The outdoor can provide us with somewhere we can get away from the stresses and strains of everyday life, or even for a holiday. Sometimes it isn’t easy for people to just get outdoors, especially if you suffer with Anxiety. Adventuring with Anxiety can seem daunting, but it is possible!
I have suffered badly with panic attacks and generalised anxiety and I had to work with a therapist to be able to leave the house alone and then build up to hiking. This was a learning curve and here is what I learnt!
Here are 5 things you can take to help with anxiety outdoors
– A plan –
What will happen if something triggers anxiety? It is always possible to sit, stand, or even do yoga; remember that you are not trapped and your panic will pass. Additionally, I carry medication in case my Meniere’s or Asthma kicks off and if things get too much, I sit and take 5 minutes (I carry a foldable sit mat for these occasions).
– Fuel –
Would you drive your car without fuel? Like a car requiring fuel to drive, your body requires food fuel to live and exercise. Calm Clinic state that hunger can cause anxiety symptoms or make current anxiety worse; therefore, it is imperative to eat a balanced diet and fuel your body correctly before, during and after exercise.
– Tea (Caffeine free) –
Ok, this depends on the weather, but there is nothing better than sitting on the top of a mountain or in the middle of a forest with a cup of tea. Why caffeine free? Be Brain Fit confirm that caffeine can contribute to anxiety disorders, which is why it is best to give caffeine a miss! This could go hand in hand with your Exposure Therapy; in my case, the ability to sit on a summit or in the middle of nature without immediate help or escape was a massive step. With a cup of tea, you can practice letting anxiety pass, enjoying the view and feeling that you are in control.
– Phone –
This can always provide a sense of security if you do require help. If you will be in an area where no mobile signal is possible and would like extra piece of mind, then there is the RapidSOS app (note: must be pre-bought and pre-downloaded). If you have a racing mind, your phone can also double up to make notes and take photos.
– Camera –
Capture the moment and have a constant reminder that YOU CAN DO THIS.
Do you have any things you pack to help with anxiety?
Remember: if it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you.
Love and peace