28 Jan 10 ways to De-Stress in 5 Minutes or Less
Does the thought of taking time out to relieve stress make you feel even more stressed? Fear not, de-stressing doesn't need to take a long time. If you're feeling frazzled, there are lots of quick and easy things you can do to calm down. So next time you feel your stress levels rising take a few minutes to give one of these top techniques a go!
- Smile - I know you probably don't feel like it but give it a go. Smiling, even when you don't feel happy, can instantly lift your mood, grin and feel your troubles melt away. Try it now!
- DIY Massage - take 5 minutes and give yourself a massage at your desk. All you need is a tennis ball and a few instructions.
- Stretch - another quick fix at your desk, just follow our guide to Pilates based stretches at your desk, for your neck, shoulders and back. 5 minutes is all you need to stretch your stress and tension away.
- Breathe - just taking a few deep breaths can help reduce tension and relieve stress, thanks to an extra boost of oxygen. Deep breathing can help you relax as it makes your body feel like it would when relaxed. Even better news, deep breathing has been proven to counteract some symptoms of stress, such as reducing blood pressure.
- Phone a Friend - Sometimes you just need to vent and who better to listen than good friend or loved one when you need to de-stress. Go-on, just get it off your chest, it will help you calm down and keep things in perspective and they might even make you smile...bonus!
- Take a Walk - Exercise, even when done leisurely, is a great way to relieve stress and boost endorphins, the feel-good chemicals in your brain. If you feel overwhelmed, go outside and walk for a few minutes. You'll be amazed at how much better you'll feel.
- Sweet Scents - Certain scents can help calm, energise or revitalise; lavender can be soothing and peppermint can increase your focus. Why not keep some of your favourite scented products around, take a few deep breaths of it when you're stressed and notice the instant calm you feel.
- Visualise - Even if you can't physically escape from your stressful day, you can escape through the magic of your mind. Right now, close your eyes and imagine your favourite place, somewhere you feel totally relaxed. Whenever you need a short escape, you can always return there in your mind.
- Tune In - Choose music you find most relaxing, keep it on your computer, in the car, and on your Ipod in case of stressful emergencies. Tune in to your music and tune out the world around you.
- Close Your Eyes - Sometimes the simple act of closing your eyes and breathing deeply can do wonders during a stressful day. Do this a few times throughout the day to help your body and mind relax.
See, you don't need to go out of your way to control the stress in your life. Spare five minutes here and there, and you'll be a calmer, more focused person in no time! And to keep hold of your new sense of calm why not include a regular Pilates class in your weekly plans, your body and your mind will thank you!