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6 Tips to Combat Stress and Anxiety for better health and Wellness

As a holistic health coach, I've had the privilege of guiding many individuals on their journey to greater wellbeing. One of the most common challenges my clients face is managing stress and anxiety in our fast-paced world; from contributing to high blood pressure, a weakened immune system and digestive issues, stress and anxiety, when left unaddressed, can have profound negative effects on both our physical and mental health.

The reality is that, both stress and anxiety, seem to be an expected by product of the way we are living our lives. Everywhere we go we see examples of how we are constantly expected to multitask, to do things quicker, better and for longer. But this is not a healthy, sustainable way of living. And the only way to take back control is to find some tools that are free and easy to use whenever we need to feel grounded during our busy day.

6 Tips to Combat Stress and Anxiety

So, here are my 6 Tips to Combat Stress and Anxiety for better health and Wellness naturally, simply, and sustainably:

  1. Pause and Breathe: In the midst of chaos, it's essential to carve out moments of stillness and silence. a simple yet powerful tool I come back to time and time again is box breathing (also known as square breathing or four-square breathing). It involves taking slow, deep breaths in a structured pattern, typically following a four-count rhythm. Here’s how: Inhale deeply through your nose while counting to four. Visualize drawing the breath into your abdomen, allowing it to expand fully. Hold your breath for a count of four. Keep your lungs comfortably filled but avoid straining. Slowly exhale through your mouth, counting to four as you release the breath. Empty your lungs completely. Pause for another count of four before beginning the next breath cycle. Repeat this pattern for several minutes, focusing on the rhythm of your breath and allowing your mind to relax with each exhalation. 

  2. Expand Your Awareness: Expand your perspective and shift your focus from stressors to gratitude. Start a daily gratitude practice by jotting down three things you're thankful for each day. Cultivate an attitude of appreciation for the simple joys of life, from a warm cup of tea to a beautiful sunset. By reframing your mindset and embracing positivity, you'll cultivate resilience in the face of adversity.

  3. Create Sacred Spaces: Designate sacred spaces in your home where you can retreat and recharge. Create cosy corners for reading, meditation, or quiet reflection. Surround yourself with elements that bring you joy and peace, such as plants, candles, or soothing music. Carve out time each day to connect with your sacred space and replenish your energy reserves.

  4. Cultivate Meaningful Connections: In the words of Brene Brown ‘connection is why we’re here; it is what gives purpose and meaning to our lives.’ In fact, social connection can lower anxiety and depression, help us regulate our emotions, lead to higher self-esteem and empathy, and actually improve our immune systems.

  5. Rhythmic movement: Rhythmic movement refers to any type of physical activity or exercise characterized by a steady and repetitive pattern or beat. This movement pattern synchronizes with the rhythm of the body or breath, creating a flowing motion. Whether you prefer to dance to your favourite music, go for a rhythmic walk in nature, or practice yoga with synchronized breathing, incorporating rhythmic movement into your daily routine can offer a range of physical, mental, and emotional benefits, including stress reduction. The repetitive nature of rhythmic movement promotes relaxation and stress relief by calming the nervous system and releasing tension from the body.

  6. Nourish Your Body: Did you know that the food you eat affects how you feel? Fuel your body with nutrient-rich foods that support mental and emotional wellbeing. Incorporate whole foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins into your diet to nourish your body from the inside out. Experiment with mood-boosting superfoods like dark leafy greens, omega-3-rich fish, and antioxidant-packed berries to support brain health and reduce inflammation. Here's a simple reference to help you choose the right foods for your mood:

So, there you have it – five simple yet powerful tips to combat stress and anxiety holistically. By following these tips you can start to cultivate a foundation of resilience and vitality that will carry you through life's ups and downs. Remember, wellness is not a destination but a journey, so embrace each moment with grace and gratitude. Here's to living a life filled with joy & peace!

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