Look at the stars. Sometimes in everyday life, our burdens and stress can begin to feel overwhelming. Taking a moment to look at the night sky, and appreciating the beautiful bright stars up above can remind us what a vast universe we are apart of. It may even make you begin to see all of the infinite possibilities of our world.
Keep yourself hydrated. It may seem like an obvious task, but most people don’t drink enough water each day. Being dehydrated can cause headaches, and often increase feelings of irritation, stress, and fatigue. Ensure you’re getting enough water, about eight 8-ounce glasses a day, because it is vital to our health and happiness.
Write a love note. Love is one of the most powerful emotions to combat feelings of sadness or discontent. Try writing a letter to your spouse, your kids, someone you may have lost, or even yourself. Let them know how much you cherish them, and let that love brighten up your day and theirs.
Become a Bookworm. Contrary to what some middle school bullies might believe, reading is definitely cool. It’s also great for self-care. Research suggests that reading on a regular basis keeps the mind sharp as it ages, and reading fiction in particular can stimulate more creativity and an open mind. So crack open your favourite book, and enjoy!
Help others. Find something you’re passionate about and volunteer your time. Studies show volunteering positively affects self-confidence, self-esteem, and overall wellbeing. Help yourself by helping others.
Stretch. Take 5-10 minutes to stretch out the kinks everyday. Stretching can relieve tension and stress in the body.
Start a gratitude journal. Write down things you feel grateful for in your life. A beautiful home, supportive friend, your health, or a loving family. Take the time to really think about and cherish these wonderful blessings in your life.
Try Aromatherapy. We know that breathing techniques can help us relax, but what we breathe in might be just as important as how we breathe. Research suggests that citrus scents (orange essential oils in particular) can help decrease stress and anxiety, and getting a whiff of rosemary may boost memory.
Create a Sleep Sanctuary. Sleep experts agree that the bedroom should only be used for sleeping. Always avoid watching television or using electronic devices in your bedroom. De-cluttering your room and including relaxing artwork, scents, and comfortable bedding can go a long way to make your room sleep approved.
Know Your Strengths. Our weaknesses are always shouting out for our attention. Needy buggers. Try to instead focus on your strengths. You have so many. Focus on them and use them daily. List them out so you never forget what they are. Build your life around them.
Maintain a proper diet and get enough sleep. Food can often be used as a source of comfort for those feeling sad or depressed, but it is important to maintain a healthy diet and get enough sleep to function properly, especially while grieving. It takes a lot of energy to grieve; physically, emotionally, and mentally. It is essential that our body’s are nourished and well-rested to navigate this difficult process.
Accept a little clutter and mess. Just let it be. Some dust and a little dirt has never hurt anyone. Focus on what’s important to you, you can always clean up the mess later. Just don’t go around and feel bad about it on top of everything else!
Journal. Writing your thoughts and feelings in your diary or on a blog is self care therapy that does not cost you a single cent. Expressing our emotions, whether it is talking to a friend, meeting with a therapist, or simply writing your thoughts down in a journal can be very powerful and cathartic.
Learn to accept what is. Stop pushing. Sometimes you have to accept things as they are. Things you can’t change. Things you can’t help but feel. Give yourself a break. Stop trying to wade upstream at high tide. Wait it out. Take a breather and go where the current takes you. You can’t control everything so sometimes you have to trust that the current of life will take you where you need to be.
Have a self date. Spend an hour alone doing something that nourishes you. Read a book, listen to your favourite music, take up a new hobby. Take the time to get to know yourself again.
Activate your self-soothing system. Stroke your arm or give yourself a big bear hug. Studies show that these simple acts can lower feelings of stress or tension. And if both of those feel too weird, try moisturizing.
Punctuate your day with a mini-meditation. Practice one minute of awareness of your thoughts, feelings, and sensations; one minute of focused attention on breathing; and one minute of awareness of the body as a whole. Get to know yourself.
Develop a strong, supportive network – be willing to ask for help if you need it. You do not have to carry your burdens alone. Acknowledge the courage and bravery it takes to ask others for help in a time of need.
Take time each day to do something restful just for you – a walk, a soothing bath, massage, reading a book, beautiful music, or a relaxation tape.
Breathe. Frustrated? Breathe in. Breathe out. Worried? Breathe in. Breathe out. Overwhelmed? Breathe in. Breathe out. Confused? Breathe in. Breathe out. Exhausted? Breathe in. Breathe out. Start there and you can often avoid over-thinking and over-reacting.
Laughter is powerful medicine for soothing both body and mind. It can boost your immune system, reduce pain, and serves as a protective factor against the ravages of stress.
Take an afternoon nap. If you are feeling tired during the day, take a nap. No excuses are needed, even if you end up sleeping way longer than what is considered a power nap.