5 Ways to Reduce Anxiety (in a matter on minutes)


Many of us have been struck by anxiety at some point in our lives. You might feel a heightened sense of anxiety before a job interview or a difficult conversation or when you’re going through a rough patch in life or work. For some people, the anxiety is more long-term and manifests as an anxiety disorder.

Despite the fact that so many of us are dealing with stress and anxiety, many people don't have go-to strategies for coping with the effects of anxiety and stress. Here are 5 ways to reduce anxiety, in a matter of minutes. 


333 Grounding Technique

Name three things you see

When feelings of anxiety strike, pause, breathe, look at your surroundings, and name three things you can see. It can be anything; a cat, a lamp, your mug, a family photo—whatever catches your eye.

Name three sounds you hear

Next, listen to your surroundings and name three things you hear. It doesn’t matter what they are; traffic, water running, your coworker’s keys clacking, people talking, or your own breath.

Move three parts of your body

Finally, pick three parts of your body and move them one by one. You could shake your head, shrug your shoulders, and roll your wrists. If you want to be more incognito, you could smile, take a deep breath and feel your chest rise and fall, and tap your foot.

One of the best things about the 333 rule is that it can be done anywhere and anytime. You can even do it right in front of someone else and they wouldn’t even realize.


Positive Affirmations

Positive affirmations are positive, realistic, concise, self-help statements that reflect our personal values and can move us into a more positive mental state.

Here are a few you could try:

  • I have anxious thoughts, but I also have the power to challenge and change them.
  • It makes sense that I feel uncomfortable, but it is temporary. 
  • I am safe. This is juts anxiety.
  • I trust myself to navigate difficult or stressful situations.
  • Thank you, anxiety, for trying to protect me, but I’m up for this challenge today.


Name it!

When we let anxiety run its course in the moment without fighting it, ironically, that makes it less. On the other hand, fighting anxiety is what typically triggers a panic attack.

If your only strategy is to distract yourself from your anxiety or to avoid things that cause it, you’ll always be afraid of it. It’s always going to be the bully in the schoolyard because you’ve never learned to deal with it. So call anxiety out! Call it what it is. Identify how its making you feel and let it ebb and flow right on by.

Get Lost in the Music

start with three of your favorite songs right now. Then add three more songs you liked last year, or back in college or during high school or as a kid. Keep going as long as you wish, or until you have a collection that feels complete. 

Music relaxes people, It’s as simple as that. And when the memories and feelings elicited by certain songs are very happy, they completely capture your attention. The mind cannot focus on two different things at once. So, change the channel and get yourself off the worry station.


Work it out 

When you’re anxious, it can sometimes be too hard to perform a technique like deep breathing, because your adrenaline makes it difficult for you to concentrate. It’s important to try and ‘release’ the anxiety you’re feeling. These activities can calm your brain and body, helping you to focus and think rationally. 

Try doing something that rids your body of adrenaline:

  • Chores that need a lot of energy to complete
  • High intensity exercise
  • Dancing around the house to loud music
  • Any aerobic exercise
  • Go outside and get some fresh air


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