The past week has been eventful, to say the least. A drawn out election, rising COVID-19 cases all over the country, and the navigation of a continuing pandemic have created an ongoing battle with stress.
In order to relax, it’s important to put your well being at the top of the list. Make an active choice to do the right thing for your mind and body, even if that means going against your base impulses. Here are a few tips that can help you relax and take care of yourself this week:
Set a time to stress out
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Experiencing an overflow of emotions, even if they’re positive, can leave us feeling drained, like we’re waiting for the other shoe to drop. These concerns can take up brain space and consume large portions of our days. It’s cliché to say “don’t stress out,” instead, try to limit the amount of stressing out that you do, even if it sounds silly. Set up 15 to 30 minutes a day where you can think about what stresses you out — perhaps writing it down or making a plan to address these issues — and then try your best to let them go. If you’re someone whose routines are easily disrupted, avoid doing this in the early morning or late at night, since that can interrupt your productivity and sleep.
Disconnect from devices
Drawn out elections meant that most of us spent the majority of our days glued to the news and our smart phones. While you may be happy now seeing all of those videos of people celebrating and dancing on the streets, it’s important to cut the feeling of dependency to your phone. Now that there won’t be any breaking news at any minute (hopefully) you can focus on spending your time more wisely.
Practice breathing exercises
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Breathing exercises are a great way of dispersing anxious feelings, at least temporarily. If you find yourself overthinking in the early morning or with a pit in your stomach when trying to go to bed, focus on your breathing. If you want some visual aid, you can visit websites like this is sand, galaxy weaving and more.
Stay in the present
2020 is the year of uncertainty. This won’t magically change with a new president or a new year. While it is stressful to think about all the changes that are coming, it’s important to cultivate your relationships and to look for activities that make you feel happy and fulfilled. These small achievements will help you feel more positive and will help you stay rooted in the present moment.