Small Changes You Can Make to Decrease Anxiety and Improve Your Mental Health

Here are some tips and tricks that you can use in your everyday life to help increase wellness.


Photo by Taylin Jimenez

Tommy Nguyen listens to music to help him focus while he catches up on schoolwork.

It would be an understatement to say that the past year has been a wild ride. With ever changing restrictions and uncertainty created by the pandemic, it made it hard to find comfort and decrease levels of anxiety. Mental health is extremely important to one’s well being so here are some ways to release pent up stress, decrease anxiety, and achieve clarity.
Listening to music
Probably the most simple on this list, listening to music can be a great way to relax. Music is a prominent thing in today’s world, and it is so easy to access it with the tap of a finger. Listening to music can lower your blood pressure, and your stress hormones, as a result, causing you to feel more relaxed and at peace. Putting on your favorite music or some calm tunes can make all the difference when overwhelmed.
“I listen to music while doing anything. When I am anxious or stressed I like to listen to music on my speakers and usually clean or do homework. It really does help me, and distracts me from my problems and also motivates me,” junior Kerstein General said.
It is scientifically proven that exercise helps relieve stress. It is probably one of the most important things you can do when it comes to releasing stress. It releases positive endorphins in the brain, and it helps enhance a sense of joy and well being. You can do something as simple as going on a walk or run around your neighborhood, or walking to meet up with friends
While it may seem pointless to some, having a journal and regularly writing your thoughts could be an amazing way to de-stress. With journaling you can write down all of your thinking, and ideas, this would allow you to understand them much more clearly. It can also help you express your emotions and allow you to be able to control them, it is a great way to improve mental health.
Yoga helps promote relaxation, this is almost the polar opposite of stress. Yoga benefits your body, mind and breathing, which can all be heavily affected by the presence of stress. While yoga is extremely beneficial to your body it can also help alleviate tense emotions that you may be holding. Even if you are not feeling stressed yoga is an awesome thing to get into, and comes with many positive physical and mental health benefits. If you want to get into it, look up yoga on YouTube, there are so many channels that do free yoga, from Lululemons to Boho Beautiful, the options are limitless.
Mindful meditation
Mindful meditation is a form of meditation where you focus intensely on your senses in the moment. What do you feel? How are you feeling? etc. Within this peaceful practice you focus on your breathing and the world around you. If you feel like you keep going and going, and become overwhelmed with stress, anxiety, or any other issues, mindful meditation could make all the difference. It allows you to disconnect from a busy schedule, and connect deeply with the world around you. This can help you redirect your energy and attention back to yourself.
“To de stress I watch YouTube videos, listen to music, and play with my cats. It helps me get my mind off of things. I believe these strategies could help others because they are all calming activities,” senior Aisha Colak said.
While these are all great ways to take a step back from everything and just chill, there are so many more things you can do. What is listed here may not work for you, and that’s ok. Something else out there will. If you’re in the mood, do some research, and find what is best for you, and make you feel the greatest.