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Managing stress : Be good to you!

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It’s hard managing stress. When was the last time you did something for yourself just because? Work, family, commitments, friends, deadlines, projects, partners, pets and home can all demand so much of you, that there’s not much give left. Managing stress and giving back to ourselves can be incredibly difficult.

Guilt of making or taking time for ourselves can mean that health might suffer, how you feel about yourself may not be true and somehow your life has become something that you are puppet in, rather than the conductor. Stress management needn’t be like climbing a mountain. It can be small things that you do to make you feel good about yourself.

HERE ARE A FEW INSPIRATIONS FOR MANAGING STRESS:

Take a bath – there are bath lovers, and if you are one, then you get this. A long hot, peaceful soak can be soothing and warming through to your core. Add in some lavender essential oils, a favourite bath bomb or relaxing Epsom salts. Dim the lights, put on some music or a meditation, light a candle and let your stresses melt away.

Take time to read a book – reading can take you to a far away place. Reading in the middle of the day, not just before bed, can be just the escape you need. Even dipping into your book for five minutes can produce a shift to a more creative or calm place. Whether fiction, self-help or a biography, the written word has the potential to inspire.

Meditate – the art of quieting your mind is something that may seem impossible. With all that you have to think about, remember and pack into a day, taking 15 minutes to de-stress may seem too much. Guided meditations are far easier to dabble with. Deepak Chopra, the master of meditation, explains in his recordings how to slip into a meditative state while repeating a mantra. For those who can’t quiet the mind, distraction with a simple phrase works well.

Snack healthfully – while it feels like the chocolate bar or your favourite snack food is giving yourself a treat, how about a snack that fills you up with vibrant plant energy? An organic mango, bright and juicy raspberries, blueberries or blackberries are filled with sunshine and could give you far more zip than a sugary chocolate bar. Whatever your favourite food, eat with appreciation and love. Even if it’s chocolate.

Vitamin support – Adrien Gagnon carries a wide variety of products specifically formulated to address symptoms of stress: Relaxen is for calming and relaxing; Valerian is a sedative; Ginseng helps the body reduce the negative impact of stress; Omega-3 is a mood balancer; and B Complex can help combat depression.

Buy yourself flowers – there’s something about buying flowers for your self. For no reason. Spring flowers, like tulips or hyacinths. Bright as sunshine gerberas or daisies. Place whatever takes your fancy in a lovely vase and you will be smiling on the inside as you look and pass by them every day. Such a beautiful and simple way to manage stress!

Taking a moment to tell yourself “I love you” in the mirror every day has the potential to lift your spirits and have you shining from the inside out, as well.

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