You’ve got deadlines, appointments and a rigorous schedule to tackle each week. With trying to maintain your health and wellness, and keep up with life, it may seem challenging to set aside time for relaxation. Don’t let this be the case! Instead, look for little ways you can decrease your stress levels.
While being “on” all the time can assist you with getting a lot done, it leaves little room for you to turn your mind “off” for 20 minutes to an hour. Why does this matter? Well, according to the American Institute of Stress (AIS) 80% of workers experience stress on the job, and almost half of them say they need help to manage their stress.
Additionally, in their 2014 study, AIS found that 77% of study participants stated that they regularly experience physical symptoms caused by stress. Statistics such as these make it clear; we must set aside me-time in which we let things go, and take the time to relax.
We know spa days may be hard to come by with a busy schedule, so we’ve put together a few tips for including some much-needed relaxation into your day.
When we become stressed we may not be getting enough oxygen which can put a damper on our energy levels. Deep breathing can happen anywhere, anytime! In the hallway before your next work meeting? Breathe. Stuck in rush hour traffic to pick up the kids? Breathe. Stressed after a long day? Breathe! We promise it works.
For best results sit up straight with your feet on the floor (or stand if you can!) and breathe in deeply through your nose and unhurriedly through your mouth. Take about five or ten of these deep belly breaths whenever you feel the anxiety creeping in.
Pay attention to your heart rate and blood flow.
Stressful situations might make your heart beat fast, but that’s not we’re looking for! Increasing your heart rate and blood flow can be beneficial when you are working out, exercise is an excellent stress reducer. If you sit at a desk or computer all day, you may be at risk of health concerns if you don’t get your blood flowing and heart rate up regularly.
When we exercise, get up and move, or enjoy an infrared session our heart rate and blood flow can increase to trigger endorphin production to reduce the negative side-effects of stress. Though a midday workout might not be doable, taking the time to work out or participate in an infrared sessionbefore or after week a few times a week can make a difference in your weekly stress-levels.
FIT TIP: Infrared heat can do more than increase blood flow and heart rate. Full body infrared immersion can also lower cortisol levels, ease pain and help your stresses melt away.
Set aside 10 minutes to step outside and separate yourself from the current stress you’re handling. Walk around, feel the breeze on your skin, hear birds chirping, admire the local plants and flowers and get a little sun. Connecting with nature even briefly can help to relax your mind. Combine the act of getting yourself outside with the deep breaths we mentioned above and see how much better you feel!
Listen to music.
The music we hear during the day can influence our mood. When you need to focus or calm down upbeat tunes might not feel like music to your ears. What do experts recommend? Classical or ambient, nature inspired sounds are great background sounds to encourage focus and Zen-like feelings. Is there a lot going on in the office around you? Pop in your headphones and turn on some classical scores to ease your mind.
Stress can leave you feeling frazzled, but a busy week is no match for you! Use the tips above to insert moments of calm into your weekly routine. By doing so, you will be able to handle tough situations and long days with calm and ease.