3 Tips To Becoming A De-Stress Expert
1. Know Your Triggers. What happens when you see that certain name pop up on your phone or when your family springs a surprise last-minute visit on you? Does your heart begin to race? Do you feel your breath speed up? Does your mind race with thoughts like, “God–why me?!” These can all be signs that something is triggering stress within you. If Sunday night is the worst night ever and not just because everyone hates Monday–but if the idea of going to work fills you with terror and gives you a headache–your job may be triggering stress. Figure out what those triggers are and then you can fight them.
2. Have A Plan. What are some things you can do no matter where you are, how much money you have, and who you’re with if one of these triggers pops up? The go-to is: breathing. While yoga is a fab de-stressor it may not be a viable option when you’re at your desk and that dreaded coworker is piling more work onto your plate. Breathing is free and can be done any time and anywhere. Dr. Weil has some great breathing exercises you can do here. There are many others that incorporate plugging your nose with your fingers and breathing out one nostril, and doing other more yogic breathing.
3. Find What Works For You. There’s really no right or wrong answer to what may de-stress you (except maybe those more illicit and addictive things.) If it’s a nice walk with your dog after a long day or a vent session with your best friend–find out what works. Try different things until you notice your heart rate slows down, your breathing is easier, and your mind is less chaotic. Once you find your go-to de-stressor it’ll be much easier to get back to that peaceful place after your mother-in-law calls to complain. Maybe it’s different for every situation. Sometimes breathing will help at work but not when your children are screaming at you at home. Maybe then in that situation it’s time for a “dance break” where everyone can get out their energy to some Beyoncé for a few minutes. For some it’s yoga, for others it’s cooking for the family. Sometimes it’s a bath with candles, and sometimes it’s making little voodoo dolls of your least favorite people. Whatever works for you–just find it and do it.
Some people live with stress daily without realizing they can help ease it. Unclench your teeth, take a deep breath, and maybe stop in for a soak as well.