Recently, my anxiety has been a *teeny bit* all over the place. Since I know a lot of people get anxious (to varying degrees) on a regular basis, I thought I’d share some of my favourite anxiety-busting activities for those days when it really feels overwhelming. Hopefully there’ll be something new for you to try 🙂
In my recent favourites blog post, I wrote a bit about this. But since I’m enjoying it so much and it’s helping with my anxiety, I thought I’d re-share it. Basically, I have a gorgeous colouring book of Edinburgh which I’ve been slowly working my way through. I definitely recommend getting one that is more for adults and of a place that means something to you. Since I have so many happy memories in Edinburgh, the act of colouring the city in is both therapeutic and nostalgic which has such a calming effect on me.
comfort films or tv shows
When I was younger, I was obsessed with the film Spirit, Stallion of the Cimarron. No judgement please. I loved horses (and still do) and so it was one of my absolute favourites as a horse-obsessed pre-teen. I recently discovered that there’s a series loosely based on/ inspired by the animated film, and so at the ripe old age of 20 I have been watching it and reliving my childhood horse-girl dreams. Whilst technically it’s not re-watching, it does help bring my mind back to simpler times and as a result grounds my anxiety.
For the ultimate double-whammy, anxiety-busting effect, I colour in while watching this series. It’s not for everyone but I love it because I feel like a child again without a care in the world.
a walk and podcast
I probably sound like a broken record at this point, but a walk and a podcast really are sacred to me. It’s not ground-breaking, but the fresh air and nature combined with the voices of of my favourite podcasters really helps to soothe me. Plus, depending on the podcast I’m listening to, it can give me perspective on my own anxiety and further help to ease it.
sweating it out
Sometimes, a walk might not be enough and a run or bike session can be just the thing to bust my anxiety. You have to be really in tune with your body when you’re running or cycling, even more so than when walking (in my opinion), and coupled with the repetitive act of placing one foot in front of the other or pedalling your legs, it can really help keep the anxiety at bay. The endorphins released after a good sweat also give you an amazing high that can sometimes give you that little boost you need to get out of your rut.
Journalling – with prompts
When I’m feeling particularly anxious, journalling with prompts can be a lifesaver. I used to just use the stream of consciousness journalling method, but when the anxiety levels are high my mind is too jumbled to do that. Which is where prompts come into place. They basically help to structure/ direct your thoughts and writing process, leading to self-discovery and an exploration of where the anxiety is coming from. If you just search up “journal prompts for anxiety” on google, you’ll be spoiled for choice.
And finally, talking. The age-old cliché, right? Often, I prefer to deal with my anxiety by myself, but occasionally talking to a close friend is exactly what I need to get out of my head. Then, when you’re alone again, it can feel that bit more manageable and allow you to get through the episode. You don’t even have to talk specifically about your anxiety for it to benefit you. Just a catch-up and a good old laugh can be the best therapy.
I hope this post was helpful and please know that you’re not alone in this. Have faith in yourself and know that it will pass.