4 Easy Ways to Reduce Anxiety and Depression

Written by Dr. Veena Madhankumar and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team

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Emotional illnesses, such as anxiety and depression, can be challenging to understand. It affects almost everyone once in their lifetime. It can be depression or anxiety after giving birth, panic attacks due to work pressure, or grief from a spouse’s loss. Severe mood swings, unreasonable fear, and suicidal thoughts are some of the most dangerous symptoms of such mental disorders. While medicines are available to help fight these symptoms, research shows that following some simple practices, along with medication and other therapies, combat anxiety and depression better and have long-term effects.

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The following are some simple ways that will help relieve depression and anxiety.

1) Make a Positive List

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Those who are depressed often dislike their appearance, resent whatever they do, and feel that they are not good at anything. They have persistent feelings of guilt, inadequacy, and low self-esteem. This self-hate can be dealt with by maintaining a list with all positive things about yourself, which you should keep updating when you do something that you are proud of or when someone says something nice about you. This list can be taped to the fridge or computer, or you can keep it in your pocket so that when you are feeling sad and depressed, you can read this list of positivity. This will instantly improve your mood.

2) Set Goals

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People who are stressed and anxious lack motivation. The lack of energy due to mental illness can last for months and affect your progress at work. Setting a long-term goal is the best way to fight this inertia. You might not feel like taking up a huge responsibility at work when you have a mental illness. It might also seem to be the wrong thing to do, but in reality, pursuing a goal will keep you occupied and motivated to look forward to the future. The goal must be something you have always been passionate about or the things you always wanted to do all your life. It can be a new hobby, pursuing a career, or getting healthy. Avoid doing things that will stress you out more.

3) Identify the Triggers

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There is always some factor that triggers the feeling of anxiety and depression. These triggers can be situations, words, emotions, etc., which makes the person experience the full extent of their mental health problem. Once you can recognize what is triggering your symptoms, you will be better prepared to handle the situation in the future, or you might even be able to avoid it. During some professional therapies, the doctor will ask you to expose yourself to stressful situations to find a way to tackle them effectively. But this should never be done without the help of a professional.

4) Meditate

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Meditation is one of the best ways to cope with negative emotions. Try to focus and eliminate the negative stream of thoughts that crowd your mind and cause stress. This will help achieve a deep state of relaxation and tranquility. The best time to meditate is the time of the day when you are the most stressed. If you are stressed after a long day at work, come home, relax, and meditate for a few minutes. Meditation right before bed will relax you and prepare you for a good night’s sleep.

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