If you're reading this it's because you're stressed out and anxious and you want to fix it. News flash, I get stressed out very easily and my naturopath confirmed it when she tested my hormones. Just the act of sitting behind the wheel in bumper to bumper traffic is enough to ruin my day. With that being said, identifying what triggers stress is the first step. I put together a list of activities that work for me. They are my favourite activities to relax, de-stress and feel whole again. Give these a try and if there's anything on this list that doesn't appeal to you, that's okay. Just focus on what makes you happy so that you can feel balanced once more.
Meditate & Breathe
Just yesterday I was sitting around the dining room table with my best girlfriend and her mother, having a great time and laughing, when I started to feel my heart beating fast in my chest. Something had triggered my stress and next thing I know, my best friend was giving me tips on how to relax. She said, "place your hand on your heart, bare skin to bare skin, close your eyes, breathe and think of a happy memory. Open your eyes when your breathing is back to normal and you feel settled again." You gotta admit it's a really good tip and it works. Try it the next time you're feeling off and let me know what you think.
Alternatively, Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths and clear your mind. Sit in a quiet space and focus on breathing in and out.
A while back I went through a couple of months where I was so anxious and stressed that I threw my back out due to the tension I was holding in my shoulders. I’d wake up in the mornings and head on over to my gym, which has a sauna that no one uses. I'd lay on my back and close my eyes and daydream about living in Paris with Geoff and being carefree and enjoying life. The fact that sauna was empty helped me relax and daydreaming got me to the point where the stress actually started to melt away. It took a few sessions of doing this but it did work!
I’m an introvert and I love being alone. It refuels me and makes me aware of what my needs and wants are so I need alone time to feel whole again. If you’re always out in the company of others, you might benefit from some me time to declutter your mind. Set aside some time to unwind by yourself.
Do your favourite activity
Everyone has their favourite way to unwind. Geoff’s go-to de-stressing activity is Playstation, though he also loves ping pong, squash and volleyball. I on the other hand love watching movies, painting my nails, doing my makeup, redecorating my house, aromatherapy, Pinterest, reading, being inspired and chilling with my besties Diana and Michael. My activities are a little all over the map compared to Geoff, but then again, it works for me.
Curl up with a cup of coffee
This is one of my favourite things to do at the end of the day. If it’s close to bedtime, I like to have a decaf cup of Nespresso. My favourites are the lungo cups like Vivalto Lungo, Envivo Lungo and Rosabaya blends, but every now and again I'll have an espresso, along with a cookie or a bit of chocolate. Something about sinking into the couch with a hot cup of coffee always relaxes me.
Turn off social media
I find it so curious that social media is the cause of anxiety and stress for so many of us, celebrities included. After the recent passing of my best friends father, the last thing I wanted to do was be on social media; which is hard because it’s a big part of my job! I learned that it’s totally okay to have a little Instagram detox and that your followers will still be there when you get back. What was more important for me, was to be-in-the-now with my family and not worry about how many likes my last photo got.
Listen to music
Turn on your favourite artist and blare it on the speakers and have a dance party! I have such a deep connection to music thanks to my dad, who was always blasting his favourite bands when I was a kid. Even know I’ll turn on my music and dance and sing (both horribly I might add) when I need to get rid of that stressed-out energy.
Take a walk
A brisk walk outdoors will clear your head and put things into prospective. My old job was at a television network and it was one of the most stressed out environments I’d ever been in! It wasn’t just me, it was everyone from managers and coordinators alike, who were all very vocal about their distain for the company! I noticed a lot of my colleagues would go for walks to clear their minds during their breaks and I started doing the same. A little bit of fresh air always seems to help.
Call a friend
My best girlfriend and I have been friends for 25 years. We know each other so well that we joke that our talks are like the equivalent to a $190/ hour long therapy session. Talking or hanging out can be just as relaxing as meditation when it’s with your best pals.
Animals are known to be therapeutic and calming and I couldn’t agree more. Anytime I feel upset or stressed all I have to do is hang out with my cats and I automatically feel better. My motto is “go hug a cat”. LOL