Alternate Ways to Calm You Down
In today’s society, everything is fast-paced. Either you believe that you need to rush through things or society places pressure on you to do things faster — either way, you can sometimes feel on an eternal “treadmill” that never seems to stop. It is unfortunate, but a lot of the pressure we put on ourselves is self-induced. We allow outside pressures to affect our mental state, just for the sake of being “on track” with everyone else. The truth of the matter is, because you feel stressed about what you should be doing, you can get distracted by what is healthy for you and what you enjoy. This stress of performing to society’s standards, or even the standards you have created for yourself, can cause intense fits of anxiety.
Today, it is estimated that 18.1 percent of American adults suffer from some sort of anxiety disorder. In fact, the United States pays $42 billion in order to pay for anxiety meds for their citizens. Of course, this is only a fraction of the actual total the US pays for mental health medications in the US. You may ask, “Is there a better, healthier way to treat anxiety?” There is!
Luckily, there are more natural ways to treat your anxiety that don’t require money or fill yourself with pills. Though our brains are vastly complicated, they can be taught or trained to respond to certain stimuli. This ability to manipulate your thoughts is why natural treatments are so much more effective than pharmaceutical therapy.
In this blog, we will continue to discuss alternate ways to calm yourself down and redirect your anxious thoughts. It is our hope that by reading this blog, you will be able to find new and helpful ways to quiet your anxiety and maintain a healthy mental state.
Smells have always been known to have an effect on the brain. No matter where you are, you may be able to smell something that forced your brain to recall a memory or a feeling associated with a memory. Because of this, smell is a valuable tool in order to calm the brain. For one, there are certain smells naturally associated with comfort and tranquility: lavender and cocoa butter. That’s right. There is a reason so many soaps and shampoos adopt these scents!
But, how does it work? Well, your brain is a series of complex parts that are all responsible for different tasks. When you smell something, say, a rose, you sniff the flower and the scent is transferred to the olfactory bulb in your brain. This neural structure is directly responsible for olfaction, or your sense of smell. This olfactory information is taken from the olfactory bulb and then processed to in the amygdala and the hippocampus. In the hippocampus is where you are able to interpret emotions, memories, and learning. Because these two pieces of your brain work so closely together, your brain is affected by your olfactory capabilities. That is why, if you are more attracted to certain smells, it is best to use them for when you are stressed. For example, if you like the smell of roses, it is best to have a bottle of rose-scented lotion nearby when you are stressed.
Having lotion is a good idea to have for more reasons that one. As stated, scent can play a huge role in mood and emotion. However, lotion is also a valuable anxiety-reducing resource because of its physical application. When you are stressed out, rubbing and massaging your hands is a great way to relax. When you are stressed out, your hand muscles can seize up, making you uncomfortable. Instead, when you are stressed out, working out the tense muscles with a bit of location will help relax not only your hands, but your whole body.
Taking deep, spaced out breaths is a great way to calm down. When you are stress out, your body can go into a tense, panicked state. When this occurs, your heart rate will increase, your breathing will quicken, and your muscles will constrict. This is due to your bodies nature fight or flight mode. When you are frightened or stressed, your body will naturally fall into this mode and make it difficult to think logically and clearly. Breathing will help balance your heart rate and slow your breathing. When you are panicked, despite the fast-paced breaths you take, your body isn’t getting the oxygen it needs. This is why sometimes if you are panicked enough you can get dizzy or faint. Taking deep breaths that are timed out will help reintroduce large amounts of oxygen into your lungs and calm your heart rate.
Mediation is also a great method for calming your body and mind. In mediation classes, you will learn how to manipulate your brain into thinking calming thoughts, learn breathing techniques, and practice mental health enhancing exercises. When you are stressed, sometimes all you need is someone to coach you on how to find solutions to our anxiety. At Healing Angles, we can teach you the power of meditation healing. Contact us today.