10 practical and effective ways to calm the nervous system


Negative emotions such as worry, stress, and anxiety can cause us physical and mental discomfort by stimulating our nervous system. Worrying about the future, overthinking, social crises, loss and grief, failure, reversal of fate and many similar situations can upset the balance of the nervous system and cause us various problems such as insomnia, burnout, hopelessness, digestive problems, migraine attacks. Fortunately, there are a number of actions that can help calm the nervous system, calm anxious thoughts, and reduce stress. Here are 10 practical and effective ways to calm the nervous system during especially difficult times:

do breathing exercises

Deep breaths are one of the simple yet effective ways to regulate the nervous system. Deep breathing helps regain control of the parasympathetic nervous system and sends signals to the mind and body that there is no “urgency or fearful situation.” You can take deep breaths and repeat this several times, or try different breathing exercises focusing only on your breathing. You can check out our article “Breathing Exercises: 8 Different Breathing Techniques That Relax and Energize” for various techniques such as the 4-7-8 breathing or box breathing exercise and more.

Follow the 90 second rule

Renowned neuroscientist D. According to Jill Bolte Taylor, we can feel various physical and mental changes in the face of complex and stressful situations and events; this is due to the “fight or flight” signals our brain sends. For this reason, reactions such as screaming, throwing things or crying can occur, and our balance is disturbed, our nervous system goes into decline. Dr. Taylor points out that it is necessary to wait 90 seconds before doing anything, especially in these situations. Thus, instead of reacting with instinctive impulses, we can think, calm down and take a more correct position. 90 seconds can play a calming role to get away from triggers that cause negative effects such as stress, pressure and anger. In our article “Increase Self-Control with the 90 Second Rule” you can learn how this rule is applied, which effectively calms your nervous system.

Navigate through your mind

thoughts wander or mental navigation, an effective way to calm down, calm the nervous system, using the power of visualization. Mental health expert and renowned neuroscientist Dr. According to Caroline Leaf, visualizing pleasant actions and images is a very useful way to feel better. By visualizing a favorite place, a scene you enjoy, or a journey you are taking in great detail, you may feel like you are doing these activities, and you can soften your angry, tense, angry, or angry state.

Repeat the positive mantra

When disturbing thoughts take over and you find it difficult to silence the negative voice in your mind, you can choose a mantra to calm yourself and repeat it as many times as you need. “I feel calm, I’m fine, I’m lucky with what I have, I show love for myself, I deserve to be appreciated, I’m growing, I’m healing …” You can try chanting mantras such as:

Practice relaxing activities

You can help calm your nervous system with activities that will relax your body and mind. Through yoga or meditation, you can calm yourself down and reduce the effects of stress on your nervous system. You can also try various self-massage techniques such as abhyanga or prepare yourself a relaxing bath using the power of aromatherapy. You can calm negative thoughts and the effects of stress by taking a warm shower, inhaling soothing scents, or listening to soothing music.

get distracted

If you still cannot calm your mind by doing the relaxation activities we mentioned above, if silence or a calm environment free of distractions and triggers is not enough to calm your nervous system, then you can turn to activities that will direct your attention in a different direction. direction and take you. Cleaning the house, cooking, drawing mandalas, or gardening will help you take your mind and body away from negative thoughts and worries for a while. You can also find more suggestions in our article Relaxing Activities You Can Do to Take Your Mind Away from Negative Thoughts.

Pay attention to your diet

Our diet has a direct effect on our nervous system, whether we realize it or not. The right diet can help our body cope with stress, and the wrong foods can act as a negative trigger on the nervous system. For example, foods like caffeine, alcohol, and packaged foods that are high in sugar can increase stress, anxiety, and anxiety. You can organize your diet with inspiration from our article Anxiety Foods and Herbs That Support Feeling Good.

give thanks

The power of gratitude is an approach we face in many areas of life. We can give thanks more and more consciously so that we can appreciate what we have, focus on half the glass instead of seeing it half empty, and change our perspective to a positive one instead of drowning in negative thoughts. When you feel anxious, anxious, or stressed, you can take a few minutes to practice gratitude. If you’re having trouble concentrating while thinking, you can make a list of everything you’re grateful for and keep a gratitude journal for yourself. In trying to heal the deterioration caused by stress in your nervous system during difficult times, if you fall into the delusion that you have nothing to be grateful for, you can open your notebook and read everything you write.

Combine negative and positive

Renowned neuropsychologist D. Judy Ho offers a method of calming the nervous system that most of us have never thought of before; combination of negative and positive. Namely, Dr. Ho says that singing negative thoughts to the tune of a positive, relatively upbeat song helps relieve stress, which puts a strain on the nervous system. “When you do this, you will find that negative thinking goes away and you can get rid of the dark thoughts that are harming your nervous system.” As an example, he shares: a cheerful birthday song (happy birthday song) like “today is going to be a busy day…”

Get professional support

If your anxiety levels are very high, if you’re having a hard time coping with the stress you’re experiencing, and if you’ve had trouble calming your nervous system and suppressing negative feelings and thoughts for a long time, it may be time to seek professional support. Talking to a therapist can help you identify techniques and new strategies that can speed up your healing and be more effective for you. You can seek professional help by recognizing that you are not alone and that asking for support does not make you weak.

Finally, you can also check out our articles below:

Or is your nervous system always on the alert?
Scientifically Proven Vagus Nerve Effects on Mind and Body Health
The fight and flight response of the body: why do we have panic attacks?

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