How to Overcome Anxiety in the Digital World

Technological advancements in the areas of communication have given us the ability to process colossal amounts of information in a short period of time. Smartphones and tablets ensure that you are constantly in touch with the world around you and your many social networks.

Recently a hot topic of discussion has been the impact that this massive degree of stimulation has on our mental health and cognitive abilities. The way we observe and react to events in our world has been revolutionised with the emergence of social media and instant news updates.

While this constant flow of information is beneficial in many ways, there is some evidence that this overload can affect the individual’s physical and mental well-being.  By understanding the human emotions of fear and anxiety, we can learn how to deal with anxiety and fear in today’s age.

Causes of Anxiety and Worry

The human mind is complex and can only process a few tasks at a time consciously. The rest of these tasks are filed away to be completed at a later date. If there are too many tasks to be completed, the mind starts to feel overwhelmed, “thinking” of all the things left pending.

This causes the mind to obsess over the unfinished tasks, only stopping once they are complete. This sense of helplessness and anxiety is only enhanced by technology.

A classic example is something you will come across each day with your smartphone. The minute you see a notification on your phone, whether it’s a message, an alert or an email, you probably experience a strong urge to check it and tick it off your list.  This is the mind experiencing anxiety over getting things done.

Unfortunately, most of us can’t have all our tasks finished at all times. Some things can take longer, and some require collaboration and the participation of others. This causes the task to remain unfinished in the mind. In such a situation your mind will remind you constantly of the task and create anxiety over the things left undone. Your stress levels get even worse when you try to juggle too many tasks at the same time. This can result in a loss of productivity and even keep you up at night.

Ways to Tackle Anxiety

Fortunately, there are small steps you can take to deal with the overload of stimuli and stress. Follow some of these habits to start feeling less overwhelmed, one day at a time.

1. Ensure You Get a Good Amount of Quality Sleep

Sleep is possibly the most important factor when it comes to your mental and physical well-being. But it’s not just about the amount of sleep you get, but also the quality of sleep. Following a few steps before hitting the sack can significantly enhance your sleep quality. Eliminate caffeine completely after 5 pm and stop using all forms of electronic media at least half an hour before bed. Keep your phone away from your pillow and keep your room dark and cool.

2. Get Any Negative Stimuli Out Of Your Life

If there is something or someone that brings negativity into your life, it may be time to say goodbye to it. If you interact with someone online who regularly uploads negative comments or posts, unfollow them. Watching the news can be depressing, so it is better not to watch it if it brings you down.

3. Eat a Healthy, Balanced Diet

It’s a good idea to avoid anxiety triggering foods such as sugar and coffee. Caffeine prompts the release of adrenaline which stimulates a fight or flight response in the brain. This can induce nervousness and aggravate symptoms of anxiety.  If you can’t cut these out completely, try to limit your intake. Also stay away from junk food and eat wholesome meals comprising of veggies, protein, and healthy carbs. Avoid alcohol. Never skip breakfast and indulge in snacks like nuts and berries.

4. Take Up a Sport or Engage In a Workout That You Enjoy

Following a workout routine every day has numerous benefits for your body and the mind. Taking up an activity such as running will not only help keep you physically fit but also have a meditative effect on your mind.  In this digital age, there are a number of accessories that you can use to increase the effectiveness of your workouts such as fitness trackers and even virtual reality headsets!

Finding Peace and Joy 

Our mental health can affect everything from how we feel about ourselves to our relationships with others. Your thoughts are conscious decisions you make every day, so try to stay positive and optimistic. Try some of the tips mentioned above, and you’ll be able to find peace and joy in this fast-paced digital world. For more tips on overcoming anxiety take a look at the infographic below.

Rising Levels of Anxiety In A Digital World

4 Easy Ways To Release After-Office Stress

Once we get into the economic society and establish a daily routine, our life becomes pretty predictable: wake up, shower, dress, eat breakfast, go to office, come back home. How do you feel once your work day is over? Do you sometimes find yourself still thinking about the work when you could actually be giving this time to yourself?

In order to give a break to your mind and avoid thinking about the work once the day is over, it is very important to create a new habit. Here I would like to share what I do on my daily life in order to stop thinking about work.

1. Find a physical activity that relaxes your mind

Doing a physical activity on your daily routine will do more than just release your stress. We always hear “healthy mind in a healthy body”, and it is true. Exercise bring a bunch of benefits such as producing endorphins that will help you be happier, regulate your calories, build strong muscles and bones and generally improve your well-being.

As a person who practices yoga I strongly recommend you to start the journey as yogi. However, if you feel like doing something more active, you may choose any of these: going to the gym, cross-fit, swimming, even dancing could be an option. 

No matter which activity you chose to practice, the important is the perseverance of doing the exercise which will allow you to make it a habit until it becomes something natural to you on your day-to-day basis, just like brushing your teeth or eating breakfast. 

2. Spend time with someone you care for

Once returning home from office, many of us continue either thinking about the work or just spending time on social media or TV. We may often skip even having dinner with our family members and spend a quality time together. Here is another simple, yet important aspect that will help release after-office stress: spend time with your family or someone you care for.

There is noting more rewarding than meeting real people and sharing quality time together. Go for a dinner with your friend or have a cooked meal at home with your family. You may even organize some activity together, like going for a movie, attending a concert, or just sitting in a park, talking and enjoying the nature.

We are a part of the society and living real life apart from social media will give you fresh energy to be used for the time that you spend at the office and need to be productive again.

3. Disconnect yourself

Living in a busy life, being overwhelmed with many responsibilities and equipped with many gadgets that require our immediate attention, it is very important to allow some precious moments to absolutely disconnect from everything.

One of the main things that we usually do is to get online right after finishing our work. Though you may be using internet for personal reasons and scrolling through your Facebook or Instagram just for fun, this habit actually does not let our brain rest fully. We are still consuming information and making ourselves engaged in external events or happenings. Try to be at least 5 minutes only with yourself. It will give space in your brain to slowly connect from one activity to another. You will see how after 5 minutes of being with yourself, you will do every next activity with more awareness and enjoyment. Be aware to approach those moments of silence in the most positive way.

4. Meditate 1 minute as a first step

To meditate for 1 minute a day? Yes, start with baby steps. 1 minute meditation after finishing your office work will create an empty space in your mind that will positively help you get rid of your thoughts, but not only that. It will create a habit to consciously decide on spending time to release and relax your mind.

Meditation is a very simple tool that you can use to relax your body and the mind. The main purpose in meditation is to focus your mind on a single thought. Is it possible? Yes, eventually when your practice becomes more constant and you add more minutes to your meditation, you will be able to spend more time and train your mind to be focused on a single thought. And this is where the magic happens: when you observe your mind relaxed and concentrated, you will observe how easy your body starts to relax with every breath in and out.

No need to take your work home and stress about it. All it takes is creating a new habit which will not only make your mind and body relax; it will increase your productivity at work.

Have you tried any of these tips before? Share with us and Jason L how it was and let us know if you have ideas for more tips that could help release after-office stress.