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How to Calm Anxiety: 23 Ways to Reduce Stress

It's been a rough few years. So we asked mental health experts for their favorite ways to find some calm

By | Stefanie Groner |

We are in the midst of a global anxiety crisis—one that didn’t just disappear once we hit 2022—so naturally, we’re all wondering how to calm anxiety. “You can’t keep a fight-or-flight response up for a year,” says Miranda Beltzer, a Ph.D. candidate researching emotion regulation and anxiety disorders. “It’s a perfect storm of things that can make people emotionally disregulated.”

According to the Household Pulse survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Census Bureau, well over 50% of adults in their 20s and 30s exhibited symptoms of anxiety- or depression-related disorders in November 2020, and the stats have been (understandably) high since the weekly survey began in April 2020. As anxiety rises, so does our need for self-care

“Of course, we’re all feeling down, but that doesn’t mean we get to skip taking care of ourselves,” says Julia Colangelo, DSW, LCSW, a therapist and adjunct lecturer at Columbia University. “It’s important to honor any and all emotions, and continue to seek out support as you may have before the pandemic.”

We asked experts in anxiety and emotion regulation for their favorite stress reduction strategies so you can figure out how to calm anxiety.

1. Grab a weighted blanket.

ICYMI, weighted blankets feel like a 15-pound hug—and we already found the best ones to buy. Studies have shown that using a weighted blanket can significantly reduce anxiety symptoms.

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