EASE ANXIETY right now
Just 15 minutes is all it takes to banish worry and anxiety
FIND TIME TO MEDITATE ‘Fifteen minutes is a good amount of time to meditate and will give significant benefit if you can make it a daily habit,’ says meditation teacher Rory Kinsella.
‘By closing our eyes and directing awareness away from our thoughts and our senses, we stop taking in information.’
Rory advises setting up a regular time to meditate, so it becomes a habit.
‘If the only spare time you have is sitting in the car for 15 minutes before picking the kids up from school, then that’s as good a time as any,’ he says.
WRITE IT DOWN According to executive coach Danielle Marchant, who has just authored the book Pause: How To Press Pause Before Life Does It To You (Hachette, $19.99), you should get a piece of blank paper
and at the top, write: ‘I’m scared of...’
‘Now write out your worries, your fears, your concerns. Write freely, no matter how silly or petty or crazy those fears may be,’ she writes. ‘Acknowledging your fear, looking it in the eye, is the first step toward handling it.’
FEEL THE FEAR AND DO IT ANYWAY Scared of making that speech, or perhaps stepping onto a crowded train? Research from the University of California found that when people with anxiety expose themselves to whatever is triggering it, it actually helps them cope better. By showing yourself the worst didn’t happen, it’s empowering and will reduce the fear you experience.
TURN UP THE FEELGOOD PLAYLIST Make yourself a 15-minute feelgood playlist. Research shows that listening to music can lower blood pressure, heart rate and anxiety. Even better if you can sing along or dance – it will take your mind off whatever worries you might have.
DOWNLOAD AN APP Fill up your smartphone with these apps for instant calm. ‘For those wanting to dip their toe into meditation, there are some good apps. 1 Giant Mind, Insight Timer and Headspace all offer guided meditations for beginners,’ says Rory. Another great app is Selfhelp for Anxiety Management, where you can build a personal toolkit in the app to help your anxiety levels and triggers.