THINGS THAT ACTUALLY HELP WITH MY ANXIETY
Generalised Anxiety Disorder and Panic Disorder. They fucking suck. Here are things that help me.
- •MedicationThis shouldn't be the first answer but it absolutely is. I would not be where I am today without an amazing doctor and some amazing pharmaceutical science. I know this isn't for everyone, but it's saved my life.
- •BreathingI get mad whenever someone recommends this when I'm having a panic attack until I practice deep breathing and, yes, it works. More effective when used before I've reached the peak of my attack.
- •CountingOr listing things like names, animals, etc. Especially useful when I'm trying to sleep. Sometimes I just count back from a thousand. Sometimes it works.
- •ColouringThe hype is real! You can get apps like Colorfy which kind of imitate the art of colouring on your choice of Apple device.
- •TVNothing I haven't seen before. Things I've seen a thousand times. The Office, Friends and The Mindy Project are my favourites. Sometimes, to sleep in spite of anxiety, I'll put them on my iPad and just listen to the familiar dialogue until I forget why I'm freaking out. It helps.
- •YouTubeEspecially unboxings, hauls and baking videos. Watching other people do things helps, I guess?
- •AppsCandy Crush, Zoombinis (!!!) and Tiny Tower: Vegas are among my faves. Enormous wastes of time but also so delightfully distracting.
- •Taking it 10 seconds at a timeAs the wise Kimmy Schmidt once said, you can do almost anything for ten seconds at a time. Then you just start over. This has helped immensely.
- •Making listsWhich is maybe why I love this app so much. Making stepladders towards my goals, to-do lists or simply lists of my favourite cinematic scores. Vaguely productive and distracting.
- •Binaural BeatsAnd other white noise tracks. You can also try Rainy Mood and the like, but these really help to "sedate" me, I guess. They're especially good for sleep, and also pain relief. You can find plenty for free on YouTube.
- •ReadingAs with TV, typically things I've already read. I can't really handle the suspense of new things when I'm already anxious. I think I've re-read THG a thousand times.
- •PetsI'm pretty sure this is scientifically proven. Pets help. It's hard not to stare at their carefree little faces and not feel a little calmer (and a lot jealous.) If you can't adopt your own, consider fostering (see my list on fostering kittens: WHY I FOSTER KITTENS AND YOU SHOULD CONSIDER DOING SO, TOO ), borrowing a friend's or volunteering at your local shelter.
- •Cardio and YogaThis combination has helped greatly with my Panic Disorder. Once I got a good schedule going and stopped dying of being out of shape, this became a vital tool to deal with my anxiety. (Such a good list btw)Suggested by @babystevens
- •stream of consciousness writing.Suggested by @tristen
- •CBT. Have you tried it?Suggested by @thatssoayesha