I’m stressing out!
I am a natural stressor. If people were paid to stress, I would be CEO. Take my natural proclivity for stress and add to it a stressful job and fertility treatments and I am a functioning basket case… on the best days. Being tightly wound up causes me to have emotional breakdowns (mostly bouts of anger) and to physically be in pain because my muscles are in knots.
Five years ago my go to stress reliever would have been to curl up with a book and zone out for a few hours (or more than a few). Nowadays, I struggle to find a few hours a week to get lost in a book. In order for me to relax, I had to step outside my box and really think about what I could do to relax, rest, and feel balanced.
Some are a little unorthodox, others are things that “everyone” already knows, but all were outside my box. If you’re needing a quick break or a long escape, here are 5 ways to help relieve stress.
5 Unique Stress Relievers
Coloring was something I had to learn to appreciate. I use to hate adult coloring books. They would stress me out. Too many shapes and lines and room for mistakes. It wasn’t until recently that I learned the beauty of coloring. I was attending training in Detroit and my boss had coloring books and pencils on the table for us to use while we listened to presentations. All I could think was how is this suppose to help me relax?
By the end of my training (and many coloring sheets later), I was relaxed and I realized that I was able to focus more on the speakers. So now I color and it allows me to relax and focus on other projects at the same time. Who knew?!
Taking a break to breathe for 1-5 minutes is something you can do anywhere. I use the app Calm on my Apple Watch to remind me to take time out of my day to breathe and relax. Stopping and taking a breather has helped me immensely. Whenever I’m feeling stressed at work, I use this simple tool to help refocus.
Chances are you are already doing something crafty and you don’t even know it. Up until about 6 months ago, I would vehemently tell you that I’m not a creative person. “I can’t do it” and “I’m not good enough” were staple phrases that I used when people asked me if I was crafty. It took me realizing that being crafty doesn’t mean you have to build a house. It simply means creating something new. I was already creating and didn’t know it. I love creating excel spreadsheets and learning new formulas and I love creating graphics for the blog. This is being crafty! It comes in all different shapes and sizes, so find what fits for you.
I started small. My first “crafty” project was making personalized coffee cups. I’m now making wreaths and have a new dremel tool that I can’t wait to try out during the next few weeks.
I clean when I’m stressed and the bigger the stressor determines how big the cleaning project. If I’m cleaning out closets, it’s bad. Organizing the chaos helps to clear my mind and as a bonus, I have a clean apartment.
Journaling, to me, is messy. When I say journaling, I’m not talking about the cute bullet journals or daily planners. I’m talking about a notebook that purpose is for a no holds barred, get it all out of your head, writing season. I have several journals that I keep just for this. One of them is taped together and I love it because it shows the struggles that I’ve gone through to get here. You never know when and where the need to journal is going to hit so I keep one at home and one in my purse. Life is messy, stress is messier, and the last thing you need is a pristine journal that you stress over because it’s too pretty to write in.
Sometimes the best medicine is to get it all out. Don’t think about what you’re writing. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve started writing about one thing and ended in what the real underlying cause of my stress is.