4 Ways to Stop Feeling Stressed When You Apply for Disability

Applying for Social Security disability benefits is often stressful. But waiting months to hear if and when you’ll get those payments? People often tell us that stress feels much worse. Since you cannot work to support yourself, someone else determines your financial future. Stressed people often suffer from high blood pressure, insomnia, and chronic headaches. These issues can actually worsen other symptoms, like stiff muscles, back or neck pain, and acid reflux. Read on for some fast, free and easy ways to stop feeling stressed right now.

4 Fast, Free & Easy Ways To Instantly Feel Better When You’re Stressed

If you’re stressed while waiting for the Social Security Administration to review your claim, it’s important to manage your anxiety. In fact, the right approach can relieve other symptoms, like physical pain Here are four free ways to instantly make yourself feel better when you’re stressed:

1. If you’re too stressed to sleep, listen to this song or watch this video

This music is “scientifically proven” to be the most relaxing song ever. Listening to it can slow down your heart rate, reduce blood pressure, and decrease your cortisol levels. (Cortisol is the hormone your body produces whenever you feel stressed.) And even experts can’t believe how effective it is at making people feel calmer. Research shows it can reduce anxiety as much as 65% in just a few minutes!

2. Pet a dog (or ask a friend if you don’t have your own to cuddle)!

Petting a dog is another proven way to stop your body from producing the stress hormone cortisol quickly. But petting a dog doesn’t just help you stop feeling so stressed. It can also increase how much oxytocin your brain makes, too. This brain chemical famously makes people feel calm, loved and relaxed. If you don’t have a dog already, visit someone who does or consider adopting a rescue. There are multiple health benefits to dog companionship: It can reduce hypertension symptoms and improve your cardiovascular health. If you’re not in a position to have your own pet, then offer to walk a friend’s dog or visit your local shelter. You’re sure to leave in a better mood.

3. Close your eyes and take some slow, deep breaths

There’s a reason people always say “take a deep breath” whenever you’re stressed. It actually works! Take just five minutes to inhale deeply and exhale slowly with your eyes closed. (Bonus points if you put your hand on your abdomen and feel it expand and deflate with every breath.) Psychologist Judith Tutin, Ph.D. says, “deep breathing counters the effects of stress by slowing the heart rate and lowering blood pressure.” Best of all, it takes only five minutes to feel much better. Not sure how to control your breathing and start feeling better fast? Let this animated image guide your breathing to reduce anxiety. Breathe in and out as the image guides you for some quick stress relief.

4. Hug someone

Positive touch, like a hug, can transform your mood and health almost instantly for the better. Much like the benefits you get from petting a beloved dog, hugging someone makes your brain release oxytocin. But hugs don’t just stop from feeling so stressed. Oxytocin from a hug can ease physical as well as emotional pain and even make you feel less lonely.

Many people call oxytocin the “cuddle hormone,” since touching your loved ones makes your brain produce it. “Your biologic response is nudging you to tell someone how you feel instead of bottling it up,” says researcher Kelly McGonigal. “When life is difficult, your stress response wants you to be surrounded by people who care about you.”

And if you have more serious concerns about your SSD claim, consider talking to a professional. A disability lawyer can help you file an error-free application so you’ll feel less stressed. An attorney can give you all the support you’ll need through the waiting period and appeals process, if necessary. According to the SSA, about 40% of claimants get denied for making basic application errors. Having an attorney also triples your chances for benefit approval the first time you apply. Those who qualify for legal assistance through this website usually get $12,000 in lump-sum back payments plus monthly SSD.

Stressed about paying for a lawyer? All disability lawyers work on contingency, so you pay nothing unless you win benefits. And if you do win, then you’ll only pay a small, one-time fee.

Ready to see if you may qualify? Click the button below to start your free benefits evaluation online now!

Get Your Free Benefits Evaluation

Mandy Voisin is a freelance writer, blogger, and author of Girls of the Ocean and Star of Deliverance. As an accomplished content marketing consultant, mom of four and doctor's wife, Mandy has written hundreds of articles about dangerous drugs and medical devices, medical issues that impact disabled Americans, veterans' healthcare and workers' compensation issues since 2016.