Life can be intense these days with things that constantly require our attention be it our phones, jobs, families, hobbies and everything else in-between. Finding time to unwind and take a few moments to ourselves can seem impossible. Fortunately, it doesn’t take as long to relax as we might think it does and the little things really count.
Try one of these stress busting techniques for the workplace once a day for a week when you are feeling fatigued, frazzled or anything else unpleasant. Notice if you feel calmer, more focused or happier as a result. Feel free to set the intent of the buster with a thought of taking a small time for yourself to rest or whatever comes to mind.
Install some nature:
Research has shown that nature bathing can reduce stress levels and inflammation in the body. Furthermore recreating some of the abundance of nature can help support these actions be it 5 minutes of listening to forest sounds, focusing on a window view of nature from your office, walking out to a nearby park and just taking in the sights, smells and sounds that surround you.
Close your eyes:
We are so busy typing, talking, researching and generally doing that it’s hard to let go of that activity. Closing the eyes can help us tune out some of the business of our day. Resting with our feet up on a chair or horizontally gives our whole body a reset.
Research is showing that moving every 30-60 minutes can be protective against the harmful effects of sitting all day. Walking around gets your blood pumping, brings you back into your body and pulls your eyes away from the screen. While you’re at it grab a glass of water.
We’ve heard it all before, but the importance of breathing can’t be understated, all breaths are not created equal. Ever notice how when you’re stressed your breath becomes shallow? Tuning into the breath without judgement and just noticing where you feel the breath the most, the quality of the sensations of air moving, temperature changes, expansion and contraction can bring you out of your mind and back into your body.
Full body exercises:
If you’re fit enough and have had proper instruction, the following moves a few times a day in the office can really help to get your blood pumping. Furthermore moving at least every hour helps counteract the damaging effects of sitting. Jumping jacks, a few burpees, plank, some yoga sun salutations can all be done in the space that your body would take up laying down. Not only will you be reducing stress levels but you’ll also protect yourself from the health risks of inactivity.
Acknowledge circular thoughts and present feelings:
Without realizing it, we often have a loop of thoughts and emotions circling in our heads about anything from arguments and judgements to fantasies and replays. Taking a few moments to observe the feeling or/and thought, accept that it is there and resolve to do something about it when the time is more appropriate can free our minds from the looping task and allow us to focus on what’s at hand.
If you’ve celebrated Thanksgiving and took a moment to be thankful for what you have, you practiced gratitude.Studies are showing there is no reason to limit that expression of gratitude to one weekend a year. Practicing gratitude counteracts the pressure to obtain more and the “ I’ll be happy when” state that we spend most of our days in.