If you often get stressed, you might become even more stressed by all of the things that you’re required to do to eliminate stress—people tell you to find a new hobby, keep a journal, take time off work, etc. Although some of these things are helpful, suggestions like this are usually just another thing on your already long “to-do”list and end up causing more stress. The truth is, there are many stress-busting techniques that are very subtle, yet effective and can be implemented on a daily basis. If you’re looking for a stress-free way to simplify your life, there are a few daily habits you can easily adopt to help eliminate stress from your life and keep you emotionally healthy.
1. Just Laugh
If you are busy and stressed, you might not have as much time for entertainment as you like—but you need to take time every day to laugh. Enjoy your favorite sitcom or hang out with friends that tend to make you laugh. Laughter can improve your circulation and cause your muscles to relax, which can greatly reduce the physical symptoms of stress. Even looking at funny articles on Buzzfeed during your break at lunch will help you to unwind and think about something frivolous that won’t stress you out.
2. Move Your Body
You might already have a normal exercise routine, but if you are working your body too hard, it could be causing stress. While exercises that are high-cardio or intensive can be good for your body, sometimes you need to slow it down. Take a few days a week to take a break from the intensive workouts and exercise your body in a more care-free way. This could be as simple as walking your dog, swimming, yoga or working out to your favorite music. Any physical exercise will increase the production of endorphins in your brain and will enhance your mood and make you feel better. If you’ve already blocked out time in your life for exercise, changing up the types of exercises you do won’t add any extra time to your schedule.
3. Simply Say No
Often, stress is heavily related to trying to do too much. If you are one of those people who love to please others, then you must learn to put yourself first and “say no”to those who ask too much of you. You may initially feel upset about doing this, but you will soon see your stress dissipate when you simplify your life. You might protest this idea by saying, “there is nothing in my life I can drop right now.”The truth is that if you can prioritize you will see that there are some things of less importance that are causing unneeded stress. Simplicity is the key to a stress free life, and if you don’t drop something soon, you might have to end up dropping everything when you get too overwhelmed and break down.
4. Meditation Station
You might think, “I don’t have time to meditate”, despite the many known benefits! If you believe it will take too much time out of your day to sit and practice—this isn’t the case. Using an app like Chanter can help you make the most of the time you do have to meditate — maybe five minutes when you wake up, or ten minutes during your lunch break. This app, using the NeuroSky MindWave Mobile or MindWave EEG headset, gives you instant audio feedback about your mental state while you meditate. When your meditation level changes, the tone of a sound loop changes accordingly. Chanter is easy to use–and you set the length of your session, pick your favorite mantra sound and you’re ready to go. After each session a chart is generated, which shows you your meditation level and progress over time via your mental state. With this easy to use EEG solution you can really track your meditation levels and make your meditation time more meaningful.
5. Focus on Others
When you are feeling stressed, sitting alone and thinking about your problems is not going to help calm you down. Get involved with friends and family or consider volunteering your time to some worthwhile cause such as helping out at your local animal shelter. These things will provide a distraction from your worries and help you deal with the struggles everyone has in life. If you don’t think you have enough time in your life for other people, you truly are overbooked!
These tips should help you to relax and enjoy your life on a daily basis, not just whenever you get time. Stressful situations happen to everyone, but you should feel secure in knowing you can handle whatever life throws at you by implementing a few easy practices. Take time to take care of your mind and body, simplify your life, reach out to others, and just have fun. If you think you don’t have time for these things, perhaps you’re taking life too seriously.
AUTHOR BIO: This article was written by Dixie Somers, a freelance writer who loves to write about business, finance, women’s interests, or home and family. She lives in Arizona with her husband and three beautiful daughters. Any readers looking for EEG solutions to help with meditation, the Chanter app can be downloaded on the NeuroSky website.