Those who don’t suffer from anxiety don’t always realize how much it can derail your life. If you have a friend with anxiety who has canceled plans at the last minute due to an episode, try not to judge her. Her anxiety took over her brain and body and she really wasn’t herself. If you’ve ever been with someone while they were having an anxiety attack, you could probably see that they were not themselves. They were not thinking clearly. They were talking about being fearful of things that, to you, clearly wouldn’t happen. When anxiety kicks in, rationale goes out the window. But it’s not the anxious individual’s fault. If you are in a relationship with someone who suffers from anxiety, you’d be an amazing partner if you learned how to help. Here are quick tips to relax somebody with anxiety.

Petting an animal

Making another living being feel loved is incredibly relaxing. Just looking into the eyes of a dog—a creature who doesn’t know about ego or bills or careers—can really pull you away from your anxieties.

Going for a drive

It helps babies sleep, creatives come up with new ideas, and anxious individuals relax. If your partner is having anxiety and says he cannot drive, put him in the passenger seat and take him on a quiet road for a ride.

Lying on the floor

There is something about lying on the floor that is incredibly grounding—not just in the literal sense. Feeling the ground beneath you and how solid and stable it is can make your mind feel more solid and stable, too.

Touching something textured

Pleasurable stimuli can relieve anxiety, too. So whether that’s a stress ball or a really furry blanket, just running one’s hand over the textured item and focusing on the sensation can be relaxing.

The sound of water

The sound of water has incredibly soothing properties. If you don’t have a small fountain in your home, you can just play a soundtrack on iTunes that has the sounds of the ocean or a bubbling brook.

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