Thirteen Easy Techniques to Relieve Stress Effortlessly

Thirteen Easy Techniques to Relieve Stress Effortlessly

After a particularly demanding day, our body may already trigger the flight or flight response, which causes our blood pressure to rise, our hearts to beat faster and our adrenaline to start pumping. We should be aware of long term exposure to stress riggers that can cause various health problems, such as poor memory retention, lack of concentration, weight gain, heart disease, depression and anxiety. Having this kind of condition won’t be relaxing. There are situations where a cup of chamomile tea just doesn’t do the trick.
1. Sleep and wake up early: When we are affected with stress, we shouldn’t deprive ourselves of sleep. In general, going to bed and then wake up one hour earlier could leave us feeling less frazzled and more refreshed. We could take the extra time to center ourselves. It is also possible to take a bath, prepare breakfast and do the rest of the morning routines in a much slower pace. During the extra time, we could read something inspirational and this simple activity we could better cope with the normal crazy daily activities.
2. Create soothing living and working places: It should be noted that red and other warm colors may easily excite us, while muted colors like grey, green and blue could relax us. We should surround ourselves in any kind of color that we find soothing, so we will feel calmer. It is generally believed that when we see colours that we consider soothing, the subtle message will be delivered along our nerve pathways to an area of the brain that controls emotion. There should be many ways to surround ourselves with favorable colours to ease symptoms of stress. At the office, we could put soothing-colored scarves around specific objects and at home, paint some of the walls. We could also change the screensaver of our computer with calming pictures.
3. Clean out our junk drawers: When we feel emotionally drained, chances are we will drink alcoholic drinks and do other negative things. The truth is, doing chores at home could also distract our mind from stressful thoughts. According to studies, making ourselves busy with de-cluttering tasks can easily manage stress. In this case, we could get rid of unused items, so we will have a sense of order to our surrounding. We will feel calmer about our stresses. In this situation, we could start with smaller projects such as cleaning the kitchen junk. Visible and tangible order in our home could lead to emotional organizations.
4. Our wife may cook a rather distasteful meal tonight and a co-worker may have just “backstabbed” us at the office. However, regardless of the situation, we should perform a kind of visual mindfulness meditation. This could sweep out things that buzz unhelpfully in our head. We could imagine our stressful thoughts like the drifting clouds in the sky. We could see the clouds thinning, become lighter in color and eventually dispersing completely. This simple exercise could make our negative thoughts become less emotionally powerful.
5. Watch funny videos: There are many funny videos on YouTube and other video sharing websites. They could relieve some tension, especially after a stressful day. Funny objects could activate parts of the brain that delivers calm physiological responses and tranquility. This will reduce stress tremendously and decrease anxiety.
6. Sing loudly: When we feel strung out, it is a good idea to sing loudly. Sound reverberates throughout our body and keeps our mind relaxed. Whether chanting “Ommm” meditatively or singing our favorite pop songs, they can help calm and distract our mind.
7. Write a scrapbook: Coloured construction paper and stickers may seem so kindergarten, but they could get us in touch with our crafty sides. Writing a scrapbook could offer some psychological benefits and we should think of it as an adult playtime. Scrapbooking improves our concentration and focus. This activity could divert us away from difficult and stressful thoughts. We could also better understand our feeling towards people we are scrapbooking about. There are tactile elements of scrapbooking, such as cutting, pasting positioning, which are very relaxing to do.
8. Pick up exciting physical hobbies: For some people, scrapbooking isn’t really their thing. In this case, they could find other activities that could occupy their time, as long as they could prevent their mind from getting flooded by negative thoughts. Whatever we do, we should try to stop the stress spiral and refocus our mind on more productive and positive thoughts. As an example, gardening allows us to focus on the growth of our plants. We watch them grow everyday and we expect to see them bear fruits for the first time. The feeling of the soil in our hand would be a favorable change to computers and papers that we touch every day at the office. Knitting concentrates our thought on the yarn and we can be distracted by the patterns and the loops of the yarn. We should channel our mental energy into something more useful. Our mind could be more relaxed if we could eliminate all those distracting stresses.
9. Clench our muscles and then release: This is an old technique that’s recommended by many experts. Progressive muscle relaxation could be achieved by creating muscle tension and then releasing it. This would provide physical relief, because a relaxed body could lead to a relaxed mind. We could start by choosing a more comfortable position, like lying down. It is also important to wear loose, comfortable clothing. We could tense and relax each of our muscle group one at a time. As example, we could clench our right arm muscles for five seconds and then release them. Then we could do the same with the left arm, toes, feet, thigh, hips, stomach, back, shoulders, lips, eyes and forehead. We should evaluate whether tension still remains after we complete the sequence. Identify the precise location where we still feel the tension. We could repeat the tightening and releasing procedure for four or five times.
10. Take a few deep breaths: We could do this in many different places, whether we are waiting to pick up our children or when we check out in the supermarket. We could breathe deeply for one minute through our nose and then into our abdomen. To help cue deeper breathing, we could rest our hands over our abdomen or lower ribcage. Breathing fully and deeply can help us develop a sense of calmness, because more oxygen is transported to our body cells. People who are proficient with this technique could quickly reach the relaxation response condition, by activating the parasympathetic nervous system that can calm our body.
11. Make some mental “Thank You” Notes: This technique could become a type of cognitive behavioural therapy. Before stress could get worse, it is important to learn to control our thoughts. As an example, we may notice tensions in our body and this is a good time to mentally focus on everything we are grateful for. We should look around on things that are pleasant and beautiful around us. We could make a gratitude list each day, for things that we recently get. We could do this exercise when things get a little bit hectic.
12. Feel our pressure points: Sometimes, we feel like we are going to explode when we are stuck in traffic. Perhaps, we could try to implement the pressure-point therapy, which is somewhat similar to acupressure. There are specific pressure points in our body that can promote blood circulation and release muscular tensions. Third Eye Point should be the easiest to start. This is the space between eyebrows and the spot where our forehead meets the bridge of our nose.
13. Smell good things: Scent therapy is known for its many benefits. People who have breathed the smell of the mountains or sniffed a bouquet of flowers often feel a state of relaxation. In this case, we could add a few drops of our preferred scent during a relaxing bath. Once inhaled, these scents could alter our moods and stimulate specific regions of our brain that are associated with emotions. These scents could remind us of nature. Smells like fresh rain and salt water on the beach can be particularly calming, because we feel disconnected from typical stresses.

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