Anxiety and Me: I freak out when I try and relax
In this week's podcast we are responding to a question from our inbox:
"When I finally sit or lay and try to relax, I get a freaked out feeling, because I don't have something to keep me busy. My body is so tense and when I try to relax I can't! I'll get the release of tension or feel a pain and then I freak out."
Points covered in this podcast:
- use guided audio to help you settle
a guided relaxation
or breathing practice
Guided relaxation gives you the chance to relax deeply while you feel supported and safe. You can release tension without your mind gate crashing your quiet time with anxious thoughts.
- mindful movement
Try yoga, tai chi or QiGong via a class, YouTube or a DVD
The idea is to occupy your mind with your breath or the movements of your body so that you feel fully engaged in relaxation rather than trying to stop and do nothing knowing that your mind will try and get to you in the quiet spaces.
Mindful walking is also very helpful
Try walking while listening to the sounds of nature, count your steps, feel your feet on the path. Make it a game - how much can you notice?
List three colours you can see.
List three sounds you can hear.
Now listen to your body: your breath, your feet making contact with the ground.
Count your steps with your breath
For help getting started with walking with awareness try matching your footsteps with your breath - take 4 steps as your breathe in - 2 steps as you hold your breath - and 5 to 7 breaths as you breathe out.
Engage your mind as much as you can and when it tries to wander - and it will - keep bringing it back to noticing something in or around you.
For more help with ways to stop anxiety getting to you when you try and relax listen to the full podcast here:
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