3 De-Stressing Activities That Take Less Than 5 Minutes

3 De-Stressing Activities That Take Less Than 5 Minutes

1. Writing Things Down

A great way to handle stress is to write things down. You can take five minutes, a piece of scratch paper, and a pen to your problems. Some people will write about what is stressing them as a way to vent, and others will instead write down things they are grateful for and use it as a moment to express gratitude.

 

Either way, journaling is a great way to relieve stress and anxiety, especially if one focuses on the positive.

 

2. Lighting a Candle

Our environment can be what is exacerbating or helping to ease what is going on in our minds, sometimes in ways we are not even fully aware of. Smell is a vital sense that we often don’t give much thought to.

 

If you’re feeling stressed, light a candle. Here are some popular scents:

  • Lavender
  • Rose
  • Frankincense
  • Sandalwood
  • Orange or orange blossom
  • Geranium

3. Take a Breath

Deep Breathing can help you to activate your parasympathetic nervous system, which controls your body’s relaxation responses. You can bring awareness to your breath and slow your heart rate, allowing you to feel more in the moment, in control, and peaceful.

One method is Diaphragmatic Breathing, also called Abdominal Breathing. It is breathing that is done by contracting the diaphragm. Air enters the lungs, the chest does not rise and the belly expands during this type of breathing. You can find a helpful beginner’s video on how to practice Diaphragmatic Breathing here.

A Burden Lifted: Bible Verses on Anxiety and Worry

A Burden Lifted: Bible Verses on Anxiety and Worry

 

Going through a hard time? Distracted by all the pain and suffering in your life? We all do sometimes. The easy thing to do when we’re dealing with tough emotions or fatigue is to give in to anxiety and negativity. We can think of the slipperiest slope of situations and bog ourselves down even more.

However, if we are Christians, we have everlasting faith in a Savior that cares for us and will give us the strength to deal with hard times when they come out way. He wants us to look to Him in prayer when things get overwhelming.

1 Peter 5:7 says, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” God is right here waiting for us. If we call on Him, He will come, and He will take care of us. There is nothing to worry about when we have Him there to make sure we make it out okay in the end.

Things can weigh us down, but God is right there to take the load and carry it for us. God calls to us in Matthew 11 verses 28 through 30, saying, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

He is here for us always.

Here are some other verses on worrying:

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?  Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?” Matthew 6:25-27

“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6:34

“And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his  span of life?” Luke 12:25

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” John 14:27

3 Ways to Motivate Yourself

3 Ways to Motivate Yourself

We all have some aspiration, a dream deferred by the stress and struggle of daily life. That dream is always poking at your side, nudging you every weekend and gnawing at your chest whenever you lie awake at night.  It can be disheartening to feel like you’re procrastinating or that you’ll never start— let alone finish— that thing. But it doesn’t have to be this way. 

 

You can do. 

 

You’re a doer. 

 

You just need to get started. And you can. Your first step is reading this. Read the rest, and get started.

1. Start Small

Sometimes, we’re looking at the finished project or big picture of something, and the task is so daunting that we don’t even dare to start, to try. As they say, though, Rome wasn’t built in a day. We all have to start somewhere, and getting started is the first step.

 

Look at your goal and set small steps that will help you get to it!

 

2. Just Get Started!

Listen, tomorrow never comes. If we keep pushing things off until we feel like doing it, they might never get done. Often, what we need is to just get started, and our excitement will build when we’re more immersed in the project.

 

You might find things getting easier and more fun once the work is started.

 

3. Get Rid of Daily Distractions

When you have tons of things around you, be it your phone or noise, it can be really hard to settle on something and truly give the time and dedication you need to get started and make progress on something. Turn everything you don’t need off, shut the door to your workspace, and set a timer for how long you want to work on your project.

 

Start with something short like 5 minutes to half an hour. Set a timer, and don’t go away from your project until it goes off. You can work up to more and adjust your time as you get more used to allotting a certain time every day or week to work on your project.

 

If you keep to this, it’ll practically do itself!

DE-STRESS | Week 4 | Reading – The Easiest Way to Relax Without Thinking

DE-STRESS | Week 4 | Reading – The Easiest Way to Relax Without Thinking

As well as writing, reading can also be a fantastic stress buster. Whether you love science fiction or romance, turning the pages of a good book when stressed provides us with a form of escapism.

 

Carrying a book around also helps alleviate social anxiety. It gives you something to do and become absorbed by when alone in a crowd or taking public transport. Wherever possible, though, always chose a real paperback or hardback over an e-book for the benefit of reduced screen time and eye-strain.

 

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Thanks for coming each week to join us for this series. If you liked it, consider leaving a comment! And look out for the next one!

DE-STRESS | Week 3 | Discover Easy Days to Relax by Getting Creative

DE-STRESS | Week 3 | Discover Easy Days to Relax by Getting Creative

Kicking caffeine is a fantastic way to reduce stress long-term. However, that’s no good if you need to relieve tension right this second.

 

Whether at home or work, an easy way to relax can be to write about your feelings.

 

When your head is a tornado of emotions, it’s not always possible to disclose these to other people. Writing solves this problem by allowing you to channel your stress outwardly.

 

  • Carry a journal or create a file on your phone or tablet, where you can write out your feelings whenever you feel overwhelmed.
  • Write honestly, even if what you are writing wouldn’t usually make sense to another person.
  • Freely jot down thoughts, dreams, and details of stressful situations that otherwise always stay bottled up.

  

Writing feelings out is essentially a form of self-therapy. Just remember to keep where you write your most intimate thoughts far from prying eyes.

DE-STRESS | Week 2 | Kick Your Caffeine Habit

DE-STRESS | Week 2 | Kick Your Caffeine Habit

At present, 94% of American workers cite high-stress as being a normal part of life. Sadly, one of the first things people do when stressed at work is reach for their nearest source of caffeine.

 

Coffee especially gives people a physical pick-me-up. This is because coffee is a stimulant. Sadly, this means that caffeine increases our heart rate and blood pressure. In both the short and long-term, this exasperates stress.

 

Are you a caffeine addict? If so, consider replacing coffee with green tea, camomile tea, or fresh juice. You won’t get the same physical kick. However, you will start noticing significantly reduced stress in the long-term.

DE-STRESS | Week 1 | Easy Ways to Relax with Breathing Exercises

 

DE-STRESS Week 1: Easy Ways to Relax with Breathing Exercises

Make no mistake, chronic stress is physiologically damaging. The good news, though, is that there are physiological ways to counter feeling overwhelmed.

 

By far the easiest way to relax is to breathe. For optimal results, press the tip of your tongue behind your front teeth. Then, follow the simple steps below:

 

  • First, exhale fully through your mouth.
  • Next, breathe in long and continuously for 4-seconds through your nose.
  • After breathing in, hold your breath for 7-seconds.
  • Lastly, completely exhale through your mouth while counting to eight.

 

If you are experiencing high-stress, you are likely chest breathing. This fails to provide enough oxygen to your bloodstream. Breathing exercises like the above remedy this by helping reset your respiratory system.

 

**New Series Alert** DE-STRESS

New Series: DE-STRESS

Feeling stressed? At this time of year, it’s natural. You are financially recouping after the festive season. Added to that, there is the shock of going back to work. However, stress can sometimes get out of control.

In any one year, 74% of people feel so stressed at some point, that they feel overwhelmed. Here, we’ll, therefore, look at a few easy ways to relax, even during high-stress situations.

Each week, we’ll bring you a new DE-STRESSing tip, so be sure to check in every Friday (the first one’s already up)!

3 Social Survival Tips For The Holidays

3 Social Survival Tips For The Holidays

 

You just finished another Christmas movie on Netflix and have lost count on how many you’ve watched today alone. However, you don’t know if you can stomach another one because they all end the same. The small-town girl finds true love in the end. It’s normally with some big city guy who was only there to visit and ends up finding the true meaning of love. It can be nauseating. Fortunately, this doesn’t mean you have to dread the holidays. You don’t need to look at Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s, or even Valentine’s Day as something to be bitter about. Here are three survival tips for lonely women on the holidays.

 

  1. Seek Connections

 

You’re not alone. There are others like you. Technology progressed far enough already where we have apps and websites that help us connect with others who might also be feeling lonely during the holidays. Even just a friendly exchange between two strangers can be enough to ward off feelings of loneliness.

 

  1. Restructure your Expectations

 

Turn off those Christmas movies as they’re only setting your expectations of how holidays like Christmas “should be.” Not everyone is going to have that perfect Cinderella story, and that’s okay. You should move your thinking away from believing that’s the only perfect way of living.

 

  1. Take Care Of Yourself First

 

It might sound cliché but taking care of yourself first might help you get out of that funk. Going to a spa or joining a new gym where you can work up your confidence and self-esteem can help you get into the mindset that anyone would be lucky to have you in their lives. The more you feel better about yourself, the more you can push through loneliness into happiness.

 

Don’t let the crippling feeling of loneliness get you down during a long holiday season. There are ways you can help yourself so that you can achieve happiness, even if you’re by yourself.

3 Healthful Food Ideas For Thanksgiving

3 Healthful Food Ideas For Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a yearly “cheat day” for everyone around the world. It’s an excuse to put any diets to the side and splurge. Unfortunately, that causes a snowball effect for many people. They will end up telling themselves that they will go back on a diet after Thanksgiving only for them to continue making bad dietary choices well past Christmas. Fortunately, you can start making smart dietary choices going into Thanksgiving, so you don’t have to join the crowd of people buying up gym memberships when January 1st rolls around. Let’s take a look at 3 food ideas if you don’t want to gain weight during Thanksgiving.

 

  1. Deviled Eggs

 

Deviled eggs are a protein-packed filler and will keep you from filling up on other foods during the holidays. The best part about deviled eggs is, while they may be filling, depending on the recipe you use you’ll only be consuming about 50 calories per half egg. Just make sure that you’re not using a fat-packed jar of mayonnaise. Opt-in for a lighter option.

 

  1. Reduced Sodium-Whole Wheat Stuffing

 

Women are at the same risk of heart disease as men and that means you should go for lower-sodium options when it comes to stuffing. Eating whole wheat alone reduces your risk of diabetes which also leads to heart disease, so combining the two is a no brainer. Don’t think you’re giving up much flavor for a healthier option because a lower-sodium option is just as good. That means use unsalted butter and low-sodium chicken brother.

 

  1. Herb-Roasted Turkey

 

We’re not going to tell you that you can’t have a turkey for Thanksgiving. That’s like telling someone they can’t have a tree for Christmas. However, if you’re going to go with a turkey, you should roast it in different herbs instead of a crazy amount of salt or fattening juices. You’ll want to use a combination of oregano, sage, thyme, sprigs, and rosemary. It comes out much better in the end and you won’t need to worry about basting.

 

These are great recipes if you’re looking to have a more health-conscious Thanksgiving, especially if you’re hosting with aging family members.