Here's your short cut to less stress!
Looking for quick and easy fixes to reduce daily stress? Here’s a list of ten little things that take under ten minutes each to get stress-free!
Song and Dance - Sounds silly? But there is something that just loosens you up when you exercise those vocal chords and the rest of your body in a sing-along and/or dance-along to your favourite peppy tune of the moment.
Touch - Take stress busting into your own hands - massage the areas between your thumb and index finger of one hand with the thumb and index finger of your other hand to help release the stress you hold in areas like your shoulders, neck and head. Similarly buy a couple of small golf balls and run your feet over them for an instant DIY foot massage that will lift your mood as well.
Oxygenate - Just Breathe! We rush through our stressed out days hardly taking in a single deep breath and the reduced quantity and quality of oxygen leaves us running on less than optimal functioning.
Pray or Play - Prayer is known for its positive and calming effect. Even if you're not a particularly spiritual person and have eschewed faith for reason/science then why not practice meditation and mindfulness just to harness and focus your mind. Or engage your mind in play with a crossword, puzzle or mental game of some sort (or even just slowly counting backwards from 10 - just try worrying about anything else when you're still trying to remember what number comes before 6 to realise how effective this can be).
Sleep - perchance to dream. Power naps / a quick bout of yog nidra/just closing your eyes to indulge in a happy daydream are sure to give you a fresh burst of energy.
Tickle the Senses - Use your senses - smells (coffee, orange, lavender etc.), sights (the relaxing effect of the colour green, looking at funny videos of babies or cats), sounds (a hum, chant, ambient soothing music, etc.,), touch (squeeze a squeezey toy), and tastes (grabbing a quick yummy bite) - to help squash stress.
Refresh - Just a quick brisk walk to the restroom to splash cold water on your face can be refreshing. Speaking of splashing water, the area of your wrists and behind the earlobes etc. where some major arteries lie just below and closer to the skin are also known to have a calming effect when you drip cold water on them and cool these areas.
Express - Grab a pen and paper and write down whatever is your biggest stressor at the moment. Seeing it out on a page can make it less intimidating. Call your mum or a friend and just talk through the feelings that are creeping up and you could start seeing things in a more positive light.
Smile - Just the act of smiling (even when you don't really have a reason to smile/don't feel like it) starts a reaction to release happy hormones and cheer you up. Better still, laugh! Those laughter clubs may seem absurd but they're definitely onto something!
Stretch - Take a few minutes to stand up, step away from what you're doing, and do a few simple stretches or exercises that can be done at your desk. Moving about gets your circulation going and helps you take a much needed break before you get back to tackling the tough stuff.