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How to use the 333 rule for anxiety

At any one time, there are around eight million people in the UK experiencing some form of anxiety disorder.

This can range from a panic disorder, to social anxiety, to post-traumatic stress, and phobias such as claustrophobia or agoraphobia.

According to the NHS, while most people experience feelings of anxiety at one point or another, some find it harder to control their worries and feelings of anxiety have a more constant effect on their daily lives.

A 2014 study from YouGov found that one in five people who experience anxiety have no coping mechanisms to help them through it.

While the health service suggests treatments such as therapy or antidepressant medicines, there are other things you can do to help manage those feelings.

One of these methods is known as the ‚Äú333 rule‚ÄĚ. According to Healthline, the 333 rule is an informal technique for coping with anxiety.

It can help to keep you grounded and ‚Äúcalm down in a moment where you are feeling particularly anxious or overwhelmed‚ÄĚ.

The 333 rule consists of three factors. When you’re feeling anxious, you’ll need to look around your current environment and:

  • Name three things you see
  • Identify three sounds you hear
  • Move three things, such as your arms or legs, or touch three things such as an object

A recent TikTok video posted by mental health membership club Mind Bar said: ‚ÄúPracticing this method is an easy tool to bring you back to the present moment.‚ÄĚ

While there have been no scientific studies into the effectiveness of the 333 rule, it can be a helpful aid to manage anxiety.

Other ways to help reduce feeling of anxiety, according to the NHS, include going on a self-help course, exercising regularly, stopping smoking, and cutting down on the amount of alcohol you consume.

If anxiety is affecting your daily life, you can call the Anxiety UK helpline on 03444 775 774.

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