Here are the best relaxation techniques for when you feel stressed out
Feeling stressed out? Need to relax? We have got plenty of chilled ideas for you! Sit back, cool the wine, and read on…
Stress management is probably still a new thing. Fifty years or so ago, our grandmothers probably didn’t even know what stress was, let alone how to manage it! Is stress a new invention? No. Stress is simply a symptom of the way we live our lives. We’re all busy, we all do too much, and many of us simply don’t know when to stop and take a break.
In 2017, it seems almost impossible to avoid stress. It’s there when you return home from a 12 hour day at work and realise you still haven’t cleaned your house, and it’s there when you’ve got a week off work but still have a to-do list as long as your arm.
For those of us who can’t avoid stress, the next best thing to do is to make sure stress doesn’t turn into full-on stressed-out. But when it does, it’s time to relax. So let’s cut to the chase and take a look at a few relaxation techniques for you to try.
Like stress management, meditation is a word that probably sounds a bit too new-age for our grandmothers. But meditation isn’t as new-age – or as wacky – as it sounds. And it’s definitely not just for spiritualists. Meditation is for anyone who wants to cleanse their mind of clutter and feel relaxed once again.
It’s really easy to do, too. You don’t need any stones or oils – you just need a quiet room, preferably with a view. It’s all about creating awareness. Sit yourself down, listen to your breathing. Look out of the window, repeat a mantra, and try to purge your mind of messy thoughts. The reason many of us are stressed is that we’re constantly thinking about stuff: “I still have to do this and I still have to do that.” Meditation clears these anxiety-inducing thoughts from your mind and helps you to live in the moment, peacefully at one with your surroundings.
2. Write down what went right today
Whenever we’re stressed, it’s suddenly really easy for us to focus on all the bad stuff that’s happening to us. The good stuff? That all gets forgotten about. For this reason, one of good tips on how to relieve stress is to buy yourself a journal and make notes of all the small victories you claimed each day. Small victories could be anything, from an amazing coffee during your dinner break, to a smile from a cute guy at a bar. Magnify these small victories. Give them a pedestal. Make them just as much a part of your story as the things that are stressing you out. And who cares how small they are? Make them big! Revel in them. The more you do this, the more you’ll realise that life isn’t so bad after all.
3. Be mindful
Mindfulness is similar to meditation, but not exactly the same. You can try both, or just one of them. It’s up to you. We really recommend mindfulness because, like meditation, it seeks to prevent your imagination from running away from you. It locks you into the present moment, so that you appreciate the small miracles going on around you, from the songs of the bluebirds to the azure colour of the sky. Mindfulness refreshens you, mind, body and soul.
4. Have some fun
Having fun is one of the best tips on how to relieve stress. Some of us have grown up and stopped having fun. We’ve taken life too seriously. We’ve got ourselves a serious job, we work seriously long hours, and we’ve forgotten to let out hair down. While drinking cocktails at the weekend is one thing, you should find other ways to have some fun. Use your imagination and get creative. Play frisbee on the beach. Take a spontaneous, unplanned train ride to anywhere. Go and hang with your friends’ kids. Let loose!
5. Listen to happy music
Another great tip on how to relieve stress is to listen to good music. Music – like certain smells – has an uncanny way of getting into our psyche so that whenever we hear it, it evokes the emotions we felt when we first heard it. Take songs you enjoyed during your childhood for example. If there were certain songs you listened to all the time when you were a kid, you can bet your bottom dollar that if you were to listen to them now you’d be transported back to those time. You’ll feel those emotions, and remember those memories.
Music can have an amazing, transformative effect on the listener. If you’re feeling stressed out, listen to songs that you know make you happy. Let them transport you back to happier times when you weren’t as stressed.
6. Hang out with nature
Stuck in an office all day long? Live in a heavily polluted, smog-ridden city? Kept awake at night by taxi’s honking and drunks singing? Maybe it’s time to head out to nature, because it’s one of amazing tips on how to relieve stress. Seriously, it will relax you like nothing else. Take some food and drink and have a picnic. Take some music and just chill out with the birds and the trees. Appreciate that you can do this. Soak up the different smells of the plants. Engage yourself with your surroundings and notice how it makes you feel.
7. Work out
Working out is perhaps the best stress-buster, yet it’s one that a lot of people ignore. This is probably because not all of us enjoy working out. However, exercise is not only good for your mind – it’s also good for your body and overall health. If you’ve got a lot on your mind at the moment, sweat it out. You’ll be amazed by how relaxed and refreshed you feel after a work out session.
8. Take a bath
Lastly, when all else fails, you could just try the classic relaxation technique – a good, hour-long soak in the bath! Get the candles out, the bath-bombs, the bubbles and the wine, and chill out for as long as you like. Leave your phone in another room. It’s just you, the water and the wine.
What are your best tips on how to relieve stress?