Self-care is imperative in our lives that are constantly filled with stimulation. We’re always on our computers, texting and checking notifications on our phones or watching television. We are bombarded with information at every waking moment of our lives and that can take a toll on us mentally and physically. Have you ever finished working on the computer and felt completely drained, like you just ran a mental marathon? Well I have, and those feelings confirm that sometimes we need a break from our electronic devices and just to engage in some old fashioned face to face interactions or take time to do simple things that bring solace. Here are a few tips that can help you when you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed.
Deep Breathing Is Your Friend
One thing that stress makes us do is take shorter, more shallow breaths. This actually sets us up to feel more anxious and on-edge. Take time to do some breathing exercises. Inhale for a count of 4 seconds, hold your breath for 5 seconds and exhale for 6 seconds. This exercise fights your body’s natural fight or flight response and gives the signal that all is well. Try this exercise for a few minutes the next time you need to relax.
Take A Warm Luxurious Bath
I don’t care if it’s the middle of the day. As soon as your body feels the warm water, it will relax. Up the ante with candles, a few drops of lavender essential oil, bubbles and even some soft relaxing music or a calm and encouraging podcast. A 15 minute bath can do wonders for the rest of your day and help you tackle your everyday task with more confidence.
I believe that meditation is one of the most important aspects of being and living in peace. When you learn to quiet your thoughts and only concentrate on breathing or repeating a mantra, you can trigger that same feeling when you encounter a stressful situation or time in your life. Meditation provides your mind the peace it needs to be at its best.
Call A Good Friend
Calling a good friends and telling them how you feel can work wonders and you may even end up laughing by the end of the conversation. You can also opt not to tell them what’s going on and just have a fun and casual conversation that helps you get your mind off of what’s troubling you. After your talk, I’m sure you’ll feel better.
Find A Good Therapist
There’s nothing wrong with going to therapy. It’s sometimes best to let someone help you sort out your feelings, so you can see how what you’re going through is probably not as uncommon as you think. If you’re concerned about sharing issues with friends, then a therapist may be a better option. Do your research though and word of mouth is also a great way to find someone who may be a great fit.
A Scenic Walk
You’d be amazed at how just taking a 15 minute walk can clear your thoughts. Breathing in the fresh air and looking at all the trees and flowers is sure to give you a mental break whenever you need one.
Early To Bed
We really set ourselves up to be snappy and miserable when we don’t get enough rest. I know that when you’re stressed, it makes it harder to get to sleep. Take a bath, do your deep breathing exercises, read a physical book or listen to some relaxing tunes before bedtime to give your body the signal that it’s time to rest. Oh and turn off your cell phone if you can, the bright screen can make it harder for you to get to sleep.
I’d love to hear from you! What preventative measures do you take when you feel stress coming on?