relax, helping to reduce internal inflammation.
For the mind, laughter combats the anxiety you feel, forcing the brain to slow or stop the production of stress hormones.
You can encourage this process by watching videos of stand-up comics, binging your favorite sitcom, or watching a good comedy movie.
Seek out friends with a good sense of humor as well. By looking for more opportunities to laugh, you’ll be focusing on the positive aspects of life, and you’ll feel less stressed in general.
Each individual is different, so all of the previously mentioned tips may not work for you. If you don’t feel relaxed or experience an improved mood after trying something, look for another activity. When you focus on things that relax you or things you enjoy doing, you’ll distract your mind and inhibit the production of stress hormones. In turn, you’ll feel healthier and happier.