When things begin to add on, build up, and become overwhelming, the most important thing is to keep your head cool. Becoming overwhelmed and stressed will always have negative outcomes, however they happen according to each person. When I get overwhelmed, I shut down, and when I shut down, nothing gets done, and the stress just builds. Here are a few tips I’ve discovered that have helped ease some of the stress for me, and they just might help you.
- Take a quick nap, but do it like this. Lay flat on the floor facing up and prop your legs up onto a chair that has the perfect height that allows a 90 degree angle at your knees. This way of laying allows the blood to circulate and takes pressure off your back.
- Go outside on a nice day and stand in a generally empty area surrounded by natural things (trees, grass, birds, etc.). Stand perfectly straight and face the wind, if there is any. Close you eyes and focus on the individual sounds around you. Transfer your hearing to a different thing at a time. Breathe deeply through your nose, breathing in when the wind sweeps by.
- Try yoga, but do it seriously. Make every position count with slow, steady, focused movements. Breathe in between each stretch.
- Listen to your favorite song, or something relaxing, but close your eyes while you do and don’t sing along. Focus on the music intently, listening to the words, the different voices, the different instruments.
- Journal away. Even if what you’re writing is a bunch of ramble that doesn’t make sense, keep writing. Focus on the process of physically putting words on paper. Try to be smooth and continuous.
- Find something to watch, like the leaves on a tree, a squirrel in the park, or even the dust hovering in front of the window. Focus on it completely and study it, making random inquiry of details in your mind.
- Read a book that is absolutely you, something you will enjoy regardless. Read the words slowly and intently, mouthing them or saying them aloud.
- Make a craft you will enjoy making. Set up an area and quietly play background music. Focus completely on the craft, and spend a good amount of time on it, not something that will be done in ten minutes.
Basically, relaxing takes just as much focus as anything else. When you focus yourself on something that represents a peaceful, carefree entity, like nature or an animal or a random craft project, what happens is your brain will forget everything else. You want to establish a sense that the world, for a while, pauses. During this time your mind gets a break and is able to refresh itself. That way, when the world resumes and you return to the things that were stressing you out, you’re not weary and have a greater ability to take it on.