New York City is famously known as the city that never sleeps. The very same aspects that make New York City, namely Manhattan, one of the most important metropolitan areas in the world, also makes it a place that can be anxiety provoking. Forbes rates New York City as the second most stressful city in the country due to having the highest cost of living, the most extreme population density and the least affordable housing stock (number one on the list is L.A., due to its higher unemployment rate). The fast pace of the city can be exciting but it can also add intense pressure to a person’s everyday life. Here are 5 Tips for Controlling Anxiety While Living in NYC:
1. Find a Quiet Spot
Take a moment for yourself during the day or the week and find a quiet place. Whether it be an off hours restaurant, park bench or some window shopping, a few minutes of “you time” can be great way to stop, reflect and get your thoughts organized. For someone overwhelmed by anxiety this can be a crucial moment to take a break before tackling the rest of the day’s tasks.
2. Get outdoors
Working long hours can mean lots of time in doors. If you take the subway to work it can mean that most of your time is spent indoors and underground, especially in the winter. A breath of fresh air in your lungs can clear your mind and shake the weighty feelings of anxiety. Getting outdoors can be as simple as walking to work or having lunch in a park instead of at the office. Being near water can also be relaxing, so taking a walk by the river or stopping by the pond in Central Park can also be a great way to take a break from everyday stresses.
3. Turn off the noise
For many New Yorker, commuting causes anxiety and stress. Traffic, construction, street noise, and/or a crammed subway car can all be triggers for heightened anxiety. While turning off the noise by listening to music, or a podcast on your route can be helpful, try an audio-guided meditation. It’s said that even 10 minutes of meditation a day can be helpful in reducing anxiety. Turn your commute into an opportunity to shut out the noise and relax your mind.
4. Grab a good bite
Doctors have been saying it for years; breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Starting off with a proper meal can prevent you from low blood sugar and weariness. Although living and working in NYC often means grabbing food and drinks on the go, try to making that “to go” meal a substantial one. This can help reduce mood swings and a higher level of anxiety throughout the day.
5. Get moving
Break your routine by getting moving. Whether it be a yoga class or a spinning class or even a walk through the park, getting your blood moving and endorphins flowing can be a crucial part of fighting anxiety in the city. Many people eat lunch at their desk and use their lunch break hour to hop over to the gym. If that’s not convenient, even a quick walk can make the difference in terms of lowering stress and anxiety.
Don’t let anxiety affect your life in the Big Apple. For more information about anxiety visit our page:. If you’d like to talk to someone about taking further steps to manage your anxiety contact Dr. Fieve, an expert in the field of psychiatry: www.fieve.com/ronald-r-fieve-md