Morning Anxiety: How To Calm It Down & Sip Hot Coffee
A fresh day shall start with good thoughts, being thankful to God for good sleep and planning your day ahead calmly while sipping hot coffee or ginger tea. But many of us are not able to go through the calm process and rather face morning anxiety as soon as the alarm snoozes. If it’s also the case with you, there is no need to worry.
Anxiety is a part of normal life. However, excessive worrying about your tasks which could be done with good planning may cause early morning anxiety. Moreover, the chances of having poor sleep also pitch in that disrupt the routine of a person abruptly.
So what is morning anxiety exactly and how to keep it in balance for healthy living?
Let’s figure it out.
What Is Morning Anxiety?
Morning anxiety is not a medically defined term and it refers to as waking up with a feeling of excessive stress and worry about further planning. This constant worry covers up your routine life and usually continues for at least 6 months. These worries could range from work, money, health and family issues.
The symptoms that make anxiety worse in the morning include:
- Irritable mood
- Restlessness and body fatigue
- Signs of panic attack, increased pulse rate and difficulty in breathing
We understand that morning anxiety is not an easy thing to deal with and one needs to find the coping mechanism.
Why Do You Wake Up Anxious in the Morning?
Upon waking up in the morning, our body’s stress hormone – cortisol – is naturally elevated and tends to increase at least after 30 minutes after you wake up. This is also known as the CAR or cortisol awakening response. If you live with morning anxiety, then an increase in cortisol can be one of the causes of your anxiety upon waking. An increase in cortisol causes increased heart rate, increased blood flow, and heightened adrenaline.
It’s also likely to experience morning anxiety if you go to bed anxious the night before. The higher cortisol levels are when you go to sleep, the higher it’ll be when you wake up and it’ll only increase, making your anxiety worse in the morning.
Other factors such as caffeine and sugar can also play a role in contributing to morning anxiety as high caffeine intake can cause jitters and mimic an anxiety response. Low blood sugar can also worsen your anxiety.
Additional factors that can contribute to morning anxiety can include;
- Life stressors such as moving to a new place, starting a new job, starting school, etc.
- Separation from a loved one or living with grief
- Experiencing mental or physical strain or exhaustion
- Financial or relationship stress
- Poor sleep quality
- Alcohol or substance use
- Physical health issues such as diabetes, asthma, hypertension, depression, etc.
- Other mental health disorders such as GAD, bipolar disorder, depressive disorders, etc.
Tips To Cure Morning Anxiety
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1. Start With Improved Sleeping Habits
If you are going through sleeping problems like migraine, headaches and worries that are the reasons behind insomnia, you are likely to face anxiety the coming morning. Not just psychological but problems like decreased body energy, short term memory and irritability continues. In order to cope with morning anxiety symptoms:
- Avoid watching screens like mobile phones, television, tablets and laptops 1 hour prior to bed. You must even avoid consumption of coffee or alcohol before sleeping.
- Spend time reading good books, listening to your favorite tracks or cuddling with your partner.
- Try following a routine sleep time. For example, if you plan to sleep at 11 tonight, sleep at the same time every night. But make sure you try to complete at least 7 hours of sleep.
2. Identify Stressful Things In The Morning
What are those things that act as a trigger for you every morning? Is it the alarm clock or your schedule for the coming day? If you could identify those triggers and work upon them in advance, you already found the key to cope with morning anxiety. For example, setting a beautiful alarm tone and planning the next day before sleeping could relax you down in advance.
Moreover, it is highly recommended that you plan your small chores like ironing clothes, cutting vegetables for lunch and polishing your shoes the night before. The next morning will begin with a boost of confidence and a lack of anxiety.
3. Relaxation Exercises
You must be clear about your first task every morning and step on the next one by one. Think about the first one and complete it before the next. For example,
- Yoga and deep breathing exercises: They make sure that your body is properly stretched out and oxygen is circulated properly inside your body.
- Visualisation exercises are a great help to make your mind calm and imagine all the things that you want from your life.
- Writing journals with your coffee could not only help you plan the day ahead but remind you of all the good things that you possess at the moment.
- Meditation is another highly effective and recommended activity to keep your mind focused in the present moment and control your emotions well.
4. Consider a Healthy Diet
Various studies indicate a strong connection between diet and anxiety. Those who do not include fruits, vegetables, protein and refined carbohydrates in their diet have higher chances of facing an anxious mood.
Hence, if you begin to add omega-3 fatty acids and foods that reduce anxiety while avoiding excessive caffeine and alcohol, a healthy dietary balance could be achieved and severe morning anxiety could cut down. Although there is no proven fact of this theory, one can definitely try this method to cure morning anxiety.
5. Keep Your Thoughts Positive
Yes, we know that this is the toughest job but if you follow the above methods then the day of positivity is not so far. Although the pattern of negative thoughts may come to rest in a few days, your conscious efforts and mindfulness can surely help. Try to counter-question your every negative thought and ask if you can turn them into positive.
6. Practice Gratitude The First Thing
When you wake up with morning anxiety, it’s important to divert your mind from the stressors and triggers. To do that, you can begin by practicing gratitude first thing in the morning. When you’re too focused on your anxiety, it can be hard to think about other things, including gratitude, but make an effort to list things you’re grateful for. A simple act of thankfulness towards the air you breathe can count as well as your morning cup of tea.
7. Write in a Journal Upon Waking
If you keep waking up with morning anxiety, then it could be time to reflect on your anxious thoughts and stop the negativity spiral. You can do this by keeping a morning journal for your anxiety. Think about a positive alternative to your anxious thought and write it down. Notice how it helps your mind divert from anxious thoughts to a more positive mood. You can also use some anxiety journal prompts to start the practice.
A counselor or therapist can help you with cognitive behavioral therapy which lets you understand your own thoughts, feelings and behavior and turn them into a positive direction. If you cannot visit them in person, team Calmsage helps you in delivering online therapy from your home’s couch only.
There is no need to be now worried about the how’s and why’s of morning anxiety. Start with a good night schedule and control your thoughts for positive outcomes. There is no way that you can’t control the negativity associated with it and calm down morning anxiety symptoms. We are sure you can now make your coffee or tea with a cool mind and sip it looking outside the window.
I hope this blog will help you control your morning anxiety and cope with anxious thoughts in the morning. Let us know what you think about the tips shared in this article in the comments below.