My Top Two Bulletproof Tools to Help Relieve Stress and Anxiety

Over the past few years since college has begun, I've noticeably become a very stressed out and anxious person. College, right? Well I started worrying about everything and little things, which also results in loads of stress and daily anxiety. At some point or another, these feelings come and go for most if not all people, but I've recently been learning more and more ways to properly handle these issues when they arise or at least try to reduce/prevent them, so I thought I would share a few of my own personal tips for those who may have this in common!

A couple weeks ago I started to use the meditation app called Headspace, which is exactly what I needed. I got to a build-up point where my mind was constantly running 1000mph and it was hard for me to focus on the important things happening in the present because my thoughts were dwelling on scenarios that happened years, months, days, and hours ago. It wasn't good for my health at all, I was constantly a stress ball, and high levels of stress can take a huge negative toll on your overall health and wellbeing - I felt that toll head on, so I got to the point where I realized I had to make positive changes and fast. 

I read a little about meditation here and there so I downloaded Headspace in the app store and gave it a shot. After only a few days, I could feel my mind calming down. I wouldn't get as anxious and overwhelmed walking to class when I had nothing to do but think. I started to practice being in the present and being grateful, expressing more gratitude, even if just within my thoughts. The changes within myself were almost immediate and more apparent than I expected, this being only after a few inconsistent days. Now I use the app every morning because it makes me feel good and I can feel progress. My head isn't as foggy (minus the early mornings when I'm rushing to class after only six hours of sleep), and for the most part I've even been sleeping better. I've still got a ways to go, but I'm very proud in my progress and I can only feel it increasing.

The second method that I've always taken to whenever I feel stressed and anxious is reading. I love reading, I can read multiple books at once and be totally content. Even when I have a long list of selections to get through, I'm always shopping for more great books to read for later. Reading definitely calms me and puts my subconscious to rest. I can get into a good book and not move for hours. Reading can be tough, first you want to find something that suits your taste which you can really get into, then you have to find the time to actually pick the book up. Well another thing I've been practicing recently is to not make excuses. There is always going to be a reason not to do something… You're too tired, too busy, it takes too much effort, when really the only thing that's preventing you from picking up that dusty book are excuses, excuses, excuses. Someone can say they don't have time to do something yet then find themselves binge watching Netflix… I'll be the first to admit that I am often that person, but once you break out of that shell and JUST DO IT, (whatever it may be, but in this case reading), you will find that it feels amazing!

Practicing mindfulness and clearing your head daily can result in an increase in happiness, health, and well-being to make room for all of the positive things that life has to offer, so do what you need to take care of your mind and body, whatever that may be!

Oh and I have plenty of great reading recommendations if anyone needs any!

Enjoy :)

x Michaela