Welcome my fellow stressed humans!
None of us are immune, but we all handle the tense times differently. I thought it would be helpful to share the steps I take to stay on top of the stress mountain in my life. You may be surprised, but even massage therapists can't always get in to see their favorite bodyworker for a mini-escape the moment some stress goes down.
1. Take a minute.
When things are feeling chaotic, out of your control, and just legit bonkers its easy to get wrapped up in the moment. Remove yourself from the constant swirling craziness just for even a minute. Take a big breath and sigh it out. Giving yourself a timeout can work wonders, it worked when we were toddlers, why not now?
2. Get Outside.
This shouldn't come as a surprise, but I like to be outside. And turns out, nature has stress reducing effects on us humans. The trees, the sky, the songs that the birds sing. Its a wonderful distraction for anything stressful. I love the book The Nature Fix for some insight as to why being outside can calm you down so much.
Getting my heart pumping and my blood flowing. The gym, a trail, just some pushups or jumping jacks, a brisk walk around the block. The ultimate quick fix to stress. *You may need to schedule a massage after you've overdone it with the push ups.
Sometimes the stress is all up in my head, a worrying situation that is looping in the mind. So I give myself a different ear worm to distract and it works out. Sometimes the messages in music are enough to shake me out of my stressful thought loop. Check out our Waywest Spotify playlists for relaxing.
This is has been my cure for road rage. I used to walk to work when I lived in the neighborhood, but now I'm one of those people who spend almost an hour every day in the car (OMG!). Irritability with traffic, news feeling frustrating, and the top hits on the radio weren't cutting it. I needed a change so I downloaded an audiobook out of boredom and the effects of listening to a story have totally transformed my driving experience. Stress way less.
6. Good Smells.
Have you tried essential oils? Lavender quells the stress for me. I keep some in my bag and every once in a while I just take a hit off the ole bottle and let the switch flip and it helps.
7. Talk it out.
Mom, friends, my dog, the walls.. sometimes just saying whats stressing me out takes the power away from it and I can move on.
8. Speaking of dogs.
To me, animal time is the stress cure all. I have fantasized about creating a massage space that is also an animal sanctuary. Just imagine, you could cuddle furry friends before and after massages, or maybe a sweet kitty could curl up on your belly while you get your temples massaged... The dream.
9. Down with the screen.
Maybe this correlates to my nature time, but looking at memes, responding to emails, and getting lost in the instagram/facebook blackhole are little stress pools that can be avoided. Setting screen time works for me to manage stress around time and other feelings that crop up from the blessing/curse of social media.
10. Practice Gratitude.
That is such a buzz-wordy new age way to phrase it, but damn if they aren't right. You mad, be glad.. Listing what I'm thankful for in my life on a regular basis combats the stress. Doing this before you're stressed makes it that much easier to stay out of the state of stress.
Example: "I'm so grateful for my job, I get to make people feel better everyday, I am thankful for my clients, for the light they bring to the office and my life.." And just writing that I connected to the serious joy that work brings me and I can't wait to get in there! Thank you!
Hope some of these practices help find their way into your stress less routine, and if not make sure to book a massage in advance to help combat the stress out there!