The kids need to get to school on time, you have to run a thousand errands, and there just isn’t enough time in the day. Are you feeling stressed? Quite simply, you should be because life isn’t easy, especially when other people need your attention. The thing is because there aren’t enough hours in a day, it feels as if there is no time to relax. Even a Netflix binge at the end of a tough 24-hour is out of the question.
So, those things that other do to relieve stress aren’t going to be on your to-do list. Well, exercising or going for a massage might make the top ten, but you won’t tick them off anytime soon. No, what you need is to eradicate tension without leaving the confines of your home. Yep, it is the dream, and yes, it is possible.
Here are the six ways to make it happen. For a bonus, the following should work in five minutes or less.
Cook A Meal
As stressful as it sounds, preparing food is very relaxing once the heavy lifting is out of the way. In fact, lots of people find chopping onions and sautéing vegetables pretty cathartic. The trick is to turn up the volume on the radio, pour a glass of vino, and take your time. Yes, the dish has to be on the table when the kids get home from school, but you can leave it to simmer for hours if need be. Actually, slow cooking a piece of meat in a gravy sauce is as delicious as it is relaxing. All you have to do is use up the leftovers and throw them in a pan with some stock. Then, turn the heat down low and check on it every couple of hours to make sure. Voila! Does that sound like a tense day in the kitchen?
Grab A Quick Burst Of Energy
Sometimes, waiting for a meal to cook is too long. After all, a factor in the build-up of stress is a lack of energy. When the muscles and the brain don’t have enough fuel, cortisol begins to form. Once these levels reach a certain limit, it can feel as if your head is about to explode. Thankfully, some foods are readymade and contain the nutrients the vital organs need to work efficiently. You’re going to love this – chocolate is a prime example. Yep, the brown stuff you only like to eat sparingly is a nerve calmer. According to reports, it regulates the metabolism as well as the stress hormone we have previously mentioned. Always go for dark chocolate with over >70% cocoa for health reasons.
But not just any old rubbish. No, only the best will do for those of you who need to calm down within the next 300 minutes. There is a reason the poms drink it like it’s going out of fashion! That motivation is called L-Theanine, a chemical which does something remarkable. Studies prove this element helps to relieve anger and reduce the possibility of mood swings. So, instead of going purple with rage, you can go green with relaxation instead. Sure, it’s not the colour of stress relief – what is? – but L-Theanine is found in green tea and herbal remedies. Therefore, a cup of this emerald coloured goodness should make you feel at ease instantly. If you use a teabag, leave it in the mug so that the chemicals continue to absorb into the water. Herbal drinkers should pour out the bits before taking a sip.
Play An Instrument
Letting your fingers tickle the ivories or strum a set of guitar strings is incredibly relaxing. As soon as the tones begin to sound from the instrument, the mind drifts off into another world. Plus, experienced players can jam on autopilot so there is no need to concentrate. All you have to do is let the equipment do the work and follow the notes on a musical journey. If that’s too pretentious, just let your hands do as they please and see it where it takes you! For the people who are saying “but I can’t play”, you can learn. Guitar lessons are very affordable these days, as are most musical lessons, and the instructor will come to your home. Remember the immortal words of fake Jim Morrison in Wayne’s World 2: “Book them, and they will come.”
Okay, so you may not be inside all of the time, but you’ll still be on the property! Wandering out into the garden is a great way to gain perspective for many reasons. Firstly, staying inside all day can encourage negative thoughts because you’re cooped up and feel suffocated. So, getting some fresh air feels like a form of relief. Secondly, stress usually builds up when the brain harbours negative thoughts. Going out into the Great Outdoors helps to reverse the process as there is a lot of natural light. Without light, it’s easy to feel down in the dumps and depressed.
There’s no need to hit the gym to release tension when you can do it from the comfort of your bedroom. In truth, you can do it from any room in the house as long as there is plenty of space. Please don’t fall into the trap of thinking you have to flog your body to feel the benefit. Often, the best form of exercise is the low-intensity form because it targets excess fat. Running, for example, as opposed to walking, burns carbs. If you don’t know where to begin, there are plenty of home workout routines online. Or, you can build up a sweat by scaling the stairs throughout the day. Anyone that wants a less active method should consider meditation. By sitting down and focusing on nothing in particular, you can forget about the rigours of life. Yoga is an excellent way to mix both exercise and meditation.
What do you think? Are you willing to give them a try?