Are you easily stressed out? Do you get anxious often? I do, way more often than I probably should. However, I have found that if I intentionally reduce stress every day, I am ready to recharge and move on with my week. Here are some of my favorite easy ways to reduce stress.
Step away from all electronics.
First and foremost, you need to step away from electronics. This is the time you focus on yourself. Switch your phone to silent mode (or better, airplane mode), and put it away where you can’t see or hear it. Turn off your brain for a minute, and breathe. Isn’t it nice not having to worry about whatever it is on your phone or computer?
Enjoy a nice homemade meal.
There’s much to say about homemade meals. I always find comfort in freshly made food. Also, I know that it’s better for my body, so this gives me extra comfort. You don’t need to go overboard if you don’t want to. Often times, I enjoy a nice bowl of customized ramen. I throw in extra seasonings, a couple of eggs and slices of toast. Topped off with my favorite wine, I am a happy camper. Make sure to drink lots of water to rehydrate.
Read something you can hold in your hand.
In my past life, I had over 200 books on my bookshelf. After moving so much, I’ve had to give them away and resort to Kindle books for the most part. I still enjoy reading on the Kindle, but holding a nice solid book in my hand – there is no replacement for that feeling. Other than giving your eyes a rest from electronic screens, reading a physical book will give your brain a little break from this world and our reality. Take a trip anywhere you want to go, without ever leaving your home.
I am all for pamper evenings, but I enjoy a shorter version for every day. Light a candle (or wax lamp) for this part. Brush your teeth, floss, and do it well. Remove your makeup and cleanse thoroughly by massaging your face gently with your hands.
Afterwards, jump into the shower and cleanse your body. Wash away everything from the entire day. When I’m in the shower, I reflect on the things I could’ve/should’ve done/said. As you rinse, rinse away all negative thoughts and feelings. Let it all go down the drain. Don’t leave the shower until you’ve cleared your mind.
Next, moisturize your face and massage away the stress once again. Follow with a nice body massage. Go slowly, and enjoy the moment. Inhale the fresh scent of cleanliness and renewal. Go back to reading your book or planning your day. I enjoy planning my days and weeks. There’s always a sense of accomplishment when I’ve followed through on my plans.
Time for bed.
After your hair has dried, set your alarms and tuck yourself in. Spend a few minutes meditating on positive thoughts. I like to take this time to pray and reflect on the people and things I am thankful for. When I finish, I usually end up falling asleep soon after. Now, I’m ready for the new day before me.
Notice how we don’t have our phones? That’s how it should be. Nothing is so important that it interferes with taking care of ourselves. Put yourself first. You deserve it.
If you have trouble falling asleep, my favorite app is Sleep Pillow. You can set up comforting sounds to help you fall asleep. I like a mixture of a crackling fireplace, raindrops falling, and windy prairies. For some reason, these sounds put together brings so much comfort and ease to my mind.
What are some of your favorite ways to reduce stress?
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