While fall gives us a reason to bundle up and cocoon, the transition from late summer nights to the holiday season can cause more than just a little bit of stress. So in the spirit of deadlines, to-do lists and weekends spent with the family, here are the ways to diffuse and stay calm. After all, with Thanksgiving just a few days away, you’ll want a reason or two to be appreciate what life’s got to offer.
Cut the Caffeine
We know: the idea of confronting the day without that extra morning, afternoon or evening cup of coffee can seem like a reason to be stressed in itself, but considering caffeine raises your heart rate and can give you the jitters, you may want to cut the intake if relaxation’s the name of the game. Not that you have to kibosh caffeine completely, but if you want to sleep easier or avoid feeling anxious, replace the coffee with herbal tea and help your body breathe.
Walk It Out
There’s something to be said for alone time, and while you may not think you have a minute to spare to restore your sanity, a ten or 15-minute stroll can help keep you balanced. True, it won’t abolish that list of assignments, but even a brief change of scenery can help you re-charge so you can take on those projects with newfound zest. And once those projects are done, we all know that stress with melt away with them.
True, your first instinct may be to roll your eyes and judge us on obviousness, but you’ll notice that in moments of anxiety or panic, the last thing you’re doing is taking deep breaths. Not breathing properly can cause your heart rate to race, can leave your stomach in knots and can make you feel dizzy or faint (think about the last time you cried really hard), so in moments of stress or meltdown, go to a quiet place, close your eyes and take five or ten deep breaths. Yes, you’ll still have to address the problem, but you’ll be able to take it on without panicking, snapping or feeling at wit’s end.
Solitary confinement may seem like a luxury, but if you’re gearing up for a mountain of projects or days of family festivities, it’s wise to reserve some time for yourself just to unwind and take a break from day-to-day pandemonium. And while you may think that a morning, night or afternoon away from your work, studies or family seems unrealistic, remember that even an hour can help you re-balance. And by taking some time with a book, a TV show or even catching up on your favourite blogs, you’re re-affirming to yourself that it’s possible to rest, relax and re-centre. Nice knowing you, stress.