Mindfulness For Stress, Anxiety And Depression
Did you ever feel slight shaking of your hands before stepping on the stage to perform? Or sweating of your palms before you walk in for an important interview? Well if you did, it’s completely normal. It is our body’s natural reaction to stressful situations. These symptoms are temporary and usually don’t last long.
However, prolonged feeling of anxiousness can lead to anxiety disorders of various types. Depression is the persistent feeling of sadness and tiredness. People with depression lose interest in everything and find simple tasks like getting out of bed in the morning difficult. Unfortunately, depression and anxiety have become pretty common in our generation. Fighting with these feelings are more stressful than not.
When To Seek Professional Help?
Anxiety can interfere in your day to day activities and make simple tasks feel strenuous. People suffering from anxiety are often forgetful and face trouble concentrating. Their minds are diseased with dreadful thoughts and they usually tend to avoid situations rather than dealing with it. Similarly, people with depression lose interest and generally procrastinate things. You should seek professional help if you find simple day to day tasks challenging, feel detached from reality or have the following symptoms- shaking/sweating of hands, trouble falling or staying asleep, dizziness, pounding heart, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, feeling hopeless or suicidal etc.
How Can You Help Yourself?
Despite from taking professional help, you can do so many things to manage your stress and anxiety. Mindfulness is a great tool to alleviate stress from your body and placate your hyperactive mind. The most difficult task these days is to pitch in time for exercise in our already over loaded schedule. Thankfully, practicing mindfulness doesn’t require you to do so. It can literally be practiced anywhere doing anything no matter how effortless the task seem. Mindfulness is a meticulous practice showing very careful and precise attention to your body and surroundings. Research has proven mindfulness practice to be beneficial for stress reduction and depression.
Proactive approach- Mindfulness makes us more self-aware and in more alignment with our thoughts and feelings. Usually when our body and mind are anxiously reacting to stress stimulus, we push our problems in the back of our mind. Not dealing with them only add more stress to an already anxiety ridden mind. Soon we find ourselves anxious over our anxiety, depressed about depression and stressed about being in stress. Mindfulness helps us adapt a proactive approach in tackling our problems. It rids our mind of unnecessary self-deprecating thoughts and opens our mind to newer possibilities. It is like a fog is suddenly lifted and we are watching the world through a new colorful lens.
Root of cause- Being aware of our thoughts helps us perceive the root cause from where our anxiety is stemming. Sometimes it is the inability to deal under pressure or specific timeline, it might be your over demanding work, or multi- managing several things at a time. Whatever it is, half of the problem is already solved when the problem is identified.
Calming effects- Mindful breathing and performing a body scan are commonly practiced mindful techniques. They have relaxing effects on our body and mind. It lowers the blood pressure and release serotonin in brain leaving the sense of happiness. Having a mindful meal at the end of a stressful day is a great way to distress your body and mind. Mindful yoga in the mornings can boost you with positive energy to deal with your day ahead with positivity.
Practicing mindfulness in simple activities can be easily managed on your own at home. In some cases, guided mindfulness is suggested to diagnose the source of problems of complex nature. Although mindfulness is a very simple technique, some of us may find it difficult to practice. In that case, we suggest you find a mindfulness instructor and follow a more guided approach. It is important to choose an instructor with proper credentials and appropriate certifications. Find an instructor you feel congenial with and talk to them openly about your issues.