Anxiety can sometimes feel overwhelming and leave us seemingly helpless. The racing thoughts begin to spiral and we feel even more tense. A practice to try out to help ease your anxiety is repeating a mantra. Mantras are the oldest form of treatment for anxiety, they were around much before we had therapists, psychiatrists, prescription medicine. The earliest recorded mantras were practiced over 3,000 years ago during the Vedic period in India.
What are mantras and why do they help?
They are typically short yet powerful and profound phrases, or could be just one word. When practicing mantras, one steadily repeats the phrase or word over and over. Doing this soothes your mind and body and activates your parasympathetic nervous system. This can be done seated in a comfortable position with your eyes closed. You can also repeat mantras while practicing yoga, walking, or even doing chores or driving.
The word mantra consists of the root man "to think" (and manas "mind") and the suffix -tra “tool.” Mantra translates to “tool of thought,” as it is a means to focus the mind.
Mantras to try out:
I Am Enough
I Am… (add in your own word in accordance with your doubts)
I Can And I Will
Everything I Need is Within Me
Let It Go
I Am At Ease
I Enjoy The Simple Moments
I choose calmness
Reminder that your situation is temporary
This Too Shall Pass
Look How Far I’ve Come
All I Can Do Is My Best
Nothing Lasts Forever
Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu (may all beings everywhere be happy and free)
So Hum (I am)
Samprati Hum (the present moment is my true self)