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Feeling Restless? How to Overcome Nervousness

Nervous Woman
Photo: CC0 / Pixabay / Khusen Rustamov

Persistent inner restlessness or nervousness? The reasons for feeling restless can be very different – but just a few simple tips can help you to become calmer and more relaxed again.

What Are the Signs of Inner Restlessness?

You’re irritable, get flustered easily, and even little things upset you? Do the people around feel your restlessness, imbalance, and moodiness? Are you permanently feeling tense, sleeping badly, and having trouble concentrating?

Anxiety, an elevated heart beat, or sweating can also be signs of nervousness. It is important that you recognize these signs – don’t ignore them! The first step is always to observe yourself: How often – and how intensely – do you have these symptoms? In which situations do they occur regularly? What might some possible causes be?

In some cases, simple home remedies or relaxation techniques can help you manage inner restlessness. However, if you think you have a more serious illness, you should always get medical advice.

What Causes Restlessness and Anxiety?

Stress Nervousness
There can be any number of reasons for feeling restless or nervous. (Photo: CC0 / Pixabay / Andreas 160578)

Inner restlessness and feelings of nervousness can be caused by external, environmental influences. Others are of internal physical or psychological origin. Often the circumstances are closely connected.

Physically, for example, the following symptoms can leave you feeling restless:

  • High blood pressure – or low blood pressure
  • An overactive thyroid gland
  • Sunstroke or heat stroke
  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
  • Nutritional deficiencies such as insufficient calcium
  • Menopause,
  • In the worst case scenarios, a pulmonary embolism or a heart attack
  • However, depression or anxiety disorders can also be a cause of inner restlessness.

If the inner restlessness or nervousness is caused by one of these factors, home remedies or relaxation exercises will not be sufficient. You should consult a doctor if you suspect these causes.

Of course, it’s different if the reasons for your restlessness are circumstantial or environmental. This includes feeling nervous in the following situations:

  • Before exams
  • During periods of everyday stress (Of course, it helps to reduce stress in general)
  • When you consume too much caffeine
  • Due to a physical imbalance caused by too little exercise
  • Abuse of alcohol or drugs
  • Due to the side-effects of medication, or after discontinuing medication

Nervousness – Occasional, Regular, or Continual?

Do you feel restless only in specific situations – or is your nervousness seemingly without cause? How regularly do you feel restless? Also consider your eating habits: Simply getting enough to eat and drink, and a balanced diet in general, can have a huge effect.

Which physical symptoms are particularly pronounced? Take a moment to reflect on things which may accompany or be potential causes of this sensation. Nervousness before exams and important conversations is quite normal – in fact, it may even help you to concentrate better. It’s different with nervousness which troubles you all the time. Then, you should seek the advice of a doctor.

Tip: Wake Forest University has a helpful visual guide to help identify and cope with morning anxiety.

Emergency Tips and Home Remedies

Relaxing Tea
Something as simple as a cup of tea can often help calm our nerves. (Photo: CC0 / Pixabay / Miriams Fotos)

There are a few simple ways of dealing with nervousness and restlessness that can help you to calm down and relax. These include short relaxation exercises, but also these traditional remedies:

  • Relaxing teas with lavender or lemon balm (like this one on**)
  • Herbal preparations with valerian, St. John’s wort, hops, or passion flower. Homeopathy also offers some remedies for relaxation; it’s best to consult a doctor or pharmacist for further advice
  • A nice glass of organic buttermilk
  • Beautiful music, or simply laughter, can have a relaxing effect too

The following exercises can also help you to relax:

  • Close your eyes and concentrate on your breathing: Count your breaths as you slowly breathe in and out.
  • Tense your muscles for five seconds, until you feel a slight sensation of tension. Then relax them again, and for about ten seconds enjoy the feeling of the tension releasing. It’s best to repeat the exercise several times.

Longer-term Help for Nervousness

To give you more peace of mind in the long run, here are a few simple tricks you can follow:

  • To prevent low blood pressure and hypoglycemia, make sure you eat a healthy, balanced diet. Breakfast is an especially important meal. Take the time to look after yourself!
  • Try not to overdo it with caffeine. Make coffee a luxury again, instead of an everyday habit. (If you want to quit coffee altogether, we can help you there too!)
  • Do relaxation exercises: Learn to be in the moment with mindfulness, or practice hatha yoga. Progressive muscle relaxation also helps you to relax and fight nervousness.
  • Don’t forget your body if you spend a lot of time sitting at a desk. Make sure you get enough real exercise. There are lots of benefits to a morning workout!
  • Work on your attitude to life: Accept yourself as you are, and don’t expect more and more from yourself. Try not to compare yourself with others too much.
  • Saunas, baths, or massages all have a relaxing effect on your body.
  • Take a walk in nature, and make sure that your night time sleep routine gives your body time and peace to regenerate.

When Should I Ask for Help?

Help Advice
It’s just as important to be able to accept help as it is to know how to care for yourself. (Photo: CC0 / Unsplash / Matheus Ferrero)

If you can’t establish the causes for your inner restlessness yourself, or the situation continues for a longer period of time, you should ask a doctor for help. You should also consult a doctor if you have other symptoms besides restlessness. This may include back pain, stomach pain, persistent headaches, or heart arrhythmia.

In cases where you start to feel inhibited by your nervousness, mental imbalance, and restlessness, you should seek professional advice. It’s important to know how to look after ourselves – but also when to accept help from other people.

This article was translated from German by Will Tayler. You can read the original here: Innere Unruhe: Wo Nervosität herkommt und wie du sie bekämpfst

Important Information regarding Health-related Topics.

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