Sometimes life gets the better of us. Too much to do, not enough time and we don’t seem to be getting any closer to our goals. We aren’t even sure if we’re going in the right direction anymore! There’s no need to wait until the weekend or your next Christmas break, here are some things you can do right now to stop, let go of stress and not only feel better in minutes, but also find renewed energy and productivity.
Take a few deep breaths while fully focusing on your breathing. Imagine that you’re inhaling life, vitality, joy, creativity and anything else you need in that moment. Exhale your tension, worries and fatigue. Sounds too simple? Try it, you’ve got nothing to lose. You can do it anywhere, at any time, and the people around you don’t even have to know what you’re doing. Aim for at least five deep breaths and see if you feel differently. You’ll be surprised!
It doesn’t matter if you don’t feel like smiling at all, just hold your smile for a few minutes and notice what happens. Researchers from the University of Kansas have found that even fake smiles can help reduce stress. We usually smile when our mind sends the signal that something good is happening to us, but it works in reverse, too. Your smile sends a signal to your mind that everything is ok in your world and your stress starts to dissolve.
When you exercise, your body releases endorphins, which reduce your perception of pain and trigger positive feelings in your body. Even if you don’t feel like you have a lot of time, try a few yoga poses or going for a brisk walk.
Sunshine makes the world seem brighter. It’s even better if you can go to a park or a beach nearby. Not surprisingly, science confirms that natural environment contributes to the feeling of happiness and the happiest locations, as found by one UK study, are marine and coastal areas.
These are effective ways to reduce stress quickly, but you can’t rely on the quick fix indefinitely. If you’re stressed, tired and nothing brings you joy, what will ultimately help is taking some time out and immersing yourself in nurturing, revitalising activities.
Our Inner Joy retreat will offer you a sacred space to reconnect with yourself and renew your energy, while we take care of everything else, including opportunities to move your body, connect with nature in a happiness-inducing beach location, receive mindfulness guidance and try some nourishing vegetarian food.