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18 Stress Reducing Techniques You Can Fit in During Your Day

18 Stress Reducing Techniques You Can Fit in During Your Day

Stress is a real thing that we all experience throughout our lifetimes. School, social life, work, all of it can be stressful and crazy, so sometimes you just need some good stress reducing techniques to help you get through the day and relax afterward. Stress and anxiety are both natural, so don’t worry too much if they pop up now and then, but when it does, we have some tips and tricks on how to manage and reduce your stress during a busy day.

Contents

1. Exercise

2. Yoga

3. Go on a walk

4. Get a massage

5. Stretch

6. Journal your day

7. Gratitude writing

8. Listening to music

9. Aromatherapy

10. Coloring

11. Do a puzzle

12. Take a bath

13. Meditation

14. Body scan

15. Use your hands

16. Stress-relieving foods

17. Stress-relieving teas

18. Take supplements

Key Points

  • The daily rigors of work and weekdays can take a toll on your mental and physical health.
  • There are lots of little ways to reduce stress that you can work into your routine.
  • Reducing stress often comes down to a change of scenery, a bit of grounding, or just some self care.

1. Exercise

  • 10-30 minutes

Whether it is just a short dance break in your office or a trip to the local gym, exercise is a great way to help you destress, and the best part is that it is fully customizable! The physical stress that you put on your body when you exercise helps to relieve any mental stress and lower stress hormones like cortisol. The end of a workout releases endorphins which help to lessen pain and if done regularly, exercise can also help to improve your sleep quality.

Things like biking, yoga, walking, running, dancing, and going to the gym are all good forms of exercise. Things like running and walking, where there are repetitive movements of larger muscle groups, help to relieve mental stress more than those that use several different muscles, especially if you are just taking a short break and going right back to work. (1)

2. Yoga

  • 15-30 minutes

Although it is exercise, arts like yoga and tai chi are especially great stress reducing techniques on their own. Both arts are meant to join your body and mind as well as enhance your mood when you are feeling down. Even just a quick 5-minute yoga session in your living room or next to your desk will help lower your stress hormones, your blood pressure, and your heart rate so that you can return to your day feeling refreshed. Yoga specifically has also been proven to increase the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in your body which is a neurotransmitter meant to help you calm down. (1) 

3. Go on a walk

  • 15 minutes 

Sometimes when you’re working, you just need a quick break and a change of scenery to re-organize your mind. Walks down the hall to the coffee pot, down the street to grab lunch, or around the park outside are all great ways to take a break and reduce your stress. Stress reducing techniques like this are good for when you need to escape your surroundings and find a new place to think for a while. Your walk can last for however long you want and go wherever you wish which makes it an easy technique for any situation. (1)

4. Get a massage

  • 10-30 minutes

Whether you are doing it by yourself or going to a spa, a massage can help to relieve your stress and any tension in your body because of it. Massages, like a body scan, help you realize what parts of your body you are tensing and may be aggravating your stress so that you can actively work on relaxing them and feeling better. If you are massaging yourself, try working out the areas near your shoulders, your hands, and right below your neck. (7)

5. Stretch

  • 10 minutes

After working out, or even after just sitting down for a long time at work, you should get up and stretch your body out to relieve your muscles and make your body feel relaxed again. It doesn’t have to be any particular stretches either, just moving your body in a way that feels comfortable to you can be a great stress reducing technique. (7)

6. Journal your day

  • 10 minutes

Writing in a journal about everything that happened during your day will help you to destress at night and put everything to the side. By writing it all down, you can effectively hand off your responsibilities and any major stressors to deal with the next day and this way you can at least do some stress-free self-care and get a good amount of sleep! Writing and journaling are also proven to be a good stress reducing techniques where you can rant and leave all your negative thoughts and feelings on the page then start new. (6)

7. Gratitude writing

  • 10 minutes

Writing down what you are grateful for and what is going well in your life can help make you feel more positive and uplifted, the opposite of stressed and anxious. Both writing and thinking about things you are grateful for is proven to help relieve stress and anxiety in the body, so putting in a journal or your head a few things you are grateful for in the middle of a stressful week is a great way to calm your body and bring some positivity back into your routine. (1)

8. Listening to music

  • 10 minutes

Music isn’t just something that you listen to in the car on the way to work or at a party, it can be one of the most effective and easiest stress reducing techniques as well. While classical music and other slower-paced instrumental music are the most proven to help destress, your favorite tunes can also help you while working. Music will help to lower your blood pressure and your heart rate so that you can relax and destress a little while working. (1)

9. Aromatherapy

  • 1 minute

 Both lighting a candle and using a diffuser filled with essential oils can help to calm you down during a busy workday or while relaxing at home. (1) These are some scents that you can find candles in or essential oils with strong de-stressing properties:

  • Lavender
  • Chamomile
  • Orange/Orange Blossom
  • Sandalwood
  • Rose
  • Bergamot
  • Geranium

10. Coloring

  • 20 minutes

While you have your relaxing music on in the background and your diffuser running with a calming scent inside, you may want to do an activity to keep from getting bored. Coloring, while it may seem childish, has a strong meditative effect and is proven to help decrease anxiety levels in adults. Geometric patterns especially are great to help destress and unwind after a long day. (2)

11. Do a puzzle

  • 30 minutes - 1 hour

While for some a puzzle may seem too much or too complicated when stressed, for others the distraction from your stressor can help calm you down. By completing, or even just working on, a difficult puzzle you are allowing your mind to take a break and focus on something else for a while rather than be bogged down by the same thing. Studies also show that puzzles often feel nostalgic for people as it reminds them of happy feelings as a child. (8)

12. Take a bath

  • 30 minutes

 Changing your body’s temperature after a long stressful day can help to fully relax your body and force it to restart and calm down. Adding things into your bath like Epsom salts, essential oils, or a bath bomb can also help to create a calming feeling and atmosphere to help you de-stress. (7)

13. Meditation

  • 5-10 minutes

 There are many forms of meditation that you can choose from based on your specific needs. Meditating helps you to focus on the “here and now” and not whatever else may pop into your mind. One of the good meditation stress reducing techniques that you can do anywhere is to repeat a mantra in your mind accompanied by slow, calming breaths to help ingrain it. Another is focusing on a shape in your mind and following a pattern around it in conjunction with your breathing. Most meditation techniques focus specifically on your breathing and the connection between that and your mind. (2)

14. Body Scan

  • 5-10 minutes

 A body scan, also known as progressive muscle relaxation, is a good way to relax your mind and get a grip on what is happening with your body. It is closely related to meditation with deep breathing but focuses on what’s happening in your body rather than your mind. To do a body scan, start with deep, orderly breaths, focus on one part of your body or a muscle group, and then in your mind release any physical tension in that area. Body scans are great stress reducing techniques to boost your awareness of your mind and body connection. (3)

15. Use your hands

  • 10 minutes

Using your hands to distract your mind is a great stress reducing technique. Things like sorting through change, using a stress ball, or braiding your hair can force your mind to focus on something else and destress for a few minutes. (7)

16. Stress-relieving foods

  • 2 minutes

Just as there are several aromas and smells that can help produce a calming effect, there are also lots of foods with stress-relieving properties. Matcha, an alternative to green tea, is rich in the amino acid L-theanine which has powerful stress-relieving properties and can be made into drinks or put into food. Swiss chard is high in magnesium, which you need a lot of when stressed as low levels are associated with anxiety and can be caused by chronic stress.

Garlic is another great stress-reliever, as it can help increase the antioxidant in your body, glutathione. Glutathione is one of the first parts of your body’s defense against stress, so foods (like garlic) that help increase it are good at combatting stress and reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression. (5)

17. Stress-relieving teas

  • 10 minutes

Teas are another great stress reducing technique that you can partake in anywhere. A lot of good stress-relieving teas parallel stress-relieving scents and have strong effects when combined. (4)

A few good teas for stress relief are:  

  • Chamomile tea
    •  Herbal, caffeine-free tea
    • Increases serotonin and melatonin
    • Soothes muscle and headaches caused by anxiety or stress
  • Peppermint
    • Antispasmodic and sedative properties
    •  Good for digestion, especially if caused by stress
    • Soothes tension headaches
    • Natural energy boost
  • Rosehip tea
    • Caffeine-free tea
    • Contains antioxidants and other phytonutrients
    • Because it is an anti-inflammatory agent, it helps to relieve pain

18. Take supplements

  • 2 minutes

Stress-relieving supplements are a good way to get what you need in your body quickly and easily when you are stressed without having to worry about incorporating it into your everyday diet. Some supplements on our list may react negatively with certain medications, so we recommend you double-check with your doctor before taking them! (1)

  • Lemon balm
    •  Minty and good for anxiety
  • Omega-3 fatty acids
    •  Helps to reduce anxiety
  • Ashwagandha
    •  An Ayurvedic medicine for stress and anxiety
  • Green tea
    • Increases serotonin and antioxidant
  • Valerian
    •  Sleep aid
    •  Helps to lower anxiety
  • Kava kava
    • Psychoactive and anti-anxiety
18 Stress Reducing Techniques You Can Fit in During Your Day | Mirra Skincare

Written by Alyssa Thompson

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SOURCES:

  1. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/16-ways-relieve-stress-anxiety#2.-Consider-supplements
  2.  https://www.verywellmind.com/tips-to-reduce-stress-3145195
  3. https://www.health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/six-relaxation-techniques-to-reduce-stress
  4.  https://www.sipsby.com/blogs/functional-herb-spotlights/best-teas-for-stress-anxiety
  5.  https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/stress-relieving-foods
  6. https://www.canr.msu.edu/news/journaling_to_reduce_stress#:~:text=Journaling%20can%20reduce%20stress%20by,self%2Ddoubt%20before%20test%20taking.
  7. https://www.stress.org/15-stress-reducing-activities-you-can-do-at-home-according-to-experts
  8.  https://www.henryford.com/blog/2020/06/fun-calming-activities-relieve-stress

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