Skills and Stress

As evidenced by a high blood pressure reading at my most recent doctors appointment(s), I’m stressed. This is nothing a) new or b) abnormal, especially with a job in a corporate office. I’m working on my stress-relieving/coping skills, and finding that they’re pretty limited.

I take showers. (This is not very good for the environment, and I feel a little guilty about taking wanton showers that I don’t need, but it DOES help me de-stress)

I go for walks. (When it’s not dark. And when my joints cooperate. Also, I need new shoes.)

I try to meditate. (I’ve been learning various kinds of mindfulness meditation for the last year and a half, though I’m admittedly not very good at it. Still, focused breathing, even if I can’t get to focused, non attached thinking, helps)

But I kinda need some more tools in the box. When I’m really anxious, eating a snack helps, but that doesn’t really help with stress – and depending on the availability of gluten free snacks, can be a stressor instead of a de-stressor.

I’m open to trying some new things to help me manage this. So what do you do to manage stress?

4 thoughts on “Skills and Stress

  1. How about finding a scent that you find calming, and wearing a decorative vial of that, so you can sniff whenever you need a moment? Or you could dab a cotton ball and wear it in a locket …

    A girl friend of mine had a piece of art she hung in her cubicle — it was a picture of a dog sleeping on a bed in a room with an open window and curtains blowing. Very calming.

    Or play-dough or squeezie stress relievers. I used to have one that was some sort of fine sand in a balloon. Felt great to handle.

    Be well soon!

  2. I juggle to relieve stress. It got to the point where my classmates would exhibit a Pavlovian response- one saw me juggling on a day that had just been extra-stressful and asked what exam he’d forgotten to study for.

    As a bonus, the juggling balls are good squeezie stress relievers.

    Mine are basically this pattern: http://www.abc.net.au/science/surfingscientist/jugglingballs.htm

    My other stress relievers are meditation and katas, but I don’t think that last one would work out so well with joint issues.

  3. I make lists of everything I need to do and that, for me, helps me feel in control as much as possible.

    I also take time for me, time to do nothing, where I just turn off my brain and veg out. This seems to be an acquired skill, and not everyone can do it. But if I don’t have my do nothing time, the crazy brain very quickly takes over.

  4. I do the list thing – it makes me feel more in control.

    Also, the scent thing is a nice one. You can use a scent locket for a pretty thing that smells nice all day long. Possets makes great perfume oils that are perfect for this.

    Progressive Muscle Relaxation helps — I do this while in “corpse pose” at the end of my light yoga session and by the time I relax my face, I always feel better.

    Daydreaming and intentional visualization also helps. =]

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