3. Make decisions
“You can turn a tendency toward a downward spiral of depression and anxiety into an upward spiral of joy and clarity in your life.” ― Alex Korb,
If you always feel like you’ve only got more and more work to do, you will never be able to stop being anxious. Sometimes just deciding on one particular can make you feel less anxious than letting yourself worry over all the possible end results over and over. According to Korb, deciding on something gives you purpose and aims to fulfill.
These three functions all fall under the same neural circuit and ensure that the prefrontal cortex is less affected by negative emotions like anxiety and stress. When you decide on something, you will also feel like you are in charge of your own situation. Loss of control can make you feel more helpless and anxious. It’s also great when you’ve decided on something and that works out well.
If you keep putting off the process of making important choices for a later time, the shadow of that pending task will keep hanging over you at all times. Often it makes you even more hesitant than you were.
4. Physical contact with those you care about
It is well known that interacting with others can make a person feel more accepted and lead to greater feelings of happiness. The Upward Spiral also advocates for more physical contact between people. More oxytocin is released when we physically touch someone else.
Also called the ‘love hormone’, according to Psychology Today, Oxytocin controls the way we interact with each other as well as playing a major role in sex and reproduction. It regulates activities like creating the bond between the mother and child, lactation, orgasms and more.
We’ve all turned to physical contact when we needed comfort at some point or the other. Sometimes there is nothing like a warm hug from someone you care about to make you feel better. When we make physical contact with another person through a caress, a hug or a kiss, the brain is stimulated into producing more oxytocin.
It is also the hormone which makes us trust the people we are close to. It is like the cure for depression. Korb says that just holding on to someone’s hand when we are experiencing something difficult can be very comforting and ensure that your brain feels the impact of the pain less. Hence it is important to give out hugs when you can.
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