Be at Your Best Every Day

Be at Your Best Every Day

by Beth Jones

Has back to school gotten you overwhelmed already?

Whether you are a parent or a teacher, you must remember to practice self-care to be at your best every day. Our children can feel the stress and anxiety we display, if we as parents do not learn to de-stress and relax. Take a few minutes a day to try one or two of these relaxation techniques to help you get through your busy day and the school year.

1. Meditate

A few minutes of practice per day can help ease anxiety. It’s simple. Sit up straight with both feet on the floor. Close your eyes. Focus your attention on reciting — out loud or silently – a positive mantra such as “I feel at peace” or “I love myself.

2. Breathe Deeply

Take a 5-minute break and focus on your breathing. Sit up straight, eyes closed, with a hand on your belly. Slowly inhale through your nose, feeling the breath start in your abdomen and work its way to the top of your head. Reverse the process as you exhale through your mouth. This is great to do at the stoplight or in car pool.

3. Get a Facial or a Massage

Visit a spa and experience a relaxing facial or massage. Some spas offer Express Packages to help with cost and time.

4. Be Present

Slow down. Be still. When you spend time in the moment and focus on your senses, you should feel less tense.

5. Reach Out

Your social network is one of your best tools for handling stress. Talk to others – preferably face to face, or at least on the phone. Share what’s going on. You can get a fresh perspective while keeping your connection strong.

6. Tune In to Your Body

Mentally scan your body to get a sense of how stress affects it each day. Lie on your back or sit with your feet on the floor. Start at your toes and work your way up to your scalp, noticing how your body feels.

7. Decompress

Place a warm heat wrap around your neck and shoulders for 10 minutes. Close your eyes and relax your face, neck, upper chest, and back muscles. Remove the wrap, and use a tennis ball or foam roller to massage away tension.

8.Laugh Out Loud

A good belly laugh doesn’t just lighten the load mentally. It lowers cortisol, your body’s stress hormone, and boosts brain chemicals called endorphins, which help your mood. Lighten up by tuning in to your favorite sitcom or video, reading the comics, or chatting with someone who makes you smile.

9. Crank up the Tunes and Dance

Research shows that listening to soothing music can lower blood pressure, heart rate and anxiety. Create a playlist of songs or nature sounds. You also can blow off steam by rocking out to more upbeat tunes – or singing at the top of your lungs! Turn up those tunes and dance while cleaning the house.

10. Get Moving

You don’t have to run in order to get a runner’s high. All forms of exercise, including yoga and walking, can ease depression and anxiety by helping the brain release feel-good chemicals and by giving your body a chance to practice dealing with stress. You can go for a quick walk around the block, take the stairs up and down a few flights, or do some stretching exercises like head rolls and shoulder shrug.

11. Be Grateful

Keep a gratitude journal or several (one by your bed, one in your purse, and one at work) to help you remember all the things that are good in your life. Use these journals to savor good experiences like a child’s smile, a sunshine-filled day, and good health. Don’t forget to celebrate accomplishments like mastering a new task at work or a new hobby.

When you start feeling stressed, spend a few minutes looking through your notes to remind yourself what really matters.

12. Remember to SMILE!!!

Submitted by Beth Jones, Skin Therapy by Beth Day Spa. 

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