It seems that everyone around me is stressed, for varying and warranted reasons. As an empath, it has been rubbing off on me, so I have been reaching for the things that calm me down. One of my friends told me that she was stressed and I asked her how she was nourishing herself. She paused for a long time and couldn’t think of anything.
I recommend after reading this post to take a pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and write your own list. Don’t think too hard. Just think about the things you most reach for when you have a bad day that make you feel better. Then, when you have a bad day and you feel flummoxed about what to do, you can reach for your own solutions, which won’t make everything right, but will bring your stress levels down.
Here are some of my tried-and-tested nourishing tools:
- A pimped out bath: candles, bath bombs, ambient music.
- Lying on the floor. Sometimes this is an official yoga pose. Other times, it is just what it sounds like and helps me to feel grounded.
- Hot tea. There is something about the ritual of making tea that helps me to calm.
- An early bedtime. I will unabashedly put on my pjs at 7 and go to bed at 8 when I feel like I need to recharge.
- Bright clothing. Something about putting on a bright colour surges me with energy, even when I am lacking in it.
- Lattes. Mike and I bought each other a cappuccino maker for Valentine’s Day and I love bringing out my inner barista.
- Hugs. Sometimes I have to ask for one, sometimes I don’t, but either way, it always helps me.
- Outside time. Being outside, even if it is just outside my building can help to pull things into perspective.
- Cuddles from animals. They use me to give them food, I can use them for affection.
- Books that I have already read. There is something comforting about returning to a story that will give me no surprises.
If you feel inclined to do so, let me know what you most turn to when you feel the effects of stress within your own life. We can all benefit from more ideas on how to develop inner resilience.
I didn’t even mention meditation in my top ten list, but it is what most soothes me when I find I am taking something too hard or forecasting the future. I get up in the morning and I sit. It sounds so simple, but it ends up allowing me release, even on the subtlest level.
This month’s free meditation is a five senses mindfulness exercise that doesn’t require any formality. It is something to take with you on the road, to help with any racing thoughts or when you start to feel stress build in a way where the only thing you are looking forward to is that glass of wine at the end of the day. (No judgment, it’s just hard to wait the whole day for your relief.)
I hope that you enjoy it. I have so been enjoying our small community of mindful warriors.
I am grateful for you.