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Your Stories: Shannon On Five Things That Help Her Anxiety

Transitioning to London life hasn’t been easy. Since moving from New Zealand less than four months ago, I’ve had to ride a wave of emotions and navigate the ebbs and flows that life can throw at you. The stress and exhaustion of my overachieving mind telling me I’m never doing good enough, the unsettling feeling of living in the big city and a painful break-up have been difficult to manage. Over the last few weeks, I’ve begun to realise how important self-care can be.

Is anyone going through situations in life where they feel like they are in a lull and need some tips to help manage their anxiety? Here are five things that help me and I hope in some way they may help you too!

1. Exercise.

There’s no better way than releasing a whole bunch of endorphins, distracting your mind from negative thoughts and getting a good sweat on whilst doing it. Go for a run or take a spin class. It may be hard to find motivation at first, but it’s well worth it.

2. Yoga (or Pilates).

We must remember that our physical and mental health are connected, so even if you’re feeling anxious or down, we should be supporting our whole body wellness. This is why yoga is so good – because it targets both the body and mind.

3. Meditation or ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response).

I’ve just recently been getting into ASMR and it’s amazing! I couldn’t recommend it enough. It involves listening to sounds that calm and stimulate the mind and can sometimes be referred to as a ‘brain massage.’ It’s a great form of meditation and is proven to help with anxiety, depression stress, and insomnia. Another great app for meditation is Headspace. Whether you’ve got 3 -10 mins to spare, it’s a good way to take some time out of your busy day to relax your mind.

4. Writing.

This helps me so much with expressing and understanding my thoughts. I write down everything I’m feeling and thinking. I normally write lyrics to songs or poetry. A flip side to writing down your feelings is to write down things that you’re thankful for.

5. Music.

I don’t know what it is about music but it heals, moulds, builds and shapes me. Whether it’s listening to music or playing music – this is a good source of comfort for me. Especially listening to sad songs as they can be so relatable. I always think it’s okay to really feel out your emotions and have a good cry.

 

Try not to let the bad thoughts linger for too long if you can – I know this is easier said than done, believe me. Just like meditation, let your thoughts come and go. Take care of yourself. Distract yourself by doing things that you love and you know will fill your cup. Running a bath, lighting a candle or burning incense, reading a book, talking to your plants, turning on your salt lamp, drinking tea and eating chocolate. All alongside having support and quality time with friends and family – it really is the little things that bring me the most joy.

Shannon is a London based Digital Marketing Executive with a keen interest in mental health and wellbeing. To follow her journey, check out her Instagram page at @Shaanlivvy

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If you would like to join our blogging community and write a piece on your experiences with mental health, email elizabeth.woods@mindchwf.org.uk

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