Today, about 40 million adults in the U.S. suffer from some sort of anxiety disorder. With an average onset age of 31 years old, generalized anxiety disorders affect twice as many women as men, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Having any kind of anxiety is a challenge in itself, but it can get even more complicated when anxiety episodes happen in the workplace. If you’re feeling anxious at work, here are a few things you can do to make yourself feel better without ever leaving your desk.
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Avoid Highly Caffeinated Drinks Like Coffee.
Caffeine is the most widely used mood-altering drug in the world, according to WebMD. Eighty percent of Americans drink coffee regularly.
Too much caffeine can definitely instigate physical symptoms that feel just like your anxiety. If you must drink caffeine, try sipping on glass of green tea instead. It tastes delicious and has lower amounts of caffeine than coffee.
Keep a Heat Source at Your Desk.
For many, the first sign of impending anxiety attack is the onset of cold chills, similar to the same cold chills you get with the flu. Anxiety spurs your body into fight-or-flight mode, which can direct most of the blood flow to different parts of your body. By keeping a small heat source at your desk like a personal heater, you can help balance the chills and eventually get to a place where you feel normal again. The goal is to stop the symptoms before they really start.
Listen to a Song You Know, on Repeat.
Anxiety is different for everyone, and there is no one-trick solution for curing it. But if you find yourself with circling negative thoughts, try this trick out. In my experience, the only thing that takes up more brain space than my own anxiety is when I can’t get a song out of my head. So the next time you’re feeling anxious at your desk, hit play on a song you know by heart and enjoy listening to. Play this on repeat for as long as it takes for you to get lost in a task. Before long, you find yourself feeling better and able to get something done.
Remember to Breathe.
It seems really obvious, but breathing techniques can soothe and prevent many of the negative symptoms of your anxiety attack. One such technique, called the Wiley’s Anger Management Breath, requires you to breathe in through your nose for one second, and out for one second, then in again for two seconds, and out for two seconds. Continue this trend until you get to 10 seconds. By this point, people typically start feeling calmer and more relaxed.
Browse r/Aww for All the Positive Feels
When you can’t get up, or you are feeling too anxious to walk around, the internet has your back. This community of 8,527,732 subscribers has enough cute to go around. Visit r/Aww when you’re in need of some cute puppies, adorable kittens, baby goats, and heartwarming images in general. Bringing some positive energy into your day can go a long way and can help distract you from whatever is causing your anxiety to bubble over.
Tell Us What You Think!
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