ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

5 Healthy Ways To Reduce Stress and Anxiety Naturally

Updated on July 1, 2012

As society increasingly becomes more fast-paced and deadline-driven, stress and anxiety levels in recent years have been on the rise. Many sufferers of anxiety and stress turn to prescription medication to relieve their symptoms for a quick fix. The downside to this solution is the continuous dependency on medication which treats only the symptoms and does not address the cause. This article lists five major ways to relieve stress and anxiety naturally. Whether you are a chronic sufferer of generalized anxiety disorder, are worried about your finances, job, an upcoming test, relationship problems, etc., these steps will help to regulate your body chemistry so that it can better handle stressful conditions.

1. Exercise Regularly

This is the number one most effective way to help your body cope naturally with stress, anxiety, and even depression. The endorphins released by exercising (especially cardiovascular exercise) cause the body to feel happier, calmer, and more relaxed. Unfortunately, when we are stressed, we have a tendency to not want to work out because we are so busy, tired, or wound up, and the thought of exercising seems to be just "1 more thing" on top of everything else we are concerned about.

In order to overcome this, it is imperative to set up a regular exercise schedule ahead of time. Block off at least 20 minutes of time on your calendar dedicated to your preferred form of exercise. Generally cardiovascular exercise is the most beneficial for stress relief, but any exercise is better than nothing. Commit only to exercising during these 20 minutes. Do NOT dismiss these times and book other events over them. Even when you are not feeling stressed, it is imperative you continue to regularly exercise to maintain your body's ability to cope with anxiety when high-pressure situations do occur. Just 20 minutes a few days a week is not a lot to ask when it comes to your mental and physical health.

Naturally, this method also works best in combination with healthy eating habits (i.e. complex carbohydrates in the form of whole grains, leafy green vegetables, fruit, and foods low in simple sugars and fats).

2. Change Your Routine and Environment

This method has worked exceedingly well for me on multiple occasions when I have been on the verge of breaking down. When you are stuck in the same routine and work environment day in and day out, as the stress builds, it seems the pressures become insurmountable. By taking a week for vacation or even a weekend trip away from your home and environment, your brain resets and is stimulated by new sensations and feelings. This removes you from the negative pattern of your thoughts and helps to refresh you so that when you return back to your usual life, your brain can find new ways to tackle situations that seemed impossible.

If you cannot get away for a vacation, at least try to change up your daily routine somewhat. Take a walk around the office periodically throughout the day. Call up a friend and grab a drink or dinner after work if you normally just head on home and cook. Take a class and learn a new hobby. You will feel empowered by learning a new skillset.


3. Meditate or Pray.

As a Christian, I find that sitting in silence in a natural sanctuary (i.e. a garden or walking trail with few people) and asking God to give me peace and strength for the day brings a sense of calm over me. This is different from normal prayer. Instead, I remain silent, admire God's creation, and allow Him to speak to me or give me His peace that transcends all understanding.

For those who are not Christian or religious, meditation also helps. Sit quietly and draw a picture in your mind of a place you would like to be, carefully filling in all of the details and allowing yourself to feel that place with all 5 of your senses. If you find your mind starts to wander, catch yourself and re-focus. Do this exercise for 10-15 minutes or more as you become more adept at it. Like changing your routine and your environment, this forces your mind to focus on a pleasurable place completely in your imagination, thus pushing out the worries of the world.

4. Watch a Funny Movie or Read a Book That Makes You Laugh

In general, smiling and laughing are great ways to relieve stress and anxiety. I suggest a funny movie or book because the characters and plot will whisk you away to another reality outside of your own and allow you to feel happiness and humor at their situations. Again, your concentration and focus are removed from your own situation, allowing your brain to rest from its constant racing thoughts and cycling fears.

5. Focus on Achievements Accomplished in the Past.

Oftentimes stress and anxiety stem from our feelings of being out of control of a situation or of our lives. By reminding ourselves of the things we are thankful for and of our accomplishments from the past, we realize that there are many great things in our lives that we are blessed with. We recall that we ARE capable human beings and have done the best that we can and can take pride in the fact that we have done all that is humanly possible. Knowing that success IS possible, and reminding ourselves that our lives are worthwhile help us to focus on the positives in our lives rather than the negatives and seemingly impossible outcomes.

Stress and anxiety are silent killers that can be very damaging to the human mind and body if left unchecked. These are 5 ways that have helped me to relieve potentially damaging anxiety in the past when I have felt overwhelmed by the pressures of my job and my life. I hope that they will be beneficial to you as well!


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Mei Eden profile imageAUTHOR

      Mei Eden 

      6 years ago from Houston, TX

      I'm glad the tips can be helpful for you! Thanks for commenting and nice to meet you too!

    • vespawoolf profile image


      6 years ago from Peru, South America

      These are helpful reminders. I do some of these things but forget to do others. Thanks for your ideas! I plan to put them into practice.

    • Mei Eden profile imageAUTHOR

      Mei Eden 

      6 years ago from Houston, TX

      Thanks Christy! Me too - one of my favorite forms of exercise that doesn't feel like exercise is taking my dogs for walks everyday. It's fun AND healthy.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 

      6 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Great tips here that are natural methods; let's keep ourselves healthy! I love to walk regularly. I vote up :)

    • Mei Eden profile imageAUTHOR

      Mei Eden 

      6 years ago from Houston, TX

      Spread a smile: Thanks for the great advice! I 100% agree. Anything that draws your mind away from what is unpleasant and allows it to rest in what is natural and pleasant is great stress relief.

    • Spread a smile profile image

      Spread a smile 

      6 years ago

      Going for a walk and just smiling at strangers or picking up a conversation with them also helps to lift the mood. The best bet to overcome stress is forget that you have it by indulging in something that you may like..say for example cooking, dancing ...anything that gives happiness to the stressed individual.

    • Mei Eden profile imageAUTHOR

      Mei Eden 

      6 years ago from Houston, TX

      snowdrops: Thanks so much for the comment. I hope they can help you in those times when life just seems like it's throwing too much your way.

    • Mei Eden profile imageAUTHOR

      Mei Eden 

      6 years ago from Houston, TX

      dotty1: Thanks so much! Yes, I feel like the world has become a more stressful place in recent years compared to when I was growing up! I'm so glad the tips can be useful for you!

    • snowdrops profile image


      6 years ago from The Second Star to the Right

      Yeah, these are great tips/suggestions.

    • dotty1 profile image


      6 years ago from In my world

      Really usefull hub especially in a time where there is so much stress :)

    • Mei Eden profile imageAUTHOR

      Mei Eden 

      6 years ago from Houston, TX

      billybuc: Oh! Thanks so much! I really appreciate the feedback - I have corrected the misspelling. I hope the suggestions are useful for people. :) They've been great solutions for me in the past.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      6 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Great suggestions all of have one misspelling in one of your headings...environment....just wanted to let you know.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)