Proven techniques, strategies and lifestyle hacks to reduce or even stop anxiety and panic attacks! When traditional anxiety therapy and anti-anxiety medication didn't help, Mel Bonthuys researched and developed her own proven methods to fight anxiety.
I never really thought I'd ever be a person who would write an article on Time Management strategies, however here I am doing just that!
As a person who grew up being quite messy and dysfunctional, my opinions were drastically changed when I was diagnosed with anxiety and panic disorder back in 2009.
As part of my recovery plan, I began to see how proper time management, structure and routine was crucial to keeping my mind stable and anxious free, and now I am such a fan that it has become one of my most favoured ways to reduce not only anxiety, but just general every day stress!
Here are four brilliant Time Management methods to reduce anxiety and stress:
A Morning and Evening Routine
Mornings are usually chaotic for everyone, but a well structured Morning Routine can enable you to not only get things done such as getting kids ready for school and getting yourself ready for work, but being able to have enough time to do everything in, and even scheduling a few minutes for yourself to either practice some self care, and eat a good breakfast. The key to not feeling stressed out in the morning, is all down to two simple things: timing and a good night's sleep. By following a good evening routine the night before, and setting out time slots for yourself to get everything done in the morning, even if it means getting up a bit earlier are key!
Evening Routines work the same as a Morning Routine, but instead of setting us up for the day, your evening routine needs to unwind you and set you up for a good night's sleep. Therefore after doing the typical things that need to be done in the evening (whatever that may be for you) you should be focusing on doing things to induce sleep. As mentioned before, a good evening routine makes for a good night's rest, which in turn can make or break your morning routine. To watch my morning and evening routine videos, click here.
The Pro and Con List
This is an exceptionally useful method to use if you are faced with a situation, and don't know which is right for you. It can be helpful to draw up a Pro's and Con's List about that specific situation. For example, say you have an opportunity to move to a new town, but you are not sure whether it would be the right move or not. Simply take a sheet of paper, draw a line down the middle, and on one side, write all the pro's about moving to the new town, and on the other side, write all the cons. Seeing positives and negatives in black and white will help your mind process each pro and con, and make everything so much clearer so you can make a good decision.
The Fork in the Road
The Fork in the Road method is quite similar to the Pro and Con List with regards to helping you make a decision, however, it's methodology is a bit different. The Fork in the Road, like the Pro and Con List can be used to help you decide which path of a situation you should take. However, it can also be used for when you have two situations and don't know which road to take. When doing the Fork in the Road method, you'll want to turn your sheet of paper into a landscape position, then draw a two circles at the top, one in the middle of the left hand side, and then one in the middle of the right hand side. Then almost like a spider diagram, you'll list the pros and cons of taking each route. For this method, you can also take things a bit further by brainstorming ideas for each route, should one of them not work out as planned.
Block Schedule Method
I was introduced to this method on YouTube, from a lady called Jordan Page, and it's made such a remarkable difference in my life. The Block Schedule Method or System, allows you to dedicate time blocks or slots for your whole day, to allow for efficient and easier management throughout your day. The Block Schedule Method works brilliantly alongside a Morning and Evening Routine. Before I explain further, The one thing I must mention with doing something like the Block Schedule Method, and this is especially for anxiety sufferers or people who tend to stress easily, and that is... Planning out your whole day doesn't always go according to plan! We all have lives, and sometimes stuff happens, perhaps we need to go somewhere at a specific time or maybe you were not feeling well on a particular day - life happens, and sometimes we will not be able to fully stick to our schedules, and that is okay! To utilize the Block Schedule Method, and taking into account that every single person's will be different, you first need to allocate time blocks for yourself, and write a heading for each one, then underneath each heading, you are going to sub heading or clearly mark what you need to do in that specific time slot.
So an example would be: 6 - 9am - Morning Routine: Get kids up, make breakfast, eat breakfast, take kids to school 9 - 11am - Me Time: Meditate, Shower and Get Ready 11 - 1pm - Errands - Grocery Shopping, Appointments
What you could do to take it even further, is have a diary on top of your block schedule, and write in your diary any specifics, such as who do you need to call or email, or what do you need to buy at the supermarket? I actually do this as well, and I even sometimes meal plan in my diary, so a pocket size diary is just not going to cut it. I like this diary here, because it has a page dedicated to each day, and this is the one I use. For my American readers, here is a similar one.
To watch my in depth video on the block schedule method, click here.
The above four examples are specific time management techniques that I use, and they have really helped me when I need them to, however like I said earlier, time management techniques are there to help make life easier, and they are not going to work if you are stressed or beating yourself up because you don't always follow it to the minute. That will not help you, and is completely defeating the object. You don't have to always stick to it, especially on weekends, where we should all be relaxing more and spending time with our families. In fact, apart from doing my morning routine loosely on the weekends, I don't stick to the method at all. It is only for weekdays! So use one or all of these to help make your life easier and get more done, and if you fall off the time tracker sometimes - honestly who cares?
Proper management of time has always been an issue for me, and even though I have a diary, I still struggled to organise all the things that I want to do in my day.
One thing that I am a big sucker for doing, is spending too long on one task, working through lunch and then not having time to do any of the other things that need to be done.
This is one of the reasons why the block schedule method works so well for me.
How does it work?
The Block Schedule Method works by dividing your day into blocks or slots, and for each block or slot, a certain amount of time is allocated. Within those slots, a generalised theme is chosen, which can then give room to take these themes even further by dedicating tasks underneath them.
Below is a snippet from my own Block Schedule for my 2-3:30pm time slot and then for my 3:30-4:30 time slot.
Say for example you have children that you need to get up for school, you may wake up at 6am, and you know that after you’ve taken the children to school, you’re usually home by 8:30, so your first time block might be from 6-8:30am which you might title your “get children up and ready” slot.
Then from 8:30-10am, you might take some time for yourself, maybe go to the gym, do a morning meditation or have a shower, so you might entitle this time block as “workout and getting ready” You may then want to do some work from 10-1pm, so this would be entitled “work,” this is when I then take it a step further and use my diary to jot down all the things I need to do for work, but by 1pm, I stop working and break for lunch.
Taking things further:
In my Block Schedule, I have written H2O in each time slot as well - another tip from Brittany Vasseur. This reminds me to try and drink a glass a water in slot as well. You may want to schedule a five minute breathing exercise for each slot. You might want to schedule a few minutes of self care in each time slot. The options are literally endless and there is not really a right or wrong way to do it, so this will be different for everyone. Something that was mentioned in both YouTube videos, was to either 'unplug or plug in' meaning that you would either have your phone with you or not. You can set alarms for when each block ends... You can get very creative :)
But I work full time away from home...
For people who work full time, and not from home, the block schedule method can still work for you, however you will need to tweak it quite a bit.
You could perhaps do something like this:
6-8am Get up and get ready 8-8:0am Drive to work You may want to include listening to an audio book while driving to work 8:30-11am work 11-11:10 Tea break 11:10-1am work 1-2pm lunch You may want to schedule a 10 minute meditation in this slot. 2-3:30 work 3:30-3:40 Tea break, mindfulness exercise 3:40-5 work 5-5:30 drive home 5:30-9 make dinner, watch TV 9-11 bed routine You may want to do yoga or a meditation.
As mentioned earlier, the Block Schedule System will be different for everyone, and it is still possible to do it when working away from home. And super busy people can do this as well! The whole point of this system is to make life easier for busier people! And if you’re the sort of person who is totally disorganised and has everything all over the place - I urge you to try this, because this could change your life!
Unexpected Life Issues
It is very important to realize that this system cannot always be followed to exact time slots.
Sometimes things happen in life, and they have to be done at a specific time.
For example, I don't necessarily schedule outings for myself, because it's not something that I do everyday. I don't have children, and I work from home, so I don't go out everyday, but when I do go out, it would normally be in the afternoon during the 2-3:30 slot.
If my husband is at home, sometimes we go for lunch, but we go during that time to avoid the crazy lunch rush.
What about weekends?
The Block Schedule System is followed very loosely on the weekend, partly because for me, weekends are family time, going out to restaurants and shopping, going for picnics (in the summer) ,and just chilling out and watching a good movie or two.
I do my morning routine and evening routine, because these are just something I have to do to start and end my day off, and I love routine, it really helps me feel less anxious.
However, I don't work on the weekend and I don't do housework, so this system is only followed to a point on the weekends.
Four reasons why the block schedule method works so well:
1. It helps to motivate you by giving you a routine to follow
As someone who struggles with Anxiety, the Block Schedule System gives you that comfort of having a routine or a checklist to complete. This prevents a bored mind from conjuring up anxious thoughts as you are active and bust throughout the day.
2. It helps to get each task done, or at least help you to start a project to avoid procrastination
I'm a big procrastinator, so even by starting something, even if it's something small, in my mind, I've started it, and now I have to complete it
3. It enables you to move along swiftly from one task to the next, making sure optimal productivity is reached
This is one of the things that the Block Schedule System has helped me with a lot, because I am a great example of someone who will sit at my computer and work on something, and get carried away, and then work on it the whole day, often skipping lunch, and not being able to complete anything else.
4. It keeps you occupied
People who struggle with stress and anxiety need some kind of a routine, to keep the mind busy and occupied, that way, there is less chance of you sitting and thinking about the anxiety.
I urge every person who struggles with time management to give this system a try, and especially if you have anxiety - because it will only help you in the end!
Please feel free to check out the accompanying video:
THE BLOCK SCHEDULE SYSTEM - Incredible Time Management Method! - YouTube
" And into the Forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul " ~ John Muir
Never before have human beings been so out of tune with the natural world, and shockingly, apparently, 93% of Americans spend most of their time indoors!
If you have not heard of Forest Bathing, then you may want to do yourself a favour, and look into it, because it is hooking people all over, with promise of a new and effective way of reducing stress and anxiety.
What is Forest Bathing?
Forest Bathing or Forest Therapy was developed in Japan in 1980, so it is a fairly new concept, especially to the rest of the world.
Simply put, Forest Bathing, or it's more traditional name of 'shinrin-yoku' means 'taking in the atmosphere of the forest, and the idea is to simply sit, walk or spend time in a forest in a calm and relaxed way to nourish our senses.
Please don't get confused with exercising in nature, whereby you work up a sweat and your heart rate increases drastically.
This is not the idea.
Forest Bathing is a slow, relaxing and calming practice. It is designed to be therapeutic for the mind and soul, not exercise for the physical body (although as you will be walking, some light exercise will happen)
We all know how healing nature can be, but do you actually know why this is so?
Positive Ions vs Negative Ions
It's because nature gives off a host of negative ions, and this counteracts positive ions, which are emitted from things like TV's, computers, laptops, cell phones and all other electronics.
Considering most of us spend almost all of our time in close proximity to most of these items, we can quite see why we are in desperate need of these negative ions.
The sole reason why you feel so relaxed and rejuvenated in a forest environment is because there is practically nothing electronic within range, and even if you did happen to carry your smart phone with you while taking a walk, the negative ions within in the forest would be so great, that those negative ions would cancel out the smart phone's positive ones immediately. However in saying this, it is best to leave all electronics at home or the office!
Shinrin-yoko has been scientifically proven to help with reducing things like immune functioning, blood pressure, stress, mood, concentration, provide more energy and better sleep patterns. The trees and plants also create Natural Killer fighting cells (NK cells) These NK cells actually look for cancer cells and bacterial and viral infections within the body and destroy them! In fact, in Japan, there are some certified trails to do Forest Bathing, as blood samples obtained from people on these trails showed the most increase in NK cells!
Now think about it. Can you imagine what tree upon tree in a huge forest could do for you? The Forest has been described as medicine for the soul. Spending just 20 minutes fully engaging your senses in this type of environment, not to mention all the extra clean oxygen you will be inhaling, the Forest is truly a gift that is unfortunately not appreciated by too many humans!
How do I practice Forest Bathing?
Forest Bathing or Forest Therapy is using all your five senses to take in the healing and therapeutic powers of Nature.
As you walk through the forest, smell, listen, look, taste and feel everything around you. Let yourself just walk in any direction of the Forest (safety first though) that comes naturally or right for you - in other words, go with the flow.
If you compelled to touch something in the Forest, then do it (use common sense though) don't try to touch a poison ivy plant, or an unfamiliar spider that you see!)
A weird thing that I love to do, and I'm always compelled to do whenever I am in any type of nature environment, is to pick up handful of soil. It's so therapeutic and I love the feel of it in my hands!
How do I Forest Bathe?
You can Forest Bathe by:
- Walking slowly through a forest - Sitting under a tree or lying under a tree in a forest - Sitting and digging your bare feet into the earth - Collecting something like mushrooms or berries - Meditating in a quiet spot.
Whichever you choose to do, you have to practice Forest Therapy at a slow pace in order to entice your senses to take everything in. Ideally, if you choose to walk in the forest first, you want to find a place to sit down for a while, in order to fully appreciate the natural environment around you that the Forest brings.
Remember it is no good Forest Bathing in a noisy place where there are children and dogs running around. It has to be a quiet and peaceful place with no children or dogs with you! You will not experience Forest Therapy at it's best if you are feeling rushed and/or running after children and barking dogs.
How often should I Forest Bathe?
As often as you like! Even once a week Forest Bathes showed results, according to a Japanese study.
What if I have no Forests near me?
It's not a problem. You can reap similar effects in any kind of nature area where there are a lot of trees. If you really struggle to find this, or live in a city environment and can't get to a forest, then you can just find a quite place at a park. It won't be exactly the same, but you'll still get the benefits of nature.
if you are really stuck and simply cannot get outdoors, then I would recommend finding a place in your home that is clutter free. Place one or two plants around and set out some pictures of forests and trees around the space where you will be sitting.
Once good tip from the blog, Mama Natural, was to enhance the smells by using essential oils such as Pine, Juniper and Cedar Wood. Placing a bowl of soil and if you are able to get some pine cones would be an awesome addition to your space as well.
However this is only a back up plan if you are seriously unable to get outdoors at all!
There is a lot of controversy surrounding medication.
Some people are dead set against using any form of conventional medication, some can't use any because of religious reasons or bad side effects and then there are some people who can't do without it.
I simply say "Do what suits you!"
As someone who approaches anxiety disorder recovery holistically and in a complementary manner, I am a firm believer in the fact that medication has it's place in the world of mental health.
However, I am also a person who favours the natural way over the conventional way, but sometimes, when we are in a life or death situation, or perhaps in my case, in the depths of a crippling and severe anxiety disorder and having suicidal thoughts, medication can be the very thing that saves lives!
This does not detract from the fact that medication is very much overused, and is incorrectly looked at being a 'quick fix' when in fact recovery from anxiety disorder is SO much more than putting a pill in your mouth!
Recovery is not linear, and it's not a fast process, whether you opt to take medication or not. Recovery is complex and requires great courage and determination!
Does medication help anxiety?
Obviously when talking about methods that have helped a person, we need to always bear in mind the ever famous saying 'what works for one does not always work for another' Although in theory, humans have the same basic physiology and biology, we can also bear similarities to one person, but major differences to another. This explains why you may be allergic to cats, whereas your friend is not, or why your neighbour can't eat wheat, but you can. This is true for everything, ranging from diets, hobbies that we enjoy, beliefs, allergies, and of course medications and recovery methods.
So when we ask questions like 'does medication help anxiety, we have to look at both sides of the coin.
I have always described my own experience with medication as "being the hoist that lifted me up and off the cliff that I was dangling from, and lifted me up just enough so that I could help myself"
And that is exactly what it did! Medication helped me so much!
My anxiety disorder experience was sheer hell. It got so bad that I was incapable of functioning normally, I couldn't do the simplest of tasks. I couldn't drive, I couldn't even feed my dogs, and after a while, I began to experience dissociation as well.
When all is said and done, I was basically a lifeless entity living inside a glove, just floating around the earth like vapour. It felt like I was viewing the world from inside a bubble, and the world I was viewing was foreign to me.
Long story short, I was put onto the correct medication, and slowly but surely, each of my 45 symptoms started to disappear, making the world less foreign to me, and making my life a bit easier to cope with.
Once I was rid of the dissociation and many of my symptoms had reduced, my brain fog lifted, and this enabled me to help myself further, perhaps without the use of long term medication, and as I began to explore other methods and treatments aimed at anxiety disorder recovery, I began to slowly withdraw from most of my medication.
However, that is MY story. Another person may have a similar story of medication helping them, but maybe their medication is different from mine. Then there are people who felt no different taking medication and say it didn't help at all, and then you get people who say the side effects of the medication made them feel ten times worse!
And this is the problem. There is no one correct answer because there are many different ways to approach anxiety disorder recovery and many different medications available.
So, does anxiety medication work? Well, yes it can, and no, it can't, because it all depends on the individual.
All is all? I believe that medication can do wonders for short term relief, because for me, medication saved my life!
How anxiety medication works
If you decide to go the conventional medication route, you have to go to a doctor. This can vary as well. Sometimes people just go to their regular GP who prescribe some kind of anti depressant and/or refer them to a therapist. Sometimes the doctor will just refer the patient to a psychiatrist. Psychologists are therapists who can teach and help you deal with your emotions in a more healthy way, but they cannot prescribe medication. Psychiatrists are medical doctors who specialize in the mind, and therefore can prescribe medication.
Which anxiety medication is the best for me?
Firstly, a qualified doctor is the ONLY one who can decide what might be the best medication for you. They will typically need a full medical history, and will need to know any allergies or current medication that you are taking in order to prescribe something that may help you. Anti-depressants are serious drugs and their dosages are not to be played around with unless under the guidance of a doctor.
Unfortunately, it's not just as easy as asking 'which medication is best' because there are hundreds of different medications on the market, and finding the right medication may be a bit of trial and error. This is no fault of the doctors or yours, but the simple thing of that we're all different and react to things differently.
Remember that anti-depressants are designed to have a direct effect on certain hormones and this can either agree with a person or disagree with a person, which can result in side effects.
If a medication does not agree with you, you must go back to the doctor and keep trying until you find the correct one that works for you!
There are four main types of medication that a doctor could prescribe:
1. Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs): These are drugs that help to prevent re-absorption of serotonin by the brain. Well known examples of SSRIs include Prozac and Zoloft.
2. Serotonin Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRIs): These help to not only prevent re-absorption of serotonin, but another hormone known as Norepinephrine. These are the most common type of Anti-depressants that are prescribed.
3. Benzodiazepines: These are more commonly known as Tranquilizers, and help to slow the nervous system down. The tend to work fairly quickly. Xanax and Valium are two well known Benzodiazepines.
4. Tricyclic Anti-Depressants: Like SSRIs and SNRIs, Tricyclic Anti-depressants help prevent the re-absorption of serotonin, but additionally they help to keep other cell receptors from reabsorbing as well.
What are the side effects of anti-depressants?
I hate this question, because unfortunately, side effects are limitless. Every one knows that all medications come with an insert which has a list of different side effects that a person might experience. It doesn't necessarily mean that you will experience them, or if you'll even experience any for that matter.
However, you may experience something that has not been listed in the insert, or you may find that they make you feel worse that what you felt before, or that there is no change at all. A medication that is right for you, is one that helps to reduce your symptoms AND one that gives you no or very little side effects that don't disrupt your life.
Do anti-depressants make you gain or loose weight?
Anti-depressants have long had a reputation for making people gain weight, but again this is unique to every single individual. This was true for me personally with one of the anti-depressants I was prescribed back when I was much younger. However, some anti-depressants are more likely to cause weight gain than others, and about 25% of people complain about weight gain after taking antidepressants for more than 6 months.
Some worth mentioning are:
Some Tricyclic Anti-depressants such as Doxepin and Amitriptyline were listed as being big offenders, but some SSRIs like Paroxetine, Zoloft and Prozac were the worst for weight gain! There is also a type of anti depressant called Mirtazapine that doesn't really fit into any of the above mentioned categories, but it has shown time and time again to cause weight gain and increased appetite. However it's side effects are not as bad as other anti-depressants.
Experts say they don't really know the link between weight gain and anti-depressants. There are some theories that perhaps once the brains chemistry is more balanced and happier, the person feels more likely to eat as they associate food with pleasure. Another theory is that a person who has lost weight due to severe depression may start eating more once their mood lifts.
Personally, I feel it's fairly obvious why weight gain happens. If you know anything about hormones, you will know that they are what make up the endocrine system, which is a system of glands that produce hormones which are responsible for controlling many things such as weight, metabolism, sleep cycles and moods. When one hormone is not working properly, the entire endocrine system is out of balance. Anti-depressants are chemically altering the systems in our bodies, which first and foremost affect the hormones - serotonin being the most common one!
So is it really that shocking?
According to an article in WebMD, experts say that switching drugs may help if you have an issue with major weight gain. The problem however comes in when the drugs are actually working well with regards to lifting your anxiety or depression, but they are causing the weight gain. Switching drugs because of weight gain may help, but you may not get the level of effect with the new drugs as well as the old ones.
So it really is just about trial and error. You as the individual also need to decide if you are willing to have a bit of extra weight while you are recovering from mental illness, and tackle the weight issue once you are of more stable mind.
Registered dietitian, Samantha Heller says " The best thing you could do would be to head off the weight gain before it starts by switching to a more nutritious diet and increasing your daily exercise as soon as you start taking the anti-depressant. Even if you don't lose the weight immediately, you can begin controlling the gain and help your body to stabilize for a while"
Heller also goes on to say that " The bottom line here is that not only can healthy eating and exercise help control your weight gain, they can also improve your depression, which in turn may help you cut down on your medication - and that in turn makes weight loss easier"
However, it is emphasized that for some people no amount of healthy eating or exercise is going to keep the weight off. If you are one of these people, it's important to keep your eye on the prize - recovery from mental illness!
Can I take anti-depressants when pregnant?
In short - yes, you can take anti-depressants when you are pregnant, but this is a subject that needs very careful consideration.
It can be extremely tough on an expectant mother who is taking anti-depressants, to decide whether or not she will continue with them. Do you stop taking them to reduce risk to your baby, but to the detriment of your own mental health, or do you carry on taking them knowing the possible risks of the drugs on your unborn child?
Pregnancy is a highly emotional time for many women, with hormones contributing to a lot of body changes and emotions. Anti-depressants have been successfully taken by many pregnant women in the past, and continue to be taken by pregnant women and post pregnancy women as well who experience post natal depression.
In a nutshell, the decision lies with you, and if this is a dilemma you are faced with, you need to firstly weigh up the pros and cons of taking anti-depressants while pregnant, and then secondly and most importantly - this is something that has to be discussed with your doctor!
Regardless of whether you have been taking the medication for a long time, you have to inform your doctor that you are intending to become pregnant, so that they can suggest an alternative for you should it be that you cannot continue with your current medication.
In addition to your doctor or psychiatrist, it is also suggested that you speak with your OBGYN.
What are the risks of taking anti-depressants while pregnant?
It's important to know that no medication is 100% safe, regardless of whether you are pregnant or not, but research on anti-depressants and pregnancy have been mixed and inconclusive. Some of the more common risks to the baby include:
Birth defects Heart defects Miscarriage Premature Birth Irritability Breathing problems Low Blood Sugar Drug residue in breast milk
All in all, the risks are still pretty low, with only a 3% risk of having a baby with some form of birth defect from anti-depressants.
However on the other side of the coin, expectant mothers who have depression, and leave it untreated while pregnant can run the risk of passing the symptoms onto the baby! Shocking as this may seem, according to a study published in Biological Psychiatry, exposure to depression within the womb has been linked to malformations, heart problems, and premature birth. The symptoms can also carry on as the baby grows up, presenting themselves as irritable, less active and developmental and behaviour issues in early childhood. However, the possibilities of this happening are low.
It is also important to note that taking anti-depressants while pregnant holds greater risk in the first trimester, and according to Dr Nancy Byatt, (a physician and associate professor of psychiatry, obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Massachusetts), pregnant women who take anti-depressants in the second and third trimester have a much lower risk of affecting their babies.
The final thoughts here would also be to emphasize to never just stop taking your medication if you are already on anti-depressants.
Rather instead, be smart and if you want to stop taking them, then discuss with your doctor about weaning yourself off the medication before you conceive.
If you have an unplanned pregnancy, you still need to speak to your doctor, and they can work with you to decide the best course of action.
How to relieve Anxiety naturally
There are so many different kinds of natural and alternative remedies out there, and once again, it all comes down to what works for the individual.
When considering a natural or alternative treatment for anxiety, it is very important that you consult with a trained professional. Just because something is natural doesn't mean it is right for you, and if you are on other medication, this obviously has to be taken into account as well.
So lets look at the different categories of how to reduce Anxiety naturally
Lets first break it down a bit to understand the different types of treatment available:
Alternative Medicine: When methods that are non-mainstream like Acupuncture are used instead of conventional methods. This can include natural medicine as well.
Examples are: Acupuncture, Herbs, Aromatherapy, Reiki and Homeopathy.
Natural Medicine: A form of medicine that uses a natural approach.
Examples are Herbs and Aromatherapy.
Complementary Medicine: When both natural and conventional methods are used alongside each other. While it is important to get advice from a professional with any treatment, it is especially important with complementary medicine, as some conventional medication doesn't mix well with herbal remedies, and thus can cancel each other out, and lose any benefits they have.
Examples of this could be a form of conventional medication and Rescue Remedy or a Bach Flower Remedy, Herbal Teas and Aromatherapy.
Traditional Medicine: Uses knowledge and skills from a time before modern medicine. These are usually passed down through generations.
Examples are: Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda.
Holistic Medicine: Aims to treat the person as a whole, and treating the body, mind and spirit as one.
An example could be something such as treating a person with conventional medication, and suggesting counselling, a diet change, some form of exercise like yoga and meditation therapy.
As you can see, there are many routes that a person can try, and no one can really advise on the best treatment because it is all down to the individual.
One thing that needs to be made abundantly clear, is that, treatment is not just about what you put into your mouth in the form of pills - if you choose that route. Diet, lifestyle and therapy for changing thought patterns and habits are crucial. You can do this is the form of a reputable therapist, or else search on google for a course or method that you can purchase.
There are quite a few out there that are really good at helping to change negative and anxious mindsets. Just always remember, when shopping online, purchase wisely, and always research the reputability of someone first.
My personal favourite natural remedies for reducing Anxiety:
Here are a list of some natural remedies that I love. Please remember to always consult your doctor before taking any kind of remedy or medication! Also bear in mind that I do not use all of these at once!
Disclaimer: Products that are highlighted in purple will take you directly to a link as to where you can buy them online. Please note that I do receive a small percentage of commission from these. I have personally used and continue to use these highlighted products and can recommend them!
Further Disclaimers: I am not a medical doctor, psychologist or pharmacist. I do not endorse taking prescription drugs for long periods of time unless under the strict supervision of a doctor. Please do not alter your dosage or stop your medication without a doctors knowledge. Do not take over the counter medications without checking with a health professional. Do not mix herbal tinctures with any sort of medication without a doctors approval, as some herbal remedies and medications can cancel each other out and won't work.