Monday, November 11, 2013

10 Tips to Stress Less

I am by no means an expert on this subject; in fact, I'm more of an expert at letting stress overwhelm and eat away at me until I lash out. Healthy? I'm guessing no. However, I stumbled upon a few different ideas for stress reduction as I entered into my weekly "Sunday Funk", a term Adam and I use to describe that dreaded, uneasy Monday Eve feeling, and the ideas resonated with me as small things I could do (read: attempt) to lower my overall anxiety levels. I'm not going to go all Namaste here, and I definitely am not pushing exercise, but rather just sharing some simple ideas that resonated with me as doable and constructive.
  1. Have a backup stash of cash in the house. You never know when you'll need it, or why, and you'll be so happy you have it in that clutch moment.
  2. Keep stamps on hand. Same idea, but who doesn't panic when you need them and don't have them?
  3. Treat your gas tank as if 1/4 tank is empty. This is a tip from my dad, ages ago, that I've always remembered (but don't do a great job of following).
  4. Take a minute each time you have a hot beverage, to remove the lid, and take a deep breath of the hot aroma. Studies actually show this helps, plus it just feels awesome.
  5. Keep your keys in the same exact place, every day. I know, it's a no-brainer, but almost no one successfully does this, and it always comes back to bite you. Always.
  6. Take a break to follow some of these full-body stretching exercises. This quick routine can be done easily before work, or even during lunch, and goes a long way toward feeling calm.
  7. Hug a pet. We've all heard that pet owners have lower stress and blood pressure, but we don't always take advantage of that fact. If you have a pet, spend just 5 minutes of your day (at least!) doing nothing but cuddling them. If you don't, then give that eager dog walking by a big old rub on the head.
  8. Immediately when you get home from work, sit on the couch and close your eyes for just a few moments. No TV, no cell phone, just sitting; I promise, it feels really good, and you do have the time.
  9. Lay your clothes out for work the night before. This means everything: outfit, underwear, a bra that actually works with that shirt, shoes, and especially a hair tie and bobby pins if you use them regularly.
  10. When all else fails, head to this Buzzfeed, which will make you smile every time.

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