Well guys, I realized that I have been on a bit of a hiatus for the last two weeks, which I apologize for. My last two weeks have been stressful and demanding to say the least. Work has been incredibly stressful, which has left me with little time or energy to devote to writing – for that, I apologize.
As many of you know, I work in local government doing public relations (among many other duties). This means that there are weeks like the last two – exhausting, demanding, stressful. There are also weeks that are more calm, low-key, and relaxing.
Many of you also know that I struggle with stress and anxiety, which often go hand-in-hand and lead me into vicious cycles of no sleep, unhealthy habits, and a lot of tooth grinding. If any of you clench or grind your teeth when you get stressed, you feel my pain (literally).
So, I thought I would take this opportunity to fill you in on some of the things that I do to alleviate some stress in my life.
- Workout. This is one that I struggle to maintain. I often lack the energy or motivation to go to the gym when I am stressed with work, but whenever I prioritize exercise and being physically active, I always feel better and more relaxed. Try riding a bike, going for a walk, or doing some yoga. Whatever takes your mind of the stressors in your life. I try to walk for part of my lunch break – you would be amazed at how helpful 30 minutes out of the office can be. Listen to tunes and drown out everything else.
- Sleep. This may sound easier than it can be sometimes, especially if you’re like me and are constantly thinking about the other things you need to be doing. What helps me get to sleep when I am stressed is to take a cool wash cloth or ice pack and place it over my eyes, while listening to relaxing sounds (I personally use an app called Atmosphere, and it’s amazing).
- Take deep breaths. I know it sounds cliche, but it really works. Close your eyes, clear your mind, and take three deep breaths. Hold the breath before you exhale and it will work even better. Try to center yourself around positive thoughts and images while you do this.
- Pet an animal. Seriously. I know no one who can be petting a dog, cat, hamster, or any other furry creature and stay upset. I have always loved animals, for this very reason. They are always understanding and never fail to make me happy, relaxed, and feeling energized.
I hope these few things will help you to deal with the stresses in your day-to-day life. Here’s to a new week – may it be full of laughter, productivity, and minimal stress.