The six lettered word that undoubtedly will affect us all in a period or in some way in our lives. Recently, let’s just say we’ve got better acquainted and we’re the closest of friends we’ve ever been! However, not in a good way. This is something, that no matter how hard I tried to maintain or keep at bay it is something that has severely affected me. To the point where my health has been affected and I have been advised rest for 2 weeks or more. I wanted to start 2019 on a positive note by proactively looking into stress a little deeper and sharing my tips so far on how to deal with the stress the best we can.
Definition: “Stress is the feeling of being under too much mental or emotional pressure. Pressure turns into stress when you feel unable to cope” (NHS)
Once your body’s “fight or flight” response is activated an array of symptoms start to occur. This can be anything from your heart racing, your breath quickening, and your muscles tensing ready for action. According to Google, “This response was designed to protect your body in an emergency by preparing you to react quickly”. However, things turn serious when this is a repeated action. Again, consulting the wisdom of Google “But when the stress response keeps firing, day after day, it could put your health at serious risk”.
So why do we do it?
There are multiple factors involved depending on our contextual situation. This can range from school, to work pressure, Uni, exam stress or it can appear in any area of our lives. The area I repeatedly found difficult to maintain was “exam stress” now this is not just a category for adolescents or those in uni, we all take exams in some points in our lives, sometimes to level ourselves up in our jobs.
But how do we combat it?
Repeatedly, nowadays all we hear is “self-care is so important ” or “take time for yourself” with profits in the beauty industry sky-rocketing as this relatively new areas has become one of the latter trends of 2018. Now, I don’t know about you but whenever I saw “Himalayan detox salts” or “relaxing bath salts” whilst perusing Cult Beauty or my holy grail site The Covetuer I always questioned their use, or whether they were worth it? But then I soon realised that they are a tiny part of a much larger and important picture called ‘relaxation”.
My tips so far for relaxation when recovering from stress or stress-related symptoms;
It’s all about the little things – whether that is your Himalayan bath salts, which I must say I have bought and had an “ohhh I get it now” moment. My favourite is https://www.cultbeauty.co.uk/therapie-himalayan-detox-salts.html which are great at £10 which last a long time. My favourite routine is to pop Suits on my laptop, spray some Lavender Aromatherapy oil and relax in a hot bath. These salts are a great little addition.
Music –Music has been and always will be a large part of my life. Regardless of genre, I love most music and when I don’t listen to it, it does affect me. I need that emotion written into the melodic chimes of Piano or relaxing percussion hidden in undertones of a song. During periods of stress or anxiety, I have two usual playlists I go for on Spotify. The first is called “Stress Relief” – (linked below ) and the other is called “Yoga and Meditation” (also linked below)
Food – another crucial and key part. I know that if I eat better more legumes, nuts and leafy greens I will feel better in the long run. That said, sometimes comfort food is the best calmer when you recognise the taste and it takes you back. I love to cook, so sometimes there is nothing better than whipping up some comfort food. Particular favourite being from the UK is a plant-based Sheppard’s Pie. Make sure you also don’t restrict yourself too by having some of your fave dark chocolate or a G&T with a close friend or partner.
Digital Detox – Sometimes the best thing to do is to just switch it off and I love to just leave it hidden beneath some books away in my room and to forget about it for a day.
Friends and Family – To recover from stress it is never an instantaneous thing, so surround yourself with the ones you love and who love you. Even if it takes a good cry or a laugh about a shared past time, sometimes that’s all it takes.
So to wrap this blog post up… sorry for the ramble. Take time for yourself otherwise further down the line it can affect your health, don’t make the mistake I made by putting your health at risk. Even if it’s just 30 mins a day to set aside, it may make the world of difference. So chat, laugh, cry, relax and cook and in one of those things they may just take some stress away.
Leave me any recommendations for products or tips that have helped you relax or manage your stress, I would love to know!
Happy New Year and See you in the next blog post!