Stress, tension, anxiety – all of these can get your mind spinning with worrying about ‘what if?’ and prevent you from feeling rested and at peace.
Being able to calm these feelings and stop worrying will enable you to enjoy life in a new and more meaningful way.
While there are numerous ways to calm your overactive mind, you can begin with these 10:
1. Eliminate Clutter and Get Organized
When you look around your house are your counters full of things? Is there a stack, or stacks, of paper on the dining room table? What about the coffee table or top of the entertainment center? If your environment is messy it can be a distraction for your mind and cause anxiety. Take a day, or at least a few hours, and remove the clutter, organize it, and put away that which you actually use and need. You can give away some things to your local charity or you can throw away the outdated and unusable things. If a day is too much, take an hour and focus on just one area – the kitchen countertops, the dining room table, the overflowing shelves in a bedroom.
2. Turn Off the Television
Many people get in the habit of having the television on for white noise or background noise. What they don’t realize is that any information you are exposed to affects your subconscious. So, while you may say that you’re not a news junkie or that you don’t watch silly reality shows, your subconscious mind is fully aware of all the bad things happening in the world and the negative things people do to each other. If you must have white noise or background noise, play music.
There is evidence that meditation can help you get and stay calm and ultimately help you to achieve inner peace. There are several types of meditation that range from simple walking to deep mental and spiritual practices. Many types of meditation can be practiced anywhere, with some that enable you to meditate in just a few spare moments, just enough time to calm the thoughts and clear the mind. No matter what type you choose to practice, you will discover the calming benefits.
4. Change What You Eat
Soda, sugar, and processed foods all contribute to increasing tension and stress in the body. Replace these foods with fruits, vegetables, water, and non-processed meats and you will quickly feel a difference in your body that will translate to reduced stress and anxiety and a calming of the mind. Reducing caffeine intake can also be very helpful in reducing tension and stress.
5. Exercise On Purpose
A healthy body leads and supports a healthy mind. Physical activity keeps the body functioning correctly, gets the blood flowing, and contributes to a healthy brain. Adding physical activity to your daily routine will help you to relax by releasing stress and tension. The activity doesn’t need to be strenuous. Yoga, Pilates, walking, bicycling and others can do just as much for the body as intense workouts at a fitness center.
6. Entertainment and Recreation
Have some fun. Play games with friends. Go see a comedy at the movies. Attend a local school’s carnival or the town festival. Laughter is great medicine and it can be free.
7. Journal Every Evening
A great way to calm the mind is to journal about your day. Journaling at the end of the day can serve as a ‘brain dump’. Writing allows you to get rid of the clutter in your mind that is causing stress and anxiety. And, with practice, you’ll begin to see how you can journal your way to solutions about issues you’ve been worrying over. You get to stop the worry and feel calmer.
8. Get In Touch With Nature
Nature has a calming effect that helps you to relax. Go for a walk in the woods, near a lake, on the beach. If there are parks or conservatories in your area, make use of them. This will help you to relax and to let go of things you’ve been worrying over.
9. One Thing At A Time
Multi-tasking is a dangerous myth. It’s much more stressful to stop and start tasks throughout the day than it is to simply finish a task and then move on to the next. More gets done, too. Make the decision to do only one thing at a time, to not move on to the next until the task in front of you is finished. You’ll soon feel the results of a mind that is clear and focused and calm.
10. Think Through The Anxiety
Often the anxiety we experience is a result of not understanding what is actually happening. Worrying and fretting over things we have no control over isn’t helpful, and yet we do it. We do it because we don’t take the time to think things through. Ask yourself these questions to get started on thinking it through:
What can you do about the situation?
What is your part in the problem?
Where is the evidence that this is bad?
How important is it?
Is your involvement necessary?
Are more resources needed?
Your answers will determine your next actions. And action is a known cure for an overactive mind.