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Why is it that the busier we are, the worse we treat ourselves? When life gets crazy, that’s when we are most in need of some TLC—and that’s exactly when we are least likely to give it to ourselves!
At Writer’s Relief, we know a little something about happy writers, so we’ve compiled a few quick and easy stress-busters to help you survive the hectic holidays and other busy times!
- Try RE-LAX: Take a slow, deep breath in and think “RE”; then a long, slow exhale on “LAX.” Repeat several times.
- If you’re spending long hours at the computer, take a moment to look up, focus on a horizon or a faraway vista, and give your eyes a break every fifteen minutes or so.
- Take a short walk around the block or sprint up and down some stairs for a quick pick-me-up. Exercise of any kind wards off tension!
- Focus on something else for a few minutes—like a short meditation on something beautiful: a beautiful flower, the sound of the birds outside, etc. Or look up a work of art you’ve never really paid attention to and take a few minutes to truly absorb it.
- Do the energy shake! Stand up, reach your arms to the ceiling, then drop your hands to your sides. Shake each hand separately, then each foot separately; rotate your head and take two deep breaths.
- Did you know laughter smooths out the autonomic nervous system and allows the heart to relax? Find something funny: favorite cartoons, humorous websites, or laugh-inducing memes—or watch a video of a tiny hedgehog enjoying a bath in the sink…
- Either we overeat, make unhealthy choices, or skip meals altogether when we’re stressed. Keep three or four healthy snacks at your desk so you aren’t tempted to binge or do without.
- Aromatherapy can be a good way to relieve stress, especially certain aromas like lavender. Light a candle or warm some oils in your favorite scent.
- If you have a furry or feathered friend, a few minutes of petting and hugging will release endorphins for both of you!
- Go outside, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Getting out of our own heads and into the wide, wide world diminishes stress almost immediately.
Whenever you notice symptoms of stress, take a moment to identify what is making you feel anxious. Ask yourself if there’s another way to look at the situation or the problem, and write down what steps you can take to reduce your stress level.
Question: What are your favorite instant stress-busters? Share in the comments!