By Barbara Pronin
Juggling family, work and obligations can be enough to stress anyone out in today’s hectic world. If you need a breather now and then, the Mayo Clinic suggests seven ways to slow down, regroup and refocus:
1. Exercise – A quick jog in the midst of a chaotic day—or even a brisk walk around the block—can get feel-good endorphins going.
2. Connect – Your stress instinct may be to wrap yourself in a cocoon. Instead, reach out to family and friends—doing so can offer distraction and provide support.
3. Meditate – Close your eyes for a few minutes—visualizing places you enjoy can help quiet the competing thoughts crowding your mind and causing stress.
4. Journal – Writing down your thoughts can help release pent-up emotion. Don’t think about what to write — just let it happen. Don’t worry about grammar or spelling, either!
5. Flex – Try yoga—just 10 minutes of controlled poses can help you slow down and relax. Take a class, or research online for some guidance to get started.
6. Listen – Listening to (or playing) music is a stress reliever because it decreases stress hormones and reduces muscle tension. Set aside 15 minutes or so and let your mind absorb it.
7. Laugh – Laughter fires up and then cools down your stress response. Get the giggles in by hanging out with friends in the break room, reading a few jokes (or telling some!), or watching a half-hour comedy.