Try These Simple Practices to Prevent Anxiety Attacks

If you deal with anxiety attacks, you know how distressing and stressful they can be.

Guest Post by: Emma Grace Brown, Image via Rawpixel

Anxiety is your body’s way of responding to stressful situations, and a healthy amount of it can provide you with extra energy and focus on overcoming challenges.

But when your anxiety reaches unhealthy levels, and it begins to disrupt your life, it’s time to figure out how to bring it under control.

Fortunately, there are many practical methods to keep anxiety at bay and reduce stress. From therapy self-study at home workbooks to diet and exercise, try these tips from Stacy Reuille-Dupont to prevent future anxiety attacks:

Change Jobs         

Sometimes anxiety is rooted in or triggered by a career path that no longer fits your life. Whether you have changed, the job has changed, or a good thing just needs to come to an end, sometimes you need to move on. Evaluate your career path to determine if it still accommodates you. If not, be bold and make the change to find something more enjoyable. 

If you find your current career is not the right fit and is triggering anxiety, then consider going to school and getting on track for a career that will suit you better. Online schooling is more accessible and flexible than ever in the digital age. While still working your current job (keeping a steady paycheck) and managing your responsibilities, you can attend online courses. 

If you already have your bachelor’s degree, you can go back to earn a master’s in fields like education, business, or criminal justice. If you don’t have your bachelor’s degree yet, you could achieve one in anything from health care to technology.

Try Breathing Exercises

Anxiety can cause every muscle in your body to tense up. It also impacts every organ, your mood, and your energy levels. Breathing exercises are proven to lessen not only the symptoms associated with anxiety but also to alleviate or altogether eliminate anxiety attacks. 

Try different breathing exercises until you find one you like (e.g., belly breathing, box breathing, alternating nasal and mouth breathing, 4-7-8 breathing, etc.). And use the techniques whenever anxiety washes over you.

Steer Clear of Substances

While things like breathing exercises and life changes can improve anxiety, triggers make it worse. Anything that alters your brain can exacerbate anxiety. Whether we are talking sugar, alcohol, caffeine, or cigarettes. Not all bodies are the same, so not everything will affect you. Steer clear of anything you notice that worsens your anxiety and find healthy alternatives when possible.

Eat Well and Exercise     

Your body and your mind are intrinsically intertwined. When you take care of your physical health, you will naturally see improvements in your mental and emotional health. For some people, their anxiety can be kept entirely at bay by maintaining a good diet and exercise routine. For others, it can help manage or lessen the impact of anxiety. 

Eat healthy, balanced meals consisting of proteins, fruits, vegetables, and seeds. And try to move your body every day and make it a fitness routine that brings you joy. You may have to try a few different exercises until you find the right fit. 

Lean on Others

Community is essential to human nature. Resist the urge to battle the mountain of anxiety alone. Include your friends, family, and professionals like Stacy Reuille-Dupont in your journey towards overcoming this obstacle. Reach out when you need support. You’re not alone.

When anxiety controls significant portions of your life, it’s time to make some changes. Consider the tips above to keep your anxiety levels within a healthy range and prevent future attacks.

You might be surprised by how a simple modification to your daily routine can make such a lasting impact on your overall health and wellbeing!

Would you like to read more helpful content or learn about my psychology, addiction counseling, and personal training services? Visit StacyReuille.com to find out how to work with Stacy today!

Eat Well, Feel Well

Over the last few years I have been diving deep into the connections between mental health and physical health. As I have been working with mental health clients using physical exercise some surprising interventions have made the most impact. One that continues to be a solid help is eating a balanced diet at regular intervals.  Here are some reasons to care and tips to track your own moods as they relate to your food choices.


Easy Budget Meals Your Family Will Love

When we look at the links between blood sugar and mood we see some themes. When one doesn’t eat for long periods of time irritability, depression, sadness, a general feeling of malaise are common. My clients articulate this as “blah” and it makes sense given that feeling low energy often gets tagged as depression in our culture or “what’s wrong with me because I can’t get things done”. Things just aren’t as vibrant, colorful, interesting, or exciting when you aren’t feeling well. When you don’t eat for long periods of time, you don’t feel well.

In the body the brain registers this as dangerous and a slew of chemicals is pumped from the endocrine system to accommodate this threat. Some describe feeling a “little high” or “being detached” from the world and people around them. They report using food to help them achieve these states helps them “numb out” from painful emotions. The problem becomes this behavior feeds its own cycle and often the thoughts around these somatic sensations are distorted. As noted above people label their low energy as depression, the shaky nauseous feeling as anxiety, and the lack of focus as ADHD. However, what’s really going on doesn’t need a psychotropic med it needs a balanced meal.

To begin your own exploration of how food impacts your moods tracking can be helpful. Note what time you eat, what you ate, what emotions you were feeling before and after the meal, and any physical (or lack of) sensations you had. Track for 1-2 weeks without changing anything.  This can help you see patterns in your behaviors, moods, and physical sensation. It is important to begin this process without judgment. There is no need to judge, you are doing what you are doing, just allow yourself to objectively see what it is you are doing. From this place of observation it becomes easier to determine what you would like to change and how you’ll be most successful changing it.
Here’s to happy eating and contented feelings!
Food Diary Log Example:
Date
Meal (can include calories or nutrition info if wanted)
Time eaten
Emotions Before
Emotions After

Physical Sensations

 Photo Credit: www.naimamohamed.com