Do you ever have difficulty relaxing? Sometimes in the middle of a stressful day it is hard thinking of ways to feel more peaceful. Here is a list of 10 ways that I have found helpful.
BREATHE Take time throughout your day to take 3 deep breaths.
PAUSE When you are feeling stressed pause and use your senses to ground you. Notice your surroundings, pay attention to what you see and hear. Take a deep breath. Light a candle. Some find lavender, jasmine, vanilla or orange candles to be soothing.
WATER Have a glass of water or make a cup of herbal tea. Some calming teas include Chamomile, Honey lavender, and Kava.
EXERCISE Take a walk, a run or do whatever kind of exercise is calming to you.
STRETCH Change the position you are in and stretch. There are many Yoga stretches that are helpful to work into your daily routine.
JOURNAL Write about what you are going through and then shred it or burn it. You might also write about ways you have successfully handled things in the past.
VISUALIZE Picture an ocean. As the waves come toward the shore take a slow breath in. As the waves recede let your breath out slowly. Repeat.
RELEASE Progressive Relaxation is a technique that involves tensing and releasing major muscle groups. Beginning with your toes tense them for 5 counts and then release for 30 counts. Next arch your feet tensing them for 5 seconds and then release for 30. Continue working your way up to your neck and your head focusing on each area of your body.
FOCUS Inhale slowly focusing in your mind on the word relax. Exhale slowly focusing on the word calm. Repeat.
GRATITUDE Find something that you are grateful for. Pick something new every time you do this. You might write it down describing it in detail. It could be as simple as gratitude for the sunshine on a beautiful day.
Miriam Vinton MA, LPC