I write this blog during a time of chaos and set back in our world. A virus is spreading at rapid speed…..a pandemic…..leaving much destruction in its path. Learning how to de-stress is now more important than ever!
Lives have been lost, jobs are on hold, routines have been upended, families have been separated, businesses and schools have been closed, social distancing is in place…..and this is only what we see from the home-front perspective.
The effects of this virus on the world economy are deep….and will take years to recover from.
These are tough, scary and very uncertain times. So much of what is happening is beyond our control. However…..we do have control over how we respond to this situation…..and how we respond can help or hinder our own health.
Now is truly a pivotal time to make the decision to take better care of yourself.
Choosing to enter into full stress mode with worry and anxiety and depression will only cause harm to your health….and your immune system…making you that much more susceptible to the spreading virus…..not to mention lead you to other unhealthy coping mechanisms such as: overeating, lack of sleep, smoking, and drinking
…..of which none of those help to change the situation and actually compound other issues as well!
If this is you……if any or all of the responses I mention sound familiar……I’d like to encourage you to use this time to change your response game up a bit.
Learn How to De-Stress
These are the things I’d say to you (the stressed-out you) if I were sitting with you right now.
I’d take you by the shoulders….or possibly put my hands on your cheeks and get so very uncomfortably close to your face….and tell you to BREATHE!
Yup….number one rule to de-stressing….is to breathe (yep….I breathe before I pray….)
My go-to breathing exercise is called 4-7-8 breathing. Have you heard of it? It is actually developed by Dr. Andrew Weil….and I only discovered it this past year….and it has helped me on so many occasions! I don’t know how I’ve survived without all these 55 yrs! You can learn more about this …and even watch him demonstrate it…here.
Next…….I’d ask if I could pray with you. Maybe you aren’t the praying kind….and maybe you’d tell me no. Just know that I’d pray FOR you anyway. And can I just tell you…..there are no rules to praying! I don’t believe in formalities and prayer. I believe God knows our prayer before it leaves our mind and mouth anyway….so you can think it…whisper it….speak it….or even yell it…..it’s ok! He can handle your hissy fit! He’s an amazing God like that….full of grace….for you! And his office never closes. Just call out to Him……it is a huge stress reliever.
MOVE! Move your body……movement is so helpful for times of stress. Curling up and laying in it….or freezing in fear……is paralyzing. Move!
Walk…..jump….run…..turn on some music and dance. Get that oxygen flowing and loosen those tense muscles and release those endorphins.
Other Ways to De-Stress
Then….try any or all of the following in any order….just to name a few! I’ll even put an asterisk beside the ones I actually do……
- Write. ***
- Call on your friends and family. ***
- Paint. ***
- Read. **
- Nap *
- Cook. **
- Play music. ***
- Decorate. ***
- Rearrange the house. **
- Laugh. *******
- Get a puppy. (seriously might be happening soon)
- Research. **
- Tackle projects you’ve put off. ***
- Have sex (yep….it’s so good for you) ***********
Please know I could go on and on about ways to take better care of yourself.
I actually tried to start this blog multiple times and wasn’t sure the direction it would take. I finally felt led to share with you why it’s so important to be mindful about keeping your stress level down during this pandemic….and how I do this personally…..in my own home……daily.
Stay safe my friend….just do the best you can…..and make the most out of what you have around you!
Check out my four-part Grits & Guts series for more inspiration to live well and be the best version of yourself!
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See you next week!
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