It's National Stress Awareness Day and with busy lives and a lot going on around us, everyone can feel stressed at times. Suzette Jones, Diocesan Health and Wellbeing Adviser, shares ways to help.
Stress affects how we feel, think or behave; it affects how our bodies work. It can impact our sleep and appetites; we may have difficulty concentrating with racing thoughts.
During our working day there may be times of pressure or worry so looking after our own wellbeing has never been so important. The use of easy techniques can give an opportunity to loosen the grip of habitual, automatic reactions to stress and relieve tension.
Take a break from your work to really relax rather than simply to pause. Instead of having coffee, try taking a short walk or just sit quietly renewing yourself.
When you walk from A to B, leave behind what you haven’t done, leave in front what you have to do and come into the present moment.
Feel the way your body moves, your feet upon the ground; smell the air, feel the breeze, touch the day. Acknowledge your thoughts, your feelings, and your place on this earth.
At the end of your workday, try retracing the day’s activities. Acknowledge and congratulate yourself for what you’ve accomplished. Then make a list for tomorrow; you’ve done enough today.
Try changing out of your work/day clothes when you get home. This simple act may help you make a smoother transition into your next “role”.
Greet each of your family members or the people you live with. Take a moment to look into their eyes.
Try taking five to ten minutes being still. Feel what it is like to enjoy the quiet space of your home, your environment.
Breathe around your hands. Using your right finger, trace around the fingers on your left hand. Try doing it in time with your breathing using the words – ‘this breath’. Use the word ‘this’ as you breathe in and trace the upward stroke of your finger; and ‘breath’ as you breathe out on the downward stroke. Trace one hand, then the other.