Journalling can help you clarify your thoughts and feelings, identify anxiety triggers and release strong emotionsLast week I mentioned that anxiety is one of the first – and also one of the most common – symptoms of perimenopause. Many women find their anxiety gets worse as they hit this time of life… which is bad news because anxiety can worsen other perimenopause symptoms like hot flushes.

Fortunately, lifestyle changes help many women manage (if not alleviate) their anxiety. In this week’s newsletter I’ve got a few more simple, sustainable lifestyle tweaks that might help you too:

Get outdoors: Spend time outside every day for a dose of sunshine and fresh air. Aim for at least 15 minutes of early morning or late afternoon sun without sunscreen to stimulate Vitamin D production. You’ll likely need more exposure during winter than summer (and if you have darker skin, which impairs absorption).

Manage anxiety & stress: There are lots of options, so you’re sure to find something that’s right for you, whether that’s yoga, meditation, deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, visualisation, journalling, massage, EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) – and of course exercise and diet.

It’s also worth pausing and taking an honest look at any areas of your life, past or present, that are causing anxiety or distress, and seeking help from a counsellor or psychologist if necessary.

Take time out: Give yourself permission to prioritise regular relaxation breaks and do things that nourish and nurture you. Even small amounts of “me time” make a difference.

I hope some of these tips help you. If not, you may find it helpful to talk with a naturopath, herbalist or integrative medicine GP about natural medicine options. If your symptoms are severe you can also talk with your GP about the pros and cons of hormone therapy (conventional and bioidentical).

Three action points

  1. Set a goal to make ONE change this week; whether that’s a daily walk in the sun, consciously breathing deeply a few times a day, or trying something new like EFT
  2. Don’t try to make too many changes at once! Take small steps and introduce another little tweak when you feel ready
  3. Keep a journal of your perimenopause journey – symptoms, challenges and treatments; you’ll develop a better understanding of your health. Journalling can also help you clarify your thoughts and feelings, identify anxiety triggers and release strong emotions.