This day’s Health Matters story centers on a premise we all believe in, but rarely place as a priority in our lives. How do we de-stress our life?
I’m not an expert. I’m not a pro and this is something I’ve not done well with in my life.
There was a time where, for example, the answer to more work and more assignments was always a big loud YES.
As it turned out, that yes was, in many cases, to the detriment of my family and my health.
Achieving the balance between "working for a living so I can eat" and knocking down the stress so we can enjoy a quality of life is a delicate equation.
Here is what I have learned … and in many cases learned the hard way … about de-stressing.
Find something that nourishes your soul
That may be volunteering at a non-profit or a church. It may be painting. It may be starting a journal. It may mean (gasp) turning off your devices. Once you get over the trembling and hyperventilating, turning off your devices is a good thing.
Find things to course correct
Not every bad moment may require something dramatic as a visit to a counselor. Maybe a couple of songs improve your mood. Mine are ‘Land of Hope and Dreams’ and ‘Wrecking Ball’ by Springsteen. Anything by Jason Isbell and The 400 Unit will usually help my day. If I need some volume, maybe it's the Drive By Truckers. Maybe it’s learning meditation techniques. Maybe it’s just sitting in a quiet room for 10 minutes before you go to work.
Tuning out negativity
This one is hard but potentially has the biggest payoff. Negativity tends to come at you exponentially. It may be coming from one person but it can take the toll of 10 people. Develop a filter. Develop a way to tune them out. You may just have to tell them you can’t listen to them complain anymore. Some people are just stress starters. They leave the room and you can take a deep breath. The filter is huge. Focus on what make your happy, what gets you through the day, and also what about that day is going to make you a better person.
This is just me. This may not exactly work for you. But what you can do, is use it for a starting point. Find a kindred spirit who you can turn to when the stress starts to add up.