Everyone gets stressed! It is just part of being human. It is the way that a person handles stress or prevents it that sets people apart from others. I am currently going through (what people tell me) are 2 of the biggest stressors in a person's life, getting married and moving. I have to say, up until recently I was telling everyone they were crazy! I was strutting around having a BLAST planning our wedding and finding a house to buy! And than it hit me...POW! All of the stress came out at once. In-law and parent problems, guest list troubles, paperwork out the wazoo for the house, the fact that a house costs LOADS of money and on and on and on. I thought my head was going to explode at one point!
That is when I had to take a step back out of my head and ask myself, "what is it about these things that are making you stressed? Can you fix it? If not, how are you going to handle it? Are these problems that huge? Or are you making them bigger than they have to be?" I remember sitting on the couch in my office just thinking about these questions over and over and finally I got up, fixed what I could about the stressors and than told myself that the other stressors are out of my control and I can't worry about them.
There are always going to be ups and downs in life, but the key is to not let them ruin your happiness. Put those stressors into God's hands, and brush it off. Life is too short to worry about silly little things because half the time we create a bigger problem in our head than what it really is in real life! Do you agree? We have so much going on in our head that sometimes we need to take a step out of it.
Sometimes sitting in silence and breathing just doesn't work for me, I need other things to distract me and calm my brain and nerves. Here are a list of what I do to help relax my nerves when I feel like I am going to be stressed or I already am.
1. As I said earlier, breathing. Breathing is one of the best practices for stress relief. When you breathe deeply it sends a message to your brain telling it to calm down and relax.
2. Take a walk outside. Science has proven that fresh air and sunlight reduce stress and improve overall mood.
3. Craft or color. It is no coincidence that within the past few years, adult coloring books are everywhere! It can be very meditative, fun and, somewhat, mindless.
4. Yoga or meditation. Yoga is known to reduce stress, anxiety, lower blood pressure, lower your heart rate and much much more!
5. Clean. Cleaning can actually be a form of meditation believe it or not. Also, cleaning provides relief from clutter and, SHOCKER, clutter is very stressful.
6. Journal. Studies have shown that journalling is associated with significant decreases in stress, depression and anxiety.
7. Listen to soothing music. Listening to music can have a relaxing effect on our mind and body, especially slow, relaxing music.
8. Light a lavender scented candle. Lavender is known for its calming and relaxing effects on the body. It has been shown that, cortisol, a stress hormone produced by the body, was shown to have a great reduction in the measured levels within 5 minutes of the patient smelling Lavender. You don't have to just light a lavender scented candle. I, also, use a lavender eye pillow and lavender linen spray for nights that I have trouble sleeping. Keeping a little jar of lavender essential oil is, also, helpful. I keep one in my purse. It helps if you are feeling tense or stressed to rub a small amount on your temples. Or put a few drops in your bath for a nice, soothing lavender bath.
These are just some ways that help me with stress management and relief. I hope they help! Please, feel free to share what stress relief tactics work for you! I would love to hear them!