We all know that looking after ourselves mentally and physically should be a priority, but when live gets busy and stressful it can often fall by the wayside. Ironically, when life is stressful is precisely when taking care of yourself is going to be most important. Being busy can be a good thing, and sometimes we have no choice, but balance is important as you might overwise find yourself burnt out mentally, emotionally and physically. It’s important to know your limits, how you can better manage anxiety and what stress relief tools are at your disposal.
Dealing with stress can be difficult, and it can take time to find the tools or routines that help you manage it. We’re all different, so what works for one may not work for another, and likewise what works one day may not cut it the next. Of course, if you’re struggling with your mental health and need support, please reach out and speak to someone you trust or your GP. Please seek help, don’t suffer alone.
This collaborative post takes a look at just 5 super simple but often underrated things to try to soothe yourself and provide a little stress relief.
Super Simple But Underrated Stress Relief Tips
A Cup Of Tea Solves Everything
Okay, so it might not solve everything, but you can’t quite beat a good cuppa. Sipping on a warm cup of tea in itself can help soothe frazzled nerves, as can the action of ruling out a little block of time for yourself to enjoy it. If you choose a tea with other added benefits then it could just boost that benefit a bit more. Many people claim that herbal tea can help with stress.
There are various herbal teas to choose from, as well as new brands introducing a range of interesting flavours with extra benefits. Some of the classic, common herbal tea choice include:
- Chamomile – Soothing and calming for stress or anxiety. A 2016 study discovered use of chamomile extract in the long term significantly reduced symptoms of generalised anxiety anxiety that were moderate to severe in nature.
- Peppermint tea – This is often suggested for indigestion and other digestive complaints, which could help if stress is impacting your tum. It’s also a general stress-soother as even the scent might help in alleviating anxiety and frustration.
- Passionflower – Often used to help improve quality of sleep, passionflower could also be helpful in reducing anxiety. A 2017 study discovered a passionflower supplement had equal effectiveness to that of benzodiazepine medication when it came to reducing anxiety in patients undergoing dental work.
- Green tea – Has high levels of the amino acid L-Theanine. It’s believed to be beneficial in reducing stress, insomnia and anxiety. A 2017 study discovered that participants who drank green tea consistently reported lower levels of stress than those in the placebo group.
Whether you go herbal or not, making time for a warm cuppa can give you a little ‘me time’ to ease tension, clear your mind and ease stress.
Consider CBD / Hemp Oil
CBD is booming in popularity and the product line is continually expanding. There are various drops, rubs and chewables that could help to soothe frazzled nerves or help you get better sleep.
Stress can have a myriad of knock-on effects, such as to our digestive system, immune system and even out skin. CBD is popular amongst many users for helping with stress and anxiety. CBD from hemp can also provide nourishment thanks to containing vitamins and fatty acids, so it can be beneficial both mentally and physically.
Nurture With Nature
Unless you go out of your way to do it, many people probably don’t spend enough time surrounded by nature and yet many people find the great outdoors can help provide some stress relief and boost their mood. The value of the great outdoors become painfully obvious during the pandemic, and it’s something many of us have missed during lockdown and might still be missing as we continue to shelter or avoid public spaces. Those with chronic illness, pain or other disability may not get out to parks or other outdoor areas as they’d like to, but even the occasional visits to nature can be incredibly beneficial.
If you can, try to spend a little time in nature for the benefits to your physical and mental health. The fresh air, exercise and tranquil environment can blow away the cobwebs and leave you feeling calmer. You can do it alone to clear your mind or with others, and there are a few different ways you can do it; a trip to the beach, a walk in a local park, a stroll up the hills, going for a run for those with the physical ability to do so, a picnic in the park etc.
There are many ways you can incorporate time in nature into your life, either occasionally or as part of a regular routine. If you have a garden, just taking a wander around it, sitting outside for a cup of tea or spending a few minutes here and there to admire the plants and the nature around you can be very grounding and calming.
Lose Yourself In The Music
For those with hearing, try indulging your senses with music. Dance along if you can, sing if you feel like it, or just let it heal as you relax. From relaxing melodies, classic and chill out tracks, to uplifting pop songs, 80s cheese or frustration-busting rock ‘n’ roll, there’s something for everyone. Pick what you need to get you through the stress and lose yourself in the music.
Cuddles & Cuteness
Cuddles aren’t something everyone can do, especially during the pandemic, but if you have a friend, partner, family member or pet then some cuddles can be instantly calming. Animals themselves can be a great anxiety-soother (when they’re not peeing on your duvet or eating your shoes). They can be grounding and help you gain some perspective on life when you’re so stressed, while your cat is zonked out asleep without a care in the world and looking super cute.
Don’t have a human or animal to cuddle? Fear not, for another instant stress-soother could be right at your fingertips. Cute puppy pics on Instagram, funny cat videos on YouTube and comical memes on Twitter can take the heat of the situation and maybe even raise a smile. Spend a few minutes flicking through the funnies and cuteness for a break from the stress.
Stress Relief Is Important
Looking after your physical and mental health requires direct action, and sometimes that ironically involves doing a little less so that we can rest a little more. There are various tools and tips to better manage stress, and integrating a couple into your days whenever you need them can help prevent overwhelm and burnout.
It’s not always as easy in practice, and for many (myself included), giving this advice is easier than taking it yourself. Some people won’t even believe that they deserve to feel less stressed, so they end up feeling guilty for taking time out or doing something enjoyable to de-stress.
Self-care isn’t selfish and you deserve to look after yourself, so make time to ensure your physical and mental health are prioritised where possible.
[ This is a collaborative post ]