Skip to main content

Address anxiety symptoms with these mindfulness techniques

We have all experienced anxiety in some form or another, and this sense of apprehension or fear about future events is your body’s natural response to stress.

For example, you may have felt nervous and a bit scared about going to a new school, starting a new job, or speaking in front of a crowd. You can’t control the outcome of these circumstances, and these unknowns can make you feel uneasy and fearful–that’s anxiety.

Related Videos

However, some people experience these feelings on a much deeper, more extreme level. For those with chronic anxiety, these feelings can last six months or more, often substantially interfering with everyday life.

In the article below, we’ll go over some of the physical manifestations of anxiety and explore some tried-and-true methods to manage anxiety. While there are natural supplements to manage anxiety, there is no actual cure to feelings of anxiety or an anxiety disorder. However, you can learn how to recognize the symptoms and calm yourself before they become too severe.

If you are experiencing anxiety that seriously limits your day-to-day functioning or lasts for extended periods of time, consult a healthcare professional for help.

Woman With Her Eyes Closed
Claudia Barbosa/Pexels

Physical symptoms of anxiety

Everyone experiences anxiety at one time or another. Sometimes those physical symptoms are minor, but others, such as panic attacks, are much more severe. Below are physical symptoms of anxiety that often accompany worried feelings.

Minor symptoms

  • Muscle tension
  • Trembling or shaking
  • Increased heart rate
  • Fatigue or weakness
  • Insomnia (or inability to sleep through the night)
  • Headaches
  • Digestive trouble, stomach pain, or nausea
  • Sweating
  • Breathing too fast

Severe symptoms

  • Extreme chills
  • Overheating
  • Chest pain
  • Tingling sensations or numbness in various body parts
  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • Fear that you’re going to die

Now that you know the most common physical symptoms let’s discuss how to manage anxiety.

The mind and body connection

Our minds are a powerful part of our being. Consisting of our consciousness, intelligence, imagination, and so much more, the mind also exerts a strong influence over the body.

For instance, when you’re afraid, your brain activates the sympathetic nervous system, causing physical responses like a rapid heartbeat, dilated pupils, and a rush of hormones to make you more alert. All of these are signs that your mind has triggered your fight or flight mechanism.

However, it’s possible to recognize these physical symptoms and disrupt their flow before they become overwhelming or prevent you from continuing your day normally. As soon as you notice these symptoms of anxiety coming on, take advantage of that mind-body connection to tell each part of your body to relax.

A common method to achieve this is the 5-4-3-2-1 mindfulness technique. Focus on five things you can see, four you can hear, three you can touch, two you can smell, and one you can taste. This method diverts your mind’s attention away from the stressors and toward very focused and specific tasks. This also engages other muscles in your body as you reach to feel objects and breathe deeply to search for smells.

Another effective method involves giving in to your fight or flight response. Whether it’s an angry bear in the woods or a difficult exam, your body wants to either flee or attack. By engaging in physical activity, your body tells your brain that you are distancing yourself from the danger, which can lower adrenaline levels and promote relaxation.

The breath connection

As noted above, connecting with your body and focusing on your breathing can anchor you to the present moment. Below is another process that focuses your attention on something other than what is causing the stress. In this instance, you focus all your energy on breathing.

To begin, close your eyes and breathe deeply for five seconds. Then, focus on any sensations that arise. What do your breaths sound like? Is the air warm or cold? How far is your chest expanding as you breathe in? Concentrating deeply on your breathing can prevent hyperventilation and offer a distraction from the anxiety-causing event.

Anxious Man Looking in the Mirror
Andrea Piacquadio/Pexels


Another method to calm anxiety is to manage your racing thoughts and organize them into manageable categories. Some do this mentally, imagining a filing system of sorts, while others make lists or mind maps.

Most importantly, these categories should not involve judgments such as good and bad or easy and difficult. Keep them as objective as possible and arrange them using groups like work projects, family commitments, or shopping lists. It may also help to organize chronologically, focusing on what should be done by the end of the day, week, month, or whatever timeline works best for you.

If you are living with anxiety, you are not alone–over 40 million adults in the United States suffer from anxiety, whether it’s mild or severe. While there isn’t a cure, it is highly treatable. As always, speak to a healthcare professional about your feelings of anxiety to learn more about the treatment options available to you.

BlissMark provides information regarding health, wellness, and beauty. The information within this article is not intended to be medical advice. Before starting any diet or exercise routine, consult your physician. If you don’t have a primary care physician, the United States Health & Human Services department has a free online tool that can help you locate a clinic in your area. We are not medical professionals, have not verified or vetted any programs, and in no way intend our content to be anything more than informative and inspiring.

Editors' Recommendations

Try these products for home wellness
A woman relaxing at a spa.

We all strive to be the healthiest forms of ourselves possible. With the rise in the wellness industry and certain fads, it can seem daunting to keep up and make sure you do everything to keep your body in optimal shape. Aside from keeping up, going to wellness salons and studios to feel better can do some damage to your wallet.

We want you to look good and feel good, so we rounded up five products for home wellness to better your day-to-day life. Whether you need a better shower, loosen your muscles or save time and energy otherwise spent at a supply store, we got you. Get these five products and start changing the way you live.

Read more
Equip your home office with these wellness tools
A woman experiences posture issues while working.

Even working out of your own home, your day to day is typically very similar to working in an office setting. You spend long hours sitting, looking at a computer screen, and trying (and often failing) to maintain good posture while focusing on the tasks at hand. Luckily, we’ve put together this list of five great wellness products to equip your home office with, ensuring that you’ll have everything you need to relax and ease the aches and pains of work right within your reach. Set yourself up for success by stocking your space with tools that help you take care of you.

With these products in your arsenal, you can turn your home office into a comfortable space where you’re able to relax and avoid common office stress injuries. Many people don’t even realize how working at a desk can affect their bodies, but small things can add up over time and eventually cause serious health issues. Whether it’s easing the tension of sore muscles, temperature control, or just giving yourself a well-earned scalp massage, these tools can elevate your space and bring some comfort and quality to your workday.

Read more
5 Exercise Bands That Take Your Workouts to Another Level
EDX 7-Piece Resistance Band Set

If you’re interested in resistance training, but find that traditional weightlifting isn’t your thing, exercise bands are the perfect solution. Their versatility can elevate your workouts in ways you’ve never imagined! Resistance bands come in a wide variety of resistance levels and allow movements that mimic the most intense weight workouts. They’re also excellent for active rest days to keep blood flowing to muscles while they recover from heavy weight work. 

If you’re on a budget, bands are much more affordable than machines or free weights, as well as being thoroughly portable and taking up less space than free weights. And for anyone who does favor weight workouts, BFR, or blood flow restriction bands are another type of exercise band that helps you maximize your workouts by isolating blood flow for ultimate size and tone at lower weight loads. The bands listed below can help your workouts reach new heights!

Read more