I can’t stress enough how important it is to unwind and de-stress on a daily basis.
For someone like me (most days a busy woman and a tired mom), some days have surprised me and everything just goes swimmingly, but other days can be a bit much, to say the least.
But before I get to how we can manage our everyday stress, I feel that it’s important to understand a bit of science behind it so you can get a bit of an idea of what is actually happening when you’re stressed, and how you can identify it better next time.
When you’re feeling stressed, the brain undergoes chemical and physical changes that affect the way you operate. When these chemicals (like dopamine and epinephrine) in your body starts to increase, your adrenaline rushes that leads to an increase in heart rate, higher blood pressure, and a weakened immune system. When this is left unmanaged over time, you will start to notice that the chemical imbalance in your body allows for other problems to arise such as migraines, asthma, stomach pains, and other serious health issues in the long run. Other psychological effects of unmanaged stress might even arise such as anxiety attacks, depression, insecurity, difficulty to focus, and the list goes on.
All these physical and emotional disruptions could easily be prevented if you are able to manage your stress levels better. Unwinding and distressing truly play a huge role in your overall health and vitality.
Now the question is, what can you actually do to shift yourself into a healthier lifestyle, unwind, recharge, and manage your stress levels better?
The key is to find something that is accessible and sustainable to you, something that you can do every day that is easy and within reach.
For a busy mom like myself, I have looked into quick ways that I can achieve some inner peace every day. Learning and practising mindfulness is a great tool for this - so whenever I am starting to feel overwhelmed, I would stop myself in the tracks, identify the issues that are making me overthink things, breathe, and give myself the space to re-strategize how I’m going about with my day and my plans.
Here are some short and healthy ways that can help you unwind:
If you know me, you’ll know that meditation is at the top of my list. It is effective in helping you stay grounded, live in a state of calm and serenity, and encourages you to relax your mind with compassion. It’s so important to me that everything is done mindfully, be it when you’re cooking, when you’re in a conversation with your husband, or when you’re playing with your children. Be present and don’t let your mind wander and worry about the future, this is step one for me in preventing stress and anxiety.
Journaling at the start and end of your day. I have personally been using the 5-minute journal by Intelligent Change. As the name reads, it only takes up 5 minutes of my time and has paved the way for unimaginable changes in my life and my perspective towards my goals. It truly inspires creativity, keeps your thoughts organised, and most importantly, allows yourself to self-reflect.
Practice kindness, because the nicer you are to people and everything around you, the better you will feel about yourself and everything around you. Compassion and kindness contribute to so much positivity that you won’t even have the time to feel negatively. This reduces stress and some would even say it’s anti-aging!
Get some light exercises going, like taking a walk, or stretching. Even ten minutes of this can help in releasing all the endorphins you need for that feel-good vibe.
Unwinding is something that you should be doing daily, and not just when you’re feeling overwhelmed. By this I mean please don’t wait until you are feeling depressed to start a healthy routine - avoid all that in the first place.
I hope this brings some inspiration on how you can (and should) manage your stress better and not let things weigh you down.
What are some ways that have helped you unwind and recharge?