4 Ways to Relieve Workday Stress & Blow Off Steam

shutterstock_191837645 copy

In a perfect world, you would spend eight hours a day doing fulfilling work for an appreciative boss. Your lunch hours would be spent with fun and funny co-workers who are uplifting to be around.

Yet, anyone with a job knows the typical workday is far from nirvana. From hours of overworking and disgruntled bosses to co-workers who are gossipy or poor performers, getting through the average workday can be incredibly stressful. Add a long commute in traffic to the day, and it’s no wonder why most people arrive back at home exhausted and ready to blow off steam. Leave the stressors of the workday behind with the following ideas:

Get Moving To Feel Good

Get the heart pumping and work up a sweat to relieve stress and keep work problems at the office. One of the most effective ways to release pent-up work-related frustrations and relax at home is to run or work out, releasing those feel-good endorphins, advocates Per Wickstrom, founder of Best Drug Rehabilitation. Endorphins created from exercising can elevate our mood and energize. Head out for a brisk walk with your pooch at your side or go for a jog around the neighborhood. After sitting at a desk all day, moving around is physically indispensable and emotionally uplifting. A Jawbone fitness tracker is also a fun and effective gadget to monitor your activity and adopt other healthy, stress-mitigating habits like eating nutritionally and sleeping well.

Find Happiness In A New Hobby

Work can be stressful because we allocate so many resources to tasks we are required to do, as opposed to activities we enjoy doing. Take up a new hobby and learn a new skill to create happy work-life balance and take your mind off workday stress. Love to cook? Sign up for culinary lessons through a local cooking school or community center. Are you an outdoorsy thrill-seeking adventurist? Buy a new or pre-owned motorcycle and join a local club to meet passionate bike enthusiasts. Throughout the week, you can look forward to your big weekend ride and shop online stores like BikeBandit to find cool riding gear and accessories while learning more about your new passion.

Take It Out On Martial Arts

Learning and practicing martial arts like Kung Fu is a fantastic way to redirect toxic energy and unleash tension through strategic movement. Martial arts can help calm the mind and center your thoughts, serving as a therapeutic outlet for frustrations. Martial arts exercises encompass traditional combat practices and training methods, including strikes (e.g. kicks and punches) and grappling (e.g. throwing, chokeholds and pinning techniques). Channeling your inner martial arts prowess can be rewarding. Use your foot or hand to break through a wooden board and experience a sense of accomplished peace.

Let Loose With Yoga

Yoga has been practiced for centuries as a physical, mental and spiritual discipline for relaxing, de-stressing and strengthening the body, mind and soul. Engaging in a series of moving and stationary poses performed with deep breathing techniques creates healthy, natural relaxation, boosts moods and helps produce a state of equilibrium (or balance). You don’t even have to attend a formal yoga class, explains Womanietly.com. Unwind after a long workday and follow a yoga practice online to clear your head of work stress and replace it with positive energies.

Posted in Stress Management | Tagged , , | Comments Off

Top 5 Ways To Reduce Stress This Holiday Season

It’s the most wonderful time of the year for many — but it can also feel like the most stressful time of the year. Balancing your time and energy between family, presents, food, holly and jolly can wear you out. Stay merry this season by taking steps to reduce your stress and (heaven forbid) enjoy your holiday season.

Simplify Your Holiday Plans

Even though Christmas only comes once a year, that doesn’t mean you have to do everything every year. Reduce your stress this year by reducing the number of things on your holiday to do list and asking for help from others. If you’re in charge of Christmas dinner, try delegating the work and asking others to bring desserts or side dishes. Getting into the spirit of the season doesn’t mean you have to say “yes” to everything. Plan your participation in holiday events without overdoing yourself, and practice saying “no.”

Exercise

During the busy holiday months, it’s tempting to buy yourself extra time by skipping your trip to the gym or your afternoon walk. Maintaining a regular exercise routine is one of the most effective and natural ways to relieve stress, and it’s important to stick to your regular workout. It will help to keep you sane, even with your busy schedule, and also help work off extra holiday calories. Eating lots of fruits and vegetables as well as Grandma’s famous gingerbread cookies is also crucial to your holiday calm, since fresh food contains the vitamins and nutrients your body needs to keep your immune system strong.

Budget Carefully for Gifts

Nothing makes the season stressful like money woes. Make your season merry and bright by mapping out a budget that you can afford beforehand and sticking to it. If you love hitting the Black Friday sales, make sure that you have your budget in hand before you go to avoid accidentally overspending on sale price goodies. You don’t have to spend a lot to warm someone’s heart this year. Focus on getting thoughtful gifts over flashy ones; sometimes it’s truly the thought that counts.

Upgrade Home Security

Peace on Earth and peace of mind go hand in hand when you upgrade your home security for the holiday season. Burglaries and break ins steadily rise during the holiday season, but you can reduce your stress over this worrying statistic by making sure your alarm system is well prepared. It’s good to scope out the best home security prices in your area, whether that means ADT in Durham, NC, or a local service provider in Toledo, OH — wherever you are, and whatever your budget, it pays to shop around. Another economical alternative (although hardly fool-proof) would be integrating your directions into your home security setup; putting up a simple string of lights on your house, or having a team of LED reindeer on your front lawn, will keep your home well lit all night. Using a programmable light system or a remote control system is a great way to control your lighting even when you’re not at home and keep your home festive and stress free.

Do Your Holiday Shopping Online

Instead of pushing and shoving for the best holiday deals at a crowded mall or superstore, get your Christmas shopping done from the comfort of your own home. Shopping online saves time and takes a lot of the stress out of finding the perfect gift for everyone on your nice list, and you can even find local and handcrafted items online. Some online sellers also offer food items and fresh flowers right to your door, taking the hassle out of shopping for Christmas dinner last minute. Online shopping is convenient and delivers holiday cheer right to your doorstep, but make sure to purchase for reputable sellers only and order with plenty of time for your items to arrive.

This article was kindly supplied by our guest blogger Jared Hill.

Posted in Simple Stress Strategies, Stress Management | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off

Stress relief in the form of the flowers

As a part of the nature, man is connected to all things around him. Since the dawn of time, it is known that the man’s surrounding, climate, weather and the wildlife around him all affect him in ways we can’t yet begin to imagine. As the nature’s oldest source of beauty, plants have always had an unbreakable and mysterious connection with the human spirit. Perhaps this is the reason why, in this age of steel and concrete, a lot of city-dwellers flee to the countryside to find their refuge in nature, if only in the form of having some houseplants around.

Being One with Nature

The intricate connection between man and the flora and fauna that surround him is a source of energy both ways. We may use natural resources from the world around us in order to heal and nourish both our mind and body. There are plenty of occasions in which a gift of flowers has been proven to offer some form of relief, until it has become a pillar of tradition in important events such as birthdays, weddings, and funerals. To show support to a friend or a loved one, in the time of need, a gift of plants or flowers might just be the perfect thing.

The list of possibilities is endless since we can chose to send anything from a healthy fruit basket to a bright gift bouquet of get well flowers. Vendors of such gifts will always pay attention to what they are including in the mix, and how appropriate it is for the given situation. Fruit baskets for sick people include lots of immunity boosting citrus fruits, and business packages never include food that is sloppy when eaten, or rots quickly. Flower bouquets for hospital visits comprise cheery but calm colored plants, with extra care to make sure the included plants don’t trigger potential allergic reactions. Any of these gifts may improve the mood of its receiver significantly, not just by its pure natural scent or a vitamin input boost but just by its calming presence. Everyone knows the saying that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but there is also the aesthetical therapy the sole presence of carefully selected flowers may trigger.

A Rose by Any Other Name

Shakespeare said that a rose by any other name would smell as sweet, but what may be true for the name of the flower may not be so for its color. There is scientific proof behind the theory that different colors affect our mind and mood in different ways, and the same goes for flowers. When choosing a gift bouquet, the color is the crucial detail to bear in mind; for example, the color blue represents openness, serenity and calmness and is thus often recommended for one on a recovery. Flowers which are yellow in color symbolizes friendship, happiness and a fresh start. The color green is the color of health, resilience, and the primordial forces of nature, and is therefore perfect for someone whose psychological condition we aim to improve with this gift – it is the single color with the most calming effect. However, there are some colors one should mind the psychological effect of very much, when one is picking them for a get-well bouquet. Red symbolizes passion, desire and energy which may be just a little bit too dynamic and aggressive for a friend whose state is emotionally or physically shaken.

Apart from all of this, another relevant thing on this topic is the form in which this gift is sent. The list of options is yet again rich in its diversity. From opulent bouquets to carefully arranged Ikebana, there are countless ways in which we can express our care and support.

Throughout history man has turned to nature for help and guidance. Not much has changed since the dawn of time. What better monument to this connection between man and nature than carefully and accordingly assembling your immediate décor with reverence to the power of color and florals.

IMG_3796-0.PNG

Posted in Simple Stress Strategies | Tagged , , | Comments Off

Stress Repelling Activities

One of the greatest modern threats and menaces to human kind is definitely stress. This coeval condition is caused by our constant movement and pursuit for better life conditions, not allowing us to “stop by and smell the flowers”, and to ease off. A fast-paced lifestyle can lead to serious health issues, leaving us mentally ravaged. The silver lining in the widespread nature of this condition is that foolproof stress relieving activities are well known to the general public. The activities are most often some combo of a seemingly light physical sport that drains will-power and stamina, engaging the performer through and through.

Boating

Becoming more popular as it becomes more affordable, boating is on the constant rise among modern people. Though buying a ship or a boat is the fastest way to get into the trade, it is too sudden a change to be comfortable. Building a boat, whether by yourself or with the help of experienced professionals will have you enjoying yourself as you work (woodwork is a relaxing hobby as well), and then as you sail your own craft on the open waters for the first time. Sailing is considered one of the most relaxing hobbies, with the blend of wind, waves, and physical and mental alertness. Also, experiencing nature in this raw form will help you gain some perspective and a new perception of being. And the bonus is the amazing sailor’s tan!

Gardening

Gardening as a stress repellant is a tale as old as time. Growing a plant is a fragile, yet loving business, but it’s certainly a calmer one than growing a child. The role of the nurturer, sans problems not related to the nurtured object’s most basic needs – food, shelter, fresh air and sunlight, is a pleasant and rewarding environment. Working a field, will leave you tired and in a constant worry about the outcome of the crop, but a smaller scale garden is only the good, none of the bad. Far eastern cultures have always focused on the peace of mind and the search for a state of Zen. Zen gardening is a thing that westerners have easily adopted. Tiny Zen garden sets including a bonsai plants, gravel and stones may not exactly traditional, but the relaxation you feel while working them is real.

Yoga

Coming from the ancient Hindu tradition, this form of exercise found its place and application today. It is highly popular because it requires neither special equipment, nor a designated room, so you can work out at home. Its popularity has made it more accessible in the digital age as well, and you can make sure you stay consistent in your yoga routine with the help of several apps (staying consistent with exercising is something most of us need a little help with, actually). Yoga is deeply connected with meditation, it can help you relieve from daily pressure, as you look for inner peace and balance. Many forms of yoga also combine some form of physical activity, and the benefits are doubled.

So, think carefully. Can you really avoid stress? No, never. But you can do so many things remove the psychic restraints it places upon you. Occasionally doing something involving body and soul is enough to get you through the working week, and out of the rut of deadlines.

This article has been kindly supplied by our guest blogger Kate Flannery.

Posted in Simple Stress Strategies | Tagged , , | Comments Off

Reduce Your Stress With 5 Easy Yoga Apps

Yoga is practiced to bring the mind and body together through exercising, meditating and breathing, explains American Yoga Association. The exercises are designed to pressure the body through its glandular systems to increase your overall health and raise your self-awareness and understanding. It is a great way to relieve stress because it clears your mind and works your body.

If you don’t have time to go to a yoga studio or take a class at the gym, teach yourself yoga on your own schedule by downloading yoga apps to your smartphone. This way, you can do as much or as little as you want, and not add another item to your stressful to-do list. Here are just a few suggestions:

Daily Yoga

Daily Yoga has everything you need to begin and practice yoga. There are 19 complete programs that are designed for beginners and advanced users and include exercises such as seated and lying poses, meditation and breathing. Other programs center on parts of the body such as yoga for the abs and yoga for slim legs. In addition, there is a Sun Salutation program as well as two body toning programs and daily yoga for your back.

Daily Yoga costs $9.99 and is available for Android, iOS and Windows.

Pocket Yoga

Pocket Yoga is a bit different because it’s a tracker as well as a yoga trainer. It contains a simulation of an actual yoga studio. A calm voice walks you through the poses and instructs you on how to breathe as soothing music plays in the background.

This app doesn’t need the Internet, so you can use it anytime, anywhere. It has a dictionary that’s searchable for answers to any yoga questions, and there are photos for each one of the poses that include correct posture and alignment.

Pocket Yoga is available for $4.99 for Android, iOS and Windows.

5 Minute Yoga

If you want to do yoga but have a limited amount of time, this is the app for you.

5 Minute Yoga has a huge library of illustrated sessions that will help you de-stress quickly. As the title indicates, they’re only five minute workouts, so they are perfect to do before work or bed. Plus, there are over 350 different sessions, so you will not get bored.

5 Minute Yoga is available for $0.99 for iOS.

YogaCoach

Do you want a yoga coach, but not go to a yoga studio? YogaCoach is perfect for you.

It is a simple app aimed toward beginners, and has three different yoga programs: Daily Yoga for beginners, Theme Yoga (which features poses for different body parts) and Healing Yoga (for various health symptoms). It has a video and voice instruction for each pose.

YogaCoach is $1.99 and available for iOS.

Yoga is a lifestyle choice. Regular Yoga practice will unite your body and soul and help your overall stress levels and health. If you want to live a calmer, happier, stress-free life, then choose the lifestyle that does it all.

Posted in Simple Stress Strategies | Tagged , , , | Comments Off