Let’s face it, we are always on the go! Whether it’s working, taking care of kids, tending the house, running errands, spending time with our partners, or tackling that eternal to-do list. We’re always busy. Finding time to relief stress can be hard, yet very important for our sanity. These simple ways to relax on the go can be done anywhere and can lead to a healthier state of mind.
1. Breathe in. Breathe out.
Probably the simplest, most effective way to instantly relief some tension. I even have my toddler join me when she’s having a “15 seconds is too long to wait for dinner to warm up” meltdown. We take deep breaths in and loud exhales out. It takes our mind off the immediate source of stress by focusing on something else. If you’ve never tried it, just start by inhaling through your nose for four counts (1-2-3-4) and exhaling through your mouth for another four (1-2-3-4). Do it at least three times and notice the difference!
2. Neck Stretches
We hold a lot of our stress on our neck and shoulders. Adding movement can actually ease away some of it. To start: relax your shoulders (pull them down), tilt your head to one side until you feel the stretch (not pain!) and hold for a few breaths. Do the same on the other side. To add more movement, after tilting your head to one side, just roll your head down (keeping your chin close to your chest) and pivot to the other side. This exercise only takes a few minutes and feels so good afterwards.
3. Body Scan
Take a second to asses your body from head to toe. Where are you holding tension? Your eyes, ears, jaw, shoulders, hips, feet? Forcefully relaxing these areas releases unnecessary tension. An easy way to relax them is to tense each area first and then release, then you know what the ‘relaxed’ state feels like. Over time, you’ll notice where your body seems to keep harnessing tension. In my case, I constantly have to remind myself to release my jaw, even when just watching TV!
4. Sing it Out
Find your favorite Backstreet Boys tune and turn the radio up! Be that person singing like a mad woman on their drive to work. Don’t hold back. Have your kids join you for some extra fun and a lesson in music history. Remind your partner how angelic and mesmerizing your voice is. Some other great choices: Whitney Houston, Alanis, and maybe even some Bohemian Rhapsody. A dance party in the living room also works!
5. Counting the Positives
Changing your mindset is a quick way to turn your frown upside down. You can start your day by naming three things you’re grateful for, think “I’m thankful I can feed my family” instead of “Grocery shopping is what nightmares are made of” or even find a favorite quote or mantra to lean on.
Try each of them out and find which combination works best for you. Have more time to dedicate to yourself? Try these!
Do you have a favorite relaxation technique?
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