Due to the amount of posts I’ve made lately talking about my anxiety, I thought it was only right to do a post talking about the mini ways I’ve found of how to cope with it, mental health is different for every individual therefore, things that ease my own anxiety won’t necessarily ease yours and vice versa, but I thought it may be helpful to share them anyway. Like I said, these are personal ways that help me therefore they’re not your average ‘do breathing exercise’ suggestions (though that also does help).
listening to country music
Now, this may sound odd, but recently I started actually paying attention to country music. A lot of people hate it and it’s deemed uncool to like it and there’s a lot of stereotypes so therefore I guess I just never really payed attention to it, I liked old country Taylor Swift and a bit of Hunter Hayes, but that was all. After I started exploring it properly I realised that country music isn’t some farmer sitting on a bale of hay playing the banjo, it’s actually really beautiful. It makes me feel very calm because (I’m going to be honest here) the subject matter is very calming and the songs cover things in a way that allow me to enjoy it rather than relate to my own emotions and get upset about it…does that make sense? So if there’s a country song about heartbreak, I find I’m able to listen to it because I’m concentrating on how beautiful, calming and nice it sounds rather than the fact it’s about a breakup. It all just feels very safe, is the word I’m looking for. It makes me feel safe and I can just close my eyes and let my mind drift away. (Let me know if you want a country playlist?)
going for a drive
I’ve spoken about this before in my posts but things like going for a drive or going for a walk really help my anxiety. I made a post a couple of weeks ago where I spoke about how I could feel this wave of anxiety coming over me and I thought nope, I’m not going to sit here feeling trapped and allow it to consume me. I find driving very calming and so putting some music on (this ties in with the above point but I normally listen to country / old Taylor Swift on these drives) just allows me to focus my mind on something else. I can’t use or check my phone because obviously, I’m driving, and I can’t really think about anything long enough to let it overwhelm me because I’m also concentrating on the road (and where I’m going because obviously, these drives have no set destination)- let me know if you want an anxiety playlist!
watching children’s programmes
I feel like this point is going to sound really weird, but anxiety makes me feel like a child, basically. I’m anxious and scared and sad and I just want to wrap myself up in blankets and for someone to tell me it’s all going to be okay. I don’t have that luxury as I pretty much face this whole thing on my own so the next best thing for me is to wrap myself up and watch kid’s programmes on TV. I find it so calming because again, it diverts my attention away from anywhere else and kid’s programmes are obviously just that – for kids. Nothing bad happens in them, there’s no heartbreak or death (and if there is it’s like, an evil villain in scooby doo so I can handle it) it’s all just safe. I know I can watch it and it’s not going to hurt me or make me feel worse. Like I said, this point may sound weird – a 20 year old watching children’s TV programmes but it honestly does help me and make me feel okay. I don’t do it often but sometimes I just need to.
watching Rhiannon Ashlee vlogs
Speaking of watching things, Youtube isn’t always my best friend when it comes to anxiety (unless I’m watching anxiety related videos). I can watch Youtube when I’m feeling anxious, but it doesn’t really do anything for me, however, there is one channel that I’ve found myself going back to over and over again lately, and that’s Rhiannon Ashlee’s vlog channel. I’ve been subscribed to Rhiannon’s main & vlog channel for literally years now and have always really enjoyed her content, but lately I’ve been none stop watching her vlogs to help with my anxiety – I never really made the connection before (I just found myself constantly watching them and thought…why have I become so obsessed all of a sudden?) but then I realised that I was watching them because they made me feel safe and calm. Rhiannon’s vlogs are so lovely, so normal and so calming to watch, nothing extravagant or crazy, no clickbait, nothing loud and in your face, just really nice to watch and I love them so much. So far she’s the only person I’ve found on Youtube that makes me feel like this, but I’m hoping to find more. Let me know if you have any recommendations!
reading a book
Now, this doesn’t always work for me but I’m going to include it anyway. When I’m feeling anxious I find it extremely hard to concentrate, I’m very easily distracted and therefore reading a book isn’t always the best solution in these cases because as I said, I can’t concentrate for very long. However, if it’s a book that I can easily get lost in – problem solved. Reading is a great way to pass time and focus on something other than what’s going on inside your mind, if I know I’ll be able to get lost in the story then I’ll pick up a book to distract myself.
playing a game
Again, may sound weird but with anxiety I need distractions. Sometimes I’ll put on some music to help and then play a game at the same time, literally some form of word puzzle or brain training (if I want to play a game on my phone I’ll turn airplane mode on so I can’t get distracted). Again, this passes time and allows me to focus on something other than what’s going on inside my mind.
You may have noticed a word I’ve used a lot throughout this post, and that’s safe. That’s what anxiety (solvers?) are for me, things that make me feel safe because when I get anxious, I feel very vulnerable and scared, so I instantly need things that are going to take away from that.
If you have any other anxiety tips please feel free to share them, you never know who they could benefit. Also let me know if you’d like me to make an anxiety playlist / country playlist ♡
All my love,