4 Steps to Decreasing Stress That Take Less Time Than You Think
In our ever-busier life and very busy city of Denver, it's incredibly easy for us to neglect ourselves and our own self-care, leading to heightened feelings of stress. Lots of us women know WHAT to do, but find ourselves not doing it - "I should go to yoga!" or, "I should get in bed earlier, for once!" And then, yet again, we're off on a Netflix binge and suddenly it's midnight, and we're already stressing about everything that's coming tomorrow. Not to mention all the stress we're still carrying from today.
Here are a few simple ideas for decreasing the stress in your life that take less time to implement than getting your om on in a yoga class.
1) Create Space.
Look around your space, your home or office. Is it cluttered? Does it annoy you? Are there piles of mail and magazines all around, or - my personal favorite - a "floordrobe" strewn across your bedroom floor for the past week? Take 5 minutes and gather up these items. Throw them in a box, a bag, anything you like. You don't even have to deal with them. Just create some space. Notice how nice it feels to have a clear coffee table or breakfast nook. Research shows that our space has a direct influence on how we feel; we tend to express externally what we feel internally; and vice versa. If your home is cluttered, it's likely that your insides are too. The simple act of clearing something out can have a profound positive effect on our mood.
Now that you have a little extra space in your home, let's talk about making it pretty. Pick up some inexpensive flowers on your next grocery store run. Buy a new candle with a soothing scent that speaks to you. Perhaps get some green on in your space with a new plant, or herb that you might use in cooking. My personal favorite is a mint plant. For less than $3 at Sprouts, I can bring it home and set it in the center of my breakfast table. In the evenings, I pick fresh mint leaves for my tea. These simple acts of beautifying our space bring life and color into our interior home and by proxy, our inner world.
3) Create Ritual.
Next, try creating some small daily rituals that help you to calm. You now have a cleared space and some simple beauty to enjoy in your home. Try spending some time each day in this space doing something that feels GOOD to you - reading, journaling, perhaps just simply sitting and taking a few moments do breathe deeply. I love to come home from a stressful day and light a candle, make tea, and journal my thoughts. It helps us to clear our minds, and even just 5 minutes of this kind of rest helps the mind to reset and enter into a calmer state.
4) Let Go Of What You Hate.
Finally, one of the easiest ways to decrease stress quickly, that doesn't cost a dime, is to let go of trying to do something that you hate. For example, I know many stressed out women who will say, "I need to join a gym!" Then I'll ask them, "Do you like going to the gym?" "No," they respond. "In fact I hate it. I hate the parking and the mirrors and the energy and the way I feel when I'm there."
Ok, great! Then LET IT GO. All too often we let our minds slip into the "shoulds" - "I should go the gym," etc. But here's a simple truth: If we hate something, we are not very likely to do it, and even if we do for a short time, we are not likely to keep doing it. What if you gave yourself permission right now to stop pressuring yourself to do something you hate? Take a moment, and write that thing down on a piece of paper. Then rip it up and trash it. Let it go. You no longer have to to do the thing you hate - life is too short. This can help create even more mental space to think about this question: What do you LOVE doing? That is likely to be the thing you will want to do and continue doing.
It can be hard to sort through all the options for Denver therapy! If you are a woman dealing with overwhelm, focused and supportive women's counseling can help decrease stress and create more happiness in your life. Give us a call at (720) 363-9188 or Book Online Here - it would be our honor to come alongside you and help you find more ease, joy and calm.
p.s. If you are looking for a great yoga studio in Denver, check out some of our absolute favorites below!
Karma Yoga Center http://www.karmayogacenter.com/
Samadhi Yoga Center http://samadhiyoga.net/
Asana Yoga Center http://asanastudio.com/