Practice deep breathing. Deep belly breathing is one of the most effective ways to quickly reduce anxiety. You can do deep breathing anywhere and it only takes a few minutes to feel the effects.
- To practice deep breathing, find a quiet place and sit or lay down in a comfortable position.
- Place your hands over your stomach, just below your ribcage.
- Take in a long, slow breath as you count to five. Concentrate on pulling the air into your abdomen, rather than just into your chest.
- Then, hold the breath for a few seconds and exhale it slowly.
- Keep inhaling and exhaling slowly into your belly for about five to 10 minutes.
Try progressive muscle relaxation. Progressive muscle relaxation is also a quick way to reduce anxiety.Progressive muscle relaxation is when you tense and release the muscles in your body one at a time, moving from the tips of your toes to the top of your head.
- To practice progressive muscle relaxation, start by laying down someplace comfortable.
- Close your eyes and then tighten the muscles in your toes by curling your toes under.
- Then, release the tension in your toes and tense your feet by flexing them.
- Then, release this tension and move to your calves.
- Continue to tense and release the muscles in your body one by one until you reach your forehead.
Call a friend. Connecting with someone and expressing how you feel may also help to relieve anxiety. Try calling a friend to talk about what is on your mind. Or meet up with a friend and talk through your feelings in person.
- Avoid communicating how you feel via text or social media, try to connect with someone on the phone or face to face. Video chat is another option if you cannot leave your home or place of work.
Engage in some physical activity. Any type of physical activity can be calming. Exercise is even regarded as an effective way to treat anxiety, so if you are feeling anxious, exercise is a great option. You can do anything that you enjoy, but try to do 30 minutes of exercise every day.
- Go for a walk. Walking is probably the easiest way to get some quick physical activity. Try taking a quick walk around your neighborhood.
- Take a yoga class. Yoga provides great strengthening and stretching exercises along with deep breathing and meditation techniques that can help to reduce your anxiety.
- Dance around in your living room. You don’t even need to go outside to get some exercise. Try putting on some of your favorite music and dancing around your living room or bedroom.
Visualize a serene scene. Imagining a calming place may also help you to calm down quickly. Try imagining a favorite place, including how it looks, sounds, smells and feels. Stay in this serene space for as long as you like.
- For example, you might imagine that you are sitting in a beautiful meadow in the summer. You might notice beautiful wildflowers all around you, smell the scent of the grass and flowers, hear the sound of a gentle breeze blowing, and feel the warmth of the sun on your skin.
Distract yourself. A quick distraction can help you to feel less anxious as well. Try to force yourself to do something that will hold your attention when you are feeling anxious. After engaging in an activity for 10 to 15 minutes, your anxiety may go away on its own.
- For example, you could pick up a book and start reading, take a relaxing bubble bath, play with your cat, or organize your desk.
Use calming essential oils. Lavender has been shown to be effective at reducing anxiety in some situations, such as before taking a test.Consider wearing a lavender scented lotion or keeping a bottle of lavender essential oil nearby so that you can smell it now and then.
- Other essential oils may also provide anxiety reducing results, such as Roman chamomile, Clary sage, lemon, and Bertram