Anxiety is a feeling of nervous and uneasy. It’s a feeling that arises when an individual is forced to face a situation where they aren’t sure about the outcome, where their mental health is compromised.
Some anxiety symptoms are:
- Fast heart rate
- Cold hands
- Rapid breathing
The thoughts and feelings during a stressful time can cause anxiety.
Though there are many hobbies for people with anxiety, they may not be aware of some. Here is a video to help you understand what struggling with anxiety actually feels like. You can’t overcome it unless you know what it is.
There are many times when a person goes through anxiety and is unaware of it. There are different ways to help people who go through frequent anxiety.
Some of you who have severe anxiety should try different hobbies to avoid mental problems later. There’s a list of hobbies for people with anxiety further down the article, but first;
Let’s learn about the different types of anxiety disorders:
Types Of Anxiety Disorders
Some of these disorders can be cured by consulting mental health therapists and trying out different hobbies for people with anxiety. But some can be just reduced.
There are different types of anxiety disorders. They are:
1. Generalized Anxiety Disorder
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is a widespread disorder that many of us can go through during different situations in our life. This is a disorder where a person goes through anxiety during any slightly difficult situation or for no reason.
When you start worrying about the things you are not supposed to while dealing with small things, or daily life problems, you tend to think about consequences without even doing anything.
Here, reducing anxiety is easier than other types because it isn’t related to any particular problem; it’s completely because of unnecessary stress over unwanted things. By following different hobbies, this can be controlled.
2. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) occurs when people tend to overthink a lot. This leads to an obsession with doing a thing over and over until they think it’s perfect.
Examples are washing hands frequently and checking locks or appliances repeatedly. Curing this disorder can be problematic, but therapies and psychological help can be beneficial for you greatly.
The best way to deal with this is the trial and error method.
3. Social Anxiety Disorder
This is a common disorder that therapies or different hobbies can cure. Social anxiety is a type of anxiety where an individual gets anxious about daily social activities.
Some examples are having trouble talking to strangers, public speaking, or giving opinions. A person going through social anxiety can even experience extreme fear when around people. Commonly people with introverted personalities have this type of anxiety. This type of anxiety is also called phobia; people suffering from this type of anxiety fear social gatherings and crowded places where they have to interact.
Adult coloring books and yoga are the preferred hobbies for people with anxiety in this category. This can be controlled easily by practicing public speaking in front of your mirror.
4. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
PTSD usually develops after a person experiences something very traumatic, especially when they experience mental or physical harm. Anything related to a traumatic event can trigger anxiety in a person. Stress and anxiety can be major problems after experiencing any natural disaster or physical assault.
PTSD can be hard to cure completely with these hobbies, but they can help reduce it for a while. The reason behind it is that it’s related to one particular traumatic event and its pictures are hard to remove from the mind. Seeing a therapist can help with it, and these hobbies can also help for a short while.
Furthermore, you might have questions like: What are good hobbies that help with anxiety? What hobbies are good for mental health? What are some helpful hobbies for people with depression? Well, here is the answer to all that questions of yours.
10 Best Hobbies For People With Anxiety
Anyone can go through anxiety due to any reason. Struggling with anxiety can be a big problem, but facing it is the main way to tackle it. Therapies can help a person, but they should also try different things to calm themselves and get out of that anxious state.
There are lots of hobbies for people with anxiety; some of the best ones are:
Many people practice yoga to keep a peaceful set of mind. Negative thoughts are always there in the back of our minds. Yoga varies from gentle to challenging, and different poses give different health outcomes.
Doing yoga is a great way to calm your mind and refresh yourself from within. This is the most effective way to make people less anxious during stressful situations.
Practicing yoga for at least 10 minutes can boost your mood and reduce anxiety. A study was conducted where it was proven that yoga helps:
- Fight anxiety – particularly for people living with GAD and OCD
- Yoga relaxes body muscles
- Calms your mind
- Increases the flow of blood in the veins
Yoga can be beneficial for People with GAD because the habit of yoga decreases GAD daily.
Reduced stress can be achieved easily if regular yoga is practiced. Some of the best yoga poses for beginners to practice are:
2. Adult Coloring Books
When living alone or going through bad times, we tend to have more overthinking, which can lead to anxiety and depression. Spending time with a coloring book can help with forgetting about tension and relieving some stress.
Research says that coloring can be helpful for anxious people.
Because of coloring, we tend to use the creative part of the mind and automatically get less anxious. This is one of the best hobbies for people with anxiety, and coloring regularly can help you feel good too.
Yeah, you heard it right! Baking is one of the best hobbies for people with anxiety. When people had nothing to do in that time frame, they tended to do a lot of overthinking and turned toward their kitchen instead.
Therapists also advise baking to cope with loneliness and anxiety. Baking helps divert the mind from all the bad things going on. So, you know what to do when you feel alone or sad next time. Here again, when we are baking, we are using our creative minds, so it decreases anxiety.
4. Embroidery or Knitting
Unusual to hear, this is another creative hobby that helps many people who want to get rid of anxiety. Embroidery or knitting is another level of creativity. Much time has to be given to complete a whole embroidery or knitting work, and the time consumed for the entire work can really be helpful to many anxious people.
Since you spend a lot of time knitting, it takes away from the time you could spend dealing with your anxiety. It will keep you away from anxiety for a longer span of time, eventually decreasing your overall anxiety or, in some cases, completely vanishing it.
Knitting and embroidery are some of the best and most unique hobbies for people with anxiety. They don’t think about any other negative perspective or opinion, which helps them divert their minds.
There are loads of tutorials about embroidery and knitting on YouTube or other online platforms for anyone new to embroidery. You can refer to them for free and master the art of knitting or embroidery. As it is free, it is available to everyone, so if a person is thinking of learning it, they won’t have to spend money on learning, which is a plus too.
5. Watching Movies, or TV Shows
Are any movie fanatics out there? We’ve got the best option for you! From feel-good to romantic movies, any kind of movie except horror and thriller is perfect for you.
Avoiding thrillers and horror movies is good for anxious people because those genres can make you feel agitated or scared, which may lead to anxiety. It makes you keep guessing what’s going to happen next, which is not the best mindset to be in for people with anxiety.
When people with anxiety watch a movie, they usually feel devoured by the story. They stop thinking about their situation and stop stressing. A feel-good movie with a happy ending makes the person believe in the world’s goodness and revives their will to live happily.
The type of movies a person watches greatly impacts how they think. If a person watches horror and dark movies a lot, it can feed their anxiety. And suppose a person watches a feel-good or comedy movie. In that case, it will decrease anxiety because when you laugh, it stimulates many organs, activates and relieves your stress response, and soothes tension.
Watching feel-good and happy-ending holiday movies is always the best hobby for anxious people. This doesn’t require any physical effort, and the movies always have a pleasant and thoughtful impact on a person.
Click here to get a full list of feel-good movies. There are other hobbies for people with anxiety too, but this is just perfect as you have to sit back and watch and not bother with anything else.
6. Walking, Running, Exercising
Whenever you take a morning or evening walk in the fresh air, your body automatically starts forgetting about anxious feelings. When we spend time walking, the cold morning air touches our faces, chills our bodies, and calms our minds. It eventually starts our morning with a light headspace.
Although the effects of a 10-minute walk can be temporary, walking can give hours of relief from stressful thinking and end in a mood boost. Not only people struggling mentally, but anyone, in general, can achieve good physical health if they go for a walk or run every day.
We can also include exercising in this particular hobby as it gives similar benefits to keeping our body healthy and fit.
This is also a great way for people who dislike indoor activities. And walking without a destination is always a better option because you don’t pre-plan the future and overthink.
7. Listening to Music and Songs
Talking about hobbies for people with anxiety and missing out on the best hobby is a big no-no. Anxious people can never get bored with music; they can listen to it for hours and hours. From soothing songs to melodious tunes, we all love music. This is the ultimate solution to get all anxious thoughts out of your head.
Music has a ton of genres, from uplifting your mood to making you forget about anxious situations. Music is known for its soothing tones, which help many people calm their heart rates and achieve a peaceful state of mind.
A study was conducted where music helped people get over stress. But sometimes, listening to sad songs can increase your anxiety as you hang onto the sad lyrics, leading you to recall the past, which can bring back anxiety. So try and listen to music and songs with happy lyrics.
8. Reading Books
One of the best hobbies for people with anxiety is reading, which is the preferable option for people with social anxiety. Reading helps a person escape reality temporarily and helps them achieve a nice perspective about themselves. It also is a great way to get rid of stress and divert your mind from negative thoughts.
When you want to escape reality and get away from social anxiety, reading a book can help. Reading helps you escape into a feel-good world of fiction, which means you think about your real-life problems progressively less. Reading helps divert your mind and reduces anxiety.
But again, aim for books with happy endings and try to avoid reading horror/thrillers because the possibility of a bad ending may feed into your anxiety. Since reading takes a long time, you spend more time with the story than with your stress, which helps reduce your anxiety.
If you are looking for the best books for mood upliftment, here is the list.
9. Writing Journals
An underrated way to cope with anxiety is journaling. Not only do journals keep track of your daily life, but they also help you learn from previous life events.
People who tend to write journals lead a better life as they know what happened earlier and try to avoid running into a similar problem in the future. Avoiding anxiety-related problems becomes easy for them, and they lead a considerably less anxious life.
When you write about your day in the diary, it will make you think about the day you just spent; it will make you realize how you wasted your time just stressing about unwanted things, and it will make you realize that you could’ve done something productive, eventually motivating you for good.
Journaling your day will make you write your bad experiences in it, and when you are writing it in books, you are releasing a huge burden of sad moments from your head. So this way, journaling can be a constructive hobby to decrease anxiety.
For those who like writing, this is one of the best hobbies for people with anxiety. As you can cry your heart out in the journal and by writing it, you are, in a way, throwing it out of your mind.
Gardening is a great hobby for people who love nature wholeheartedly. Gardening is not only a great help with anxiety but also has other general mental health benefits. Gardening releases good chemicals in the brain, namely, serotonin and dopamine.
Serotonin is best known for reducing anxiety, boosting your mood, and making you feel happy. When gardening, you are in the lap of nature, full of oxygen and greenery around you. It calms your mind, and gardening keeps you busy from thinking about anything stressful or anxious.
Click here to learn more amazing things about gardening.
5 (Extra) Tips to Overcome your Anxiety
We have shared the 10 best hobbies for people with anxiety, how about we now share 5 tips that will help you get over your anxiety in a quicker manner?
Aromatherapy is quite popular nowadays. This therapy consists of the use of aromatic essential oils which have medicinal properties that will help you to improve your mind, physique, and mental health. According to studies, aromatic therapy is proven to lower the anxiety level which will improve your sleep too.
Some aromatic scents are very calming, some of the calming scents are:
- Ylang ylang
- Orange or orange blossom
You can perform aromatherapy in many forms:
- Using essential oils
- Lighting scented candles
- Using diffusers
- Bathing with bathing bombs
- Massaging with body oils, creams, massage lotions,
- Having facial steamers
Whether or not you can sing or not, sing out loud! For studies show that singing really lowers your stress and anxiety level. It will help your mind to relax and release all the unwanted tension. Singing will take out your day’s trouble and uplift your mood.
Sacculus, a tiny organ in our ear is reported to radiate vibration of a frequency of singing which causes immediate pleasure. So, no matter what your voice sounds like, singing is a great tip for people suffering from anxiety.
In one study conducted, participants had shown a decrease in their stress and anxiety levels after singing for one month as their daily routine.
You can also print out the song lyrics and sing them out loud. Some upbeat songs to relieve your stress and tension are:
- Roar by Katy Perry
- Waka Waka by Shakira
- Happy by Pharrel Williams
- Better When I’m Dancin’ by Meghan Trainor
- On Top of the World by Imagine Dragons
- Believer by Imagine Dragons
- You Are Loved by Stars Go Dim.
Laughter is indeed the best medicine. Laughter magically cuts out all the feelings of tension and stress. Laughing helps one to see a problematic situation from a different point of view, and the situation will being to seem less threatening.
When you laugh, you actually release the ‘feel-good hormones’ this creates a sense of good feeling and you still feel delighted even when the laughter subsides.
So what makes you laugh? Comedy shows? Any particular tv series? Cat videos? Well, make a list of it and get into the roller coaster ride of laughter.
Being humorous will also help you to lower your anxiety level and help you see difficult situations from a much lighter angle.
4. Cuddle with your Pet
How about some cuddle time? The next time you feel lonely, sad, depressed, stressed out, or anxious, cuddle your furry friend.
Petting our pets will help you release your anxiety and stress levels. This is also proven by science, cuddling with our pet animals helps us deal with stress more easily and reduces the feeling of loneliness. While you cuddle your pets, the feel-good hormones are being released giving you a sense of pleasure.
5. Abdominal Breathing
Most of us do not know this, but we have two types of breathing patterns:
- Thoracic Breathing, the ‘Chest’ breathing.
- Diaphragmatic Breathing, the ‘Abdominal’ breathing.
The easiest way to understand your breathing is to put one hand on your chest and the other on your belly button, now start breathing.
If you see the hand on your belly button rising more than the hand on your chest, you are performing ‘Diaphragmatic Breathing’ but if the hand on your chest is rising more than the hand on your belly button, then you are performing ‘Thoracic Breathing’.
Thoracic Breathing or chest breathing is actually a sign that you are breathing anxiously. When you are tensed or stressed out, you start to panic and start breathing via chest. Chest breathing does not provide enough oxygen and thus it might lead to increased heart rate, dizziness, and even panic attacks. So, when you are tensed, you may not understand how you are breathing, but this might take a toll on your life even!
In these scenarios, perform deep abdominal breathing. This will pump out an increased supply to your brain, which will help you calm down. Studies show that abdominal breathing for 20-30 minutes will lower stress and anxiety in your life.
Well, then! There it is; the preferred list of hobbies for people with anxiety. You can do anything that helps soothe your anxiety and get negative thoughts out of your head.
But if anyone goes through PTSD and OCD, things can get pretty hard for you, so consider therapy. Therapies can help you a lot, but following the hobbies for people with anxiety mentioned above can also help you to reduce them to a certain extent.
Click here to learn more about mental health tips.
- What can I do to release my anxiety immediately?
Ans. To release your anxiety immediately, you can do the following:
- Try talking your heart out to a friend or family member. Talking will help you a lot in lowering your stress and anxiety. It will make your thoughts clearer, the other person might also give you some fruitful insights which might help you.
- Using calming breathing techniques.
- Do meditation.
- Perform various exercises. Run, walk, and swim to help you release those extra tensions.
- Why anxiety is worst at night?
Ans. In the daylight, among all other people, you might not feel anxious, but when teh dark night comes and you go alone to sleep anxiety might creep you then. We feel anxious more at night because of:
- Bad sleeping habits.
- Stress in daily life.
- Other health-related issues.
Name – Suvangi Chanda
Qualification – MBBS Student
Instagram handle – https://instagram.com/_suvangi._?igshid=NTdlMDg3MTY=