1. Do breathing exercises: Breathe in deeply, expanding your belly, not your chest. Count 1…2…3…4, and then hold your breath for a moment. Let it out slowly through a thin opening in your lips, and count 5…6…7…8. Repeat as many times as you like.
3. Use a back massager or get someone to massage your back: It relieves tense muscles in your neck and back, helping you feel more relaxed.
4. Engage in self-care: Take a bath, put on a face mask, or paint your nails. It will help you feel refreshed. Taking care of your body is important. You need to show it love just like a plant needs water. You are worthy of time, love, respect, and commitment. Show yourself that you respect and love your body, that you are committed to taking care of it.
5. Do something productive, like laundry or dishes. Sometimes you don’t feel like doing it, but once you’re done with a chore, you’ll feel like you got at least something done that day. You’ll feel productive and more purposeful. And, a chore got done in the process. Plus, focusing on completing a task help you be mindful, instead of ruminating or worrying.
6. List 5 Positive Things: This activity can really change your perspective and helps you focus on the bright side.
1) I got a lot of writing done today.
2) No headache today.
3) Played Pokemon and got some exercise.
4) Made dinner by myself.
5) Made it to my therapy appointment on time.
7. Do Progressive Muscle Relaxation: It’s really good to relax your entire body, and it helps you be mindful because you are focused on tensing and relaxing your muscles. Here’s an infographic describing the steps.
8. Exercise & do stretches: Ride your bike, take a walk in the evening when it has cooled off some, or exercise inside. I like to do cardio. Stretch your legs and arms, putting your elbows up behind your head and pulling your arms across my chest. I also like to look to my left, my right, up, and down for about 10 to 15 second in order to stretch my neck. My neck is usually tense, so this loosens things up.
9. Listen to a guided meditation: Pop your headphones in and simply search “guided meditation” on YouTube. Then close your eyes and relax. Michael Sealey is a good person to listen to. Some of my favorite tracks to listen to are this one or this one. Make sure to turn off the lights and lay in a comfortable position.
10. Use essential oils: Open the bottle and dab it on the back your neck, wrists, or temples. Usually, not all three. Otherwise, the smell can be too overpowering. Bring the bottle to your nose and breathe in deeply. Focus on the smell and let it calm and refresh you.
August Blair is the founder of Survival is a Talent. She is a freelance writer, blogger, and social media manager. She studies creative writing at Georgia State University. She loves reading, sweets, and warm weather. A story about her life with a mental illness has been published in the next volume of The i’Mpossible Project. It is available for pre-order and will be in stores November 2017. You can connect with her on LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.