Some people just do not have enough hours in the day. From work to school to extracurricular activities, they sometimes see themselves coming while they’re going. With practically every hour of the day dedicated to an activity, it is easy to see how stress can become a concern. Getting rid of some activities may not be an option for you, depending upon their importance. Luckily, there are stress relievers that can help busy people like yourself cope with the stresses of living in a fast paced society.
Meditation and Prayer
Through meditation and prayer, you can gain an inner calm with only a few minutes a day. Both encompass clearing your mind and getting your body in a relaxed state. They also help to focus the mind, steering it away from stressful thoughts. With prayer, there is the added benefit of communing with a higher power, for example listening to the Qur’an is both meditative and relaxing. This helps bring a feeling of peace and comfort which in turn can help you manage your stress levels.
Taking deep breaths calms the nerves and relaxes the mind and body. With each breath, you decrease the tension in your muscles. The best thing about breathing exercises is that you can do them anywhere and at any time. You can even add breathing exercises to your meditation time to help encourage relaxation. All you need is a short moment, and you can go back to maneuvering through your schedule.
Music has an effect on mood. It can bring about the strongest emotions or relax the mind. The next time you are driving your car, turn on the classical music station. Keep the volume low and listen to the melody. No one says you have to become a classical music aficionado. Just let your ears do the work and enjoy the sound. It can be very relaxing.
Take a Walk
There is nothing like physical exertion to help relieve stress, and even a gentle stroll can encourage feelings of peace. Though it may be difficult to fit a 30-minute workout into your busy schedule, walking can be a good alternative if you are pressed for time. Walk around the office. Take a walk at lunch. Use the stairs whenever possible. Not only will you feel less stress, you’ll get a decent bit of exercise as well.
Just say No
If your schedule is so heavy that soothing strategies aren’t working for you, it may be time to let some things go. Learn to say “no” when you realize that you cannot handle any more activities. Be honest with yourself about the tasks that currently fill your time. Swallow your pride and let some things go. Now may not be the right time to work, take night classes, and volunteer with charities or parent groups. Nothing prevents you from picking up those activities in the future — delaying certain commitments now may create the time to pick them up at a later date.
Stress can have long-term effects on your physical, mental and emotional state, not to mention how it can affect your loved ones. Taking the time to relax is essential for your health, and those around you will appreciate your efforts to learn ways to cope with your stress. Stop, breathe and take it easy. How will you unwind today?