5 Ways To Cope With Anxiety

5 Ways To Cope With Anxiety

For those of you who need some helpful tips, this article is for you.

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Anxiety sucks. Unfortunately, it tends to pop out its ugly head during stressful times (*cough cough* new semester *cough cough*). Not only that, but not everyone has easy access to a therapist or other medical means. Don't fret, though! There are plenty of ways to help yourself when your anxiety feels like it's at its peak.

Disclaimer: I'm not a mental health professional, I'm just sharing some tips that help me whenever I'm dealing with excessive anxiety. Hopefully one of these tips can help you too!

1. Take a breath and meditate

Patrick meditating Giphy

Meditation is actually fairly simple to do, and it can be done basically anywhere. It's not just for spiritual enlightenment — the simple act of solely focusing on your breathing can do wonders for your anxiety. If it's your first time meditating, you may find your mind trying to wander; it's important to bring your thoughts back to your breathing when you catch yourself wandering. There are some really great apps that help users with breathing exercises for meditation just by typing "anxiety" in the App Store search bar (and most of them are free!).

2. Stay away from caffeine

Futurama coffee Giphy

This one is hard to stick to, but it really does help. Coffee is great when you're running on three hours of sleep, and you've got five classes and eight hours of homework to get through. For people with anxiety? It'll get your adrenaline going and your mind raising. Save those milk tea or coffee runs for low-stress days.

3. Drink hot, herbal tea

Chamomile tea

Tea is not only great for your physical health but for your mental health, too. A hot cup of chamomile tea is soothing and a good way to start your day or prepare for a night's rest. It relaxes muscles and helps with insomnia. If you're not a huge fan of the taste of chamomile, there are a lot of different herbal teas with different flavors to choose from, such as peppermint or fruit teas, like lemon and hibiscus.

4. Distract your mind

Relaxing

If your mind is racing with random fears, it's hard to focus on anything else. It's difficult to do homework or get some sleep when your anxiety kicks in. Try putting in some earphones and listening to something. Some people require complete silence when working, sleeping, or whatever it may be, but sometimes it really helps to have some background noise. Personally, I like to listen to podcasts when I'm working on schoolwork and instrumental music when I'm going to sleep. Some people find white noise to be really effective, such as sounds of rain or waves rolling onto the shore. Reading, cooking, or focusing on crafts are also effective and distracting. Whatever floats your boat!

5. Break a sweat

Winnie the Pooh exercising Giphy

Even fifteen minutes of cardio can be very beneficial. While exercising, your brain releases chemicals that fight stress! Your heart also pumps more oxygen to your brain and chemicals are released that help your overall mood. Now if running isn't your thing, there are other options you can choose, such as the elliptical or diving into the pool to swim a couple of laps.


Obviously, these tips aren't cures for anxiety, but they can be beneficial. I hope you guys try them out if you haven't already!

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.
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Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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For Camille, With Love

To my godmother, my second mom, my rooted confidence, my support

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views

First grade, March. It was my first birthday without my mom. You through a huge party for me, a sleepover with friends from school. It included dress up games and making pizza and Disney trivia. You, along with help from my grandma, threw me the best birthday party a 7-year-old could possibly want.

During elementary school, I carpooled with you and a few of the neighborhood kids. I was always the last one to be dropped off, sometimes you would sneak a donut for me. Living next door to you was a blessing. You helped me with everything. In second grade, you helped me rehearse lines for history day so I could get extra credit. In 4th grade, you helped me build my California mission.

You and your sister came out to my 6th grade "graduation". You bought me balloons and made me feel as if moving onto middle school was the coolest thing in the entire world.

While you moved away from next door, you were a constant in my life. Going to Ruby's Diner for my birthday, seeing movies at the Irvine Spectrum and just hanging out, I saw you all the time. During these times, you told me about all of the silly things you did with my mom and dad, how my mom was your best friend. I couldn't have had a greater godmother.

In middle school, you pushed me to do my best and to enroll in honors. You helped me through puberty and the awkward stages of being a woman.

Every single time I saw you, it would light up my entire day, my week. You were more than my godmother, you were my second mom. You understood things that my grandma didn't.

When you married John, you included me in your wedding. I still have that picture of you, Jessica, Aaron and myself on my wall at college. I was so happy for you.

Freshmen year of high school, you told me to do my best. I did my best because of you. When my grandma passed away that year, your shoulder was the one I wanted to cry on.

You were there when I needed to escape home. You understood me when I thought no one would. You helped me learn to drive, letting me drive all the way from San Clemente to Orange.

When I was applying to colleges, you encouraged me to spread my wings and fly. You told me I should explore, get out of California. I wanted to study in London, you told me to do it. That's why, when I study abroad this Spring in London, I will do it for you.

When I had gotten into UWT, you told me to go there. I did and here I am, succeeding and living my best in Tacoma. I do it for you, because of you.

When I graduated high school and I was able to deliver a speech during our baccalaureate, you cheered me on. You recorded it for me, so I could show people who weren't able to make it to the ceremony. You were one of the few people able to come to my actual graduation. You helped me celebrate the accomplishments and awards from my hard work.

When your cancer came back, I was so worried. I was afraid for you, I was afraid of what I would do without the support you had always given me. When I was in Rome, I went to the Vatican and had gotten a Cross with a purple gem in the middle blessed by the Pope to help you with your treatments. It was something from me and a little bit of my mom in the necklace, the gem.

Now, sitting so far from you away at college just like you wanted me to. I miss you. I wish I was there to say goodbye.

I'll travel the world for you, write lots of stories and books for you, I will live life to the fullest for you.

You are another angel taken too early in life. Please say hello to my parents and grandma in Heaven for me.

Lots of love,

Haiden

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