Your instant stress busters…
I don't do stress very often, but I have been lately, and these three Stress Busters never fail to help me back into a more useful state. Try them now (no ones watching…)
- Drop your shoulders - push both shoulders up to your ears as far as you can, hold for a moment and then drop them. Under stress our mind starts racing, our shoulders tense and our lower jaw goes tight. Relax your shoulders and your mind will slow down. Wiggle your lower jaw and release tension there too. This is another way of slowing down that inner voice.
- Tidy something - when you feel out of control then a good way of feeling in control is to tidy something up. Clean out a drawer, weed a file, clear your desk etc. This simple step of controlling something will remind you that you can get back in charge of what is going on. So, you know that clutter that you've been meaning to tackle for ages - now's the time…
- Move - get up and walk, go outside (pretend to smoke), make a cup of tea, wash your hands - or anything that gets your body moving. Stress tells your body to fight or flight. By making a series of small movements you answer this need without either running away or beating up your colleagues!
Bonus stress buster - Start to breathe - here's a way of breathing that will have a longer-term effect on your stress. Find some fresh air and then push all the air out of your lungs. Really push from the bottom up. Breathe in normally, and then repeat.
Most people are only using the top third to half of their lungs and this means their bodies are operating on low grade fuel, making it easy to feel overwhelmed and out of control.
Breathing this way means you only have to concentrate on emptying your lungs, they will refill automatically with clean, fresh fuel. You only need to do this three or four times to notice the benefit; it calms you down and gives your brain more oxygen to work with. Have a go.
So, this week: if you find yourself doing stress then do something different, anything different…
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