For some people, lockdown feels like it will never end.
Sure, some people are loving the extra time at home.
But for others, well, it’s stressing them out.
I received an email this morning which I’d like to share with you…
How can you be so upbeat and positive all the time? It feels like nothing can get you down. And here I am, on my 6th week of lockdown and it feels like a prison sentence. Can you give me some advice to feel less stressed?
So, for “Moniker, and you if Covid-19 is stressing you out…
5 Ways You Can Reduce Stress Today
For sure, chronic stress can kill! It can also play a key role in heart disease, diabetes, weight gain, anxiety, and many other conditions and it is rampant in our modern hustle and bustle society and especially during covid-19.
So, you have a plan to make your life less stressful. Maybe you’ve been thinking, after lockdown, you’ll get it sorted. But that could be months away.
You need to reduce your stress right now, but how?
Don’t stress about being stressed!
You’ve got enough stress already. What you need to do is grab a cool IPA, cider, glass of wine, or simply a cup of tea, kick back, and read on.
Here are my five ways you can reduce stress today.
Put on Some Jam
That’s Eton Rifles or Going Underground! (Or your favourite, ‘get up and go” music.
Songs drive your emotions. They can take you back in time, calm you down, and amp you up. Use songs to your advantage and find some that help you relax. The Jam for me was my go-to- get ready to go out music. I used to always whack on my Jam tape before going out on a Friday night. These days Spotify has entire lists of relaxing music you can use.
So, put on a ‘toe-curling’, boppy song when you feel stressed. You’ll start feeling better and pretty soon the things you’re doing to help you in the long term will kick in. Your hard work will pay off.
Light Some Candles
Candles, especially the scented kind, are great stress reducers. Finding a good candle can be fun too. I’m sure you can buy some online and they’ll be at your home before the end of the week. Choose a scent that makes you feel happy and calm. Get a few different types so that the smells won’t get boring.
Then, maybe after the sun goes down and you need to unwind, turn off all the lights and light some scented candles.
Put on some chilled music, too. This will immediately put your mind into a more relaxed space.
Laugh Out Loud
I’m sure you know laughter can reduce the physical effects of stress (like fatigue) on the body. So, put on a funny video and laugh it up! It could be an old Faulty Towers sketch. Or Monty Python. Whatever. You know what you like. As a species, we developed laughter as a way to feel safe in an uncertain world.
Making jokes can also be a great way to focus yourself and laugh at the same time. Channeling energy into a creative outlet is a fantastic way to relieve stress and it will give you something to be proud of. Write a sketch comedy or standup routine if putting on a funny movie isn’t enough.
Write a Journal
Writing a journal can be a great outlet during lockdown. And it will be really interesting to read in a few years. It also serves as a way to log progress. Sometimes spilling words out onto a page can be cathartic. Journaling is like being your own therapist. When you write everything out, you can see new possible solutions. It will help you organize your thoughts and become less stressed.
So next time you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed, get out your journal and write about it. That alone will calm you down. Some days you may need to analyze your writing and make a plan for the next day. Keep it up and read your old journal entries to see how far you’ve come.
Hit the Exercise Mat
Of course, you can’t go to the gym right now. But don’t let that be an excuse. I just did a 15 minute hyper workout before writing this.
I’ve got a real macho, purple yoga mat I just bought. Great for laying out on the patio to do some ab work.
On top of the many health benefits to working out, it also helps you blow off steam.
You might feel stressed because you have too much energy. Working out will zap that extra energy and releases endorphins to juice up your happy chemicals. It is especially good at relieving pent up aggression.
Why don’t you order a punching bag? Super good workouts can be achieved from whacking a punch bag for 10-15 minutes.
Final Thoughts on Beating Stress During Lockdown
Regular workouts will, of course, improve your heart health and keep your back from getting sore as you age.
But don’t forget to eat properly too.
Lockdown might make you lazy to eat decent food. Don’t let it.
Make sure you’re having at least one fruit and veg smoothie every day.
Crappy diets and no exercise will make you feel like shit, and your body more stressed.
Resist the urge to veg out on the sofa for another Netflix binge.
At least, not before your 15-minute workout.
Try it out! You will feel less stressed immediately.
You don’t need to exercise for an hour or more…
Just go flat out for 10-15 minutes.
And if that is still too much, set your timer on your phone for 5 minutes and get that blood pumping.
Go on, do it NOW!!