Even the most happy-go-lucky people run into bad days – not that I’m saying that’s particularly me, because Lord knows I definitely hit my wit’s end. My point being, we all experience some not so desirable days/situations, and we all search for ways to alleviate the frustration. Everyone has different ways they like to destress, but here’s generally how I cope with my less than perfect days.
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Running has always proven to be a huge stress reliever when it comes to either anxiety/panic or simply feeling frustrated. I could throw a lot of science at you, but for right now I’ll give you my completely unprofessional explanation of why I like to run as a quick fix: you know when you’re upset or anxious and your heart feels like it could pound out of your chest? Have you ever felt like taking deep breaths doesn’t exactly provide the relief + serenity you want? Now think about when you run – your heart rate gets pretty elevated, right? I find that the cool down process from running makes the pre-panic/emotional heart pounding go away as well (if that makes any sense at all). Plus, the exercise is great for you anyway (:
I usually do intermittent walking/sprinting when I’m on the treadmill, and I listen to a playlist that makes me feel like I can just punch the day in the face. Here’s my playlist when I need to show my day who’s boss:
TAKE A BATH
You don’t have to use bubbles, but 1) they’re simply just more fun, and 2) if you choose an aromatherapeutic foam bath, it can provide a little bit more relief. Currently, my favorite bubble bath is the Vanilla + Patchouli “Comfort” Aromatherapy scent from Bath + Body Works. So soothing!
During my baths, I generally like to turn on my acoustic playlist:
Tom Haverford said it best: treat yo’self
(I definitely say this too much). But double that bubble bath as a spa time. Light a candle. Wear a face mask (my personal favorite is the Karuna hydrating sheet face mask!) Dim the lights. If you took my advice about the run, massage out any particularly tense/sore muscles (Way of Will has a great post-training massage oil I like to use!) Shut out the world and focus on your breathing. Meditate. Recite some positive, ego-boosting self mantras. Here are some sayings to get you started:
- “No negative energy formed against me shall prosper.”
- “I love challenges and what I learn from overcoming them.”
- “Each step is taking me to where I want to be.”
- “I am abundant in all things that bring me joy.”
- “I am worth of love and I am full of love for others.”
- “I love to be happy. Happiness is a wonderful energy that inspires and uplifts my spirit. I will smile whenever I can. I will acknowledge each small moment that I can be grateful for. I accept each and every blessing and having an awesome day” (a little cheesy, but sometimes you just gotta speak the goodness into being!)
- “Fall in love with taking care of yourself – body, mind, and spirit.”
Additionally, count your blessings. It’s such a cliche concept, but there really are so many blessings in our lives, even when it feels like everything might be wrong. Take the “you time” and use it to remember the good, even when it feels difficult to do.
REMEMBER WHO’S IN CONTROL
Life can suck sometimes – and odds are a lot of the things that go wrong are out of our control. Even if they’re a result of our actions, whatever comes of it ultimately ends up being out of our hands and all we can do is realize it is what it is and turn our eyes to the One who is in control. Although I believe that God does not cause distress, nor does He cause bad things to happen to “teach us a lesson,” I do believe that He uses situations to make us stronger in the end – both as an individual and as a follower of Christ. In my post An Open Letter to the Broken Spirit, I explain that I see God as someone who never tells us that we can’t hurt and that we can’t be upset – simply that we let Him be there to comfort us. My favorite way to seek His comfort is to turn on my worship playlist and simply talk to Him – I let Him know what’s bothering me (sometimes it’s just good to say, even if He technically already knows what’s on my mind), I pray solutions into being, I thank Him for who He is, I sing, I sit in silence and simply allow myself to feel His presence – by the end, I feel like a burden has been lifted and I am reminded that everything will be alright.
GET A GOOD LAUGH IN
Laughter truly is the best medicine. Watch something comical to get your mind off of things and to start getting those good mood feelings back. Some of my favorite funny shows include:
- New Girl
- The Office
- Parks + Recreation
- Psych (on Amazon Prime)
- Baby Daddy
- Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
It’s lame, but sometimes I just kind of stand in awe of the tea section anytime I’m at Walmart. I swear it gets larger every time I go. The combinations of types of teas + herbs that are good for different ailments + health concerns is astounding. When it comes to stressful day, I personally love any of the Yogi Stress Reliever in Lavender Honey, Positive Energy in Sweet Tangerine, or Perfect Energy in Vanilla Spice! But any tea that suits your fancy is fine. There’s just something about sipping on it (especially in this cold weather) that feels so soothing.
DO SOME YOGA
Whenever I was actively involved in yoga, it was an incredible stress reliever. It made it evident that I store so much stress in my joints and that I breathe so shallowly when I’m stressed. Yoga allows me to get rid of so much physical tension + breathe more deeply and effectively.
GET A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP
What can’t sleep fix, honestly? Okay, well, it doesn’t necessarily make your problem vanish, but it does help you feel better + approach life with a clearer mind. Here are some things I use to ensure I get a good, deep sleep:
- This Works’ Deep Sleep Pillow Spray (yet another amazing FabFitFun product!)
- Bath + Body Works’ Sleep Aromatherapy lotion in Detoxing Black Chamomile
- Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides (sleep promotion is one of it’s many benefits!)
- Sleep promoting teas:
- Yogi Soothing Caramel Bedtime Tea
- Yogi Regular Bedtime Tea (lavender + chamomile)
- Celestial Seasonings’ Sleepytime Tea collection (they have so many – I currently have the wellness and detox teas, but they have some geared towards throat and sinus soothing as well if you’re feeling under the weather!)
What are your favorite de-stressing solutions?? Let me know in the comments!