'Scents Make Sense,' And 11 Other Things For The Person Who Is Feeling Stressed About Life

'Scents Make Sense,' And 11 Other Things For The Person Who Is Feeling Stressed About Life

I stress about stress before there's even stress to stress about.

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Stress. Everyone gets it. It's an unfortunate part of life.

Did you know? The average teenager has the same level of anxiety as a psychiatric patient in the 1950s. It's crazy to think that by those standards, we aren't doing more for our young people.

Thirty-nine percent of millennials said their stress levels increased in the past year, which is a higher rate than many of the older generations. Young Americans are also more likely to experience irritability or anger due to stress than older people, and more millennials reported being diagnosed with anxiety or depression than their elders. On top of that, only twenty-three percent think their health care provider supports them a lot or a great deal in their desire to make healthy lifestyle and behavior changes.

If you're someone who has been feeling overwhelmed and stressed out by looking at the list of all of the things you have to do, Here's one that can help you combat it and put your mind at ease.

1. Take a nap

sleep

Yes, it really is that simple. Power naps and naps, in general, are great ways to give you that boost of energy you need while letting you wind down.

2. Meditating or doing yoga

yoga

Meditation is a great way to calm the mind. Here are some easy meditation techniques for beginners. As for yoga, its the same thing as meditation, just a bit more of a physical aspect to it ( it will also help you get into shape if you are looking to.)

3. Getting off social media/ the internet

phone

Believe it or not, social media is one of the main causes of stress. Constant connection to social media can spread you thin. So the less connected you are, the more relief you will feel (even if it's just for a little while).

4. Pets

Fun Fact! Cuddling with a pet can trigger a physical reaction in the body that allows you to relax and be distracted from what is plaguing your mind.

5. Bubble bath

bath

Two words: Bubbles help. Oh and rubber ducks are a bonus.

6. Engage in your interest

writing

Reading, writing, cooking, or whatever it is that you enjoy. Just make sure its something you like to do and do it.

7.  Saying no

no

If all else fails just say no. I know its hard (really I do), but sometimes it can be a good thing.

8. Watching a movie

movie

What's better than sitting down with popcorn and a movie? The answer. Nothing.

9.  Eating chocolate

chocolate

Fact: Chocolate has been found to reduce stress and boost overall happiness. Dark chocolate (especially) has been found to improve mood by increasing serotonin and endorphin levels in the brain.

10. Aromatherapy

essential oil

Best paired with the bubble bath idea. Aromatherapy can go a long way in making sure you are relaxed. Scents just make sense. Check out this page for some scent ideas.

11.  Smile

smile

It may seem silly, but smiling has been known to boast your mood even just a little bit.

12.  Go outside

outside

People watch. Enjoy the sunshine. Go for a short walk. Henry David Thoreau once said, "I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life…and not, when I came to die, [to] discover that I had not lived." In short, greenery makes it easier to relax.

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To The Person Who Feels Suicidal But Doesn't Want To Die

Suicidal thoughts are not black and white.
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Everyone assumes that if you have suicidal thoughts that means you want to die.

Suicidal thoughts are thought of in such black-and-white terms. Either you have suicidal thoughts and you want to die, or you don't have suicidal thoughts and you want to live. What most people don't understand is there are some stuck in the gray area of those two statements, I for one am one of them.

I've had suicidal thoughts since I was a kid.

My first recollection of it was when I came home after school one day and got in trouble, and while I was just sitting in the dining room I kept thinking, “I wonder what it would be like to take a knife from the kitchen and just shove it into my stomach." I didn't want to die, or even hurt myself for that matter. But those thoughts haven't stopped since.

I've thought about going into the bathroom and taking every single pill I could find and just drifting to sleep and never waking back up, I've thought about hurting myself to take the pain away, just a few days ago on my way to work I thought about driving my car straight into a tree. But I didn't. Why? Because even though that urge was so strong, I didn't want to die. I still don't, I don't want my life to end.

I don't think I've ever told anyone about these feelings. I don't want others to worry because the first thing anyone thinks when you tell them you have thoughts about hurting or killing yourself is that you're absolutely going to do it and they begin to panic. Yes, I have suicidal thoughts, but I don't want to die.

It's a confusing feeling, it's a scary feeling.

When the depression takes over you feel like you aren't in control. It's like you're drowning.

Every bad memory, every single thing that hurt you, every bad thing you've ever done comes back and grabs you by the ankle and drags you back under the water just as you're about the reach the surface. It's suffocating and not being able to do anything about it.

The hardest part is you never know when these thoughts are going to come. Some days you're just so happy and can't believe how good your life is, and the very next day you could be alone in a dark room unable to see because of the tears welling up in your eyes and thinking you'd be better off dead. You feel alone, you feel like a burden to everyone around you, you feel like the world would be better off without you. I wish it was something I could just turn off but I can't, no matter how hard I try.

These feelings come in waves.

It feels like you're swimming and the sun is shining and you're having a great time until a wave comes and sucks you under into the darkness of the water. No matter how hard you try to reach the surface again a new wave comes and hits you back under again, and again, and again.

And then it just stops.

But you never know when the next wave is going to come. You never know when you're going to be sucked back under.

I always wondered if I was the only one like this.

It didn't make any sense to me, how did I think about suicide so often but not want to die? But I was thinking about it in black and white, I thought I wasn't allowed to have those feelings since I wasn't going to act on them. But then I read articles much like this one and I realized I'm not the only one. Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, and my feelings are valid.

To everyone who feels this way, you aren't alone.

I thought I was for the longest time, I thought I was the only one who felt this way and I didn't understand how I could feel this way. But please, I implore you to talk to someone, anyone, about the way you're feeling, whether it be a family member, significant other, a friend, a therapist.

My biggest mistake all these years was never telling anyone how I feel in fear that they would either brush me off because “who could be suicidal but not want to die?" or panic and try to commit me to a hospital or something. Writing this article has been the greatest feeling of relief I've felt in a long time, talking about it helps. I know it's scary to tell people how you're feeling, but you're not alone and you don't have to go through this alone.

Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, your feelings are valid, and there are people here for you. You are not alone.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255


Cover Image Credit: BengaliClicker

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The Selflessness Of Self-Care

It is OK to nurture yourself before nurturing others.

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Do you find yourself prioritizing taking care of others before taking care of yourself? I do.

Let me introduce myself. My name is Saiarchana, and I am a nurturer. Nurturing people is something that has almost become second-nature to me because I am so accustomed to doing it. I love uplifting others and being there to give them support when they are in need. I love giving support to others so much that I am even majoring in Psychology. Nurturing is something that is incredibly important to me. I nurture others because I don't want anyone to feel alone or unsupported.

But, sometimes I forget to nurture myself.

I used to believe that taking care of others involved sacrifice. This kind of sacrifice was my own energy and self-care. I lived under the belief that by pulling away and taking care of myself, I would be labeled as selfish. So, I kept on nurturing others around me.

Until I broke down.

I was giving so much support and care to others, that I had forgotten about me. I am also a very important person in my life. My relationship with myself is incredibly important, and I had forgotten that. I was so focused on pouring love and care to others, that I had forgotten to water myself with those same sustaining forces. I was getting drained and worn out from nurturing and giving love to so many people around me because I was neglecting myself.

When I realized what was happening, I finally understood: Love is not starvation. I do not need to starve myself in order to feed others. I do not need to neglect my self-care in order to care for and give love to the people around me. Nurturing others does not equate to neglecting myself. Because, once I neglect myself, I end up not being able to show up fully for the people in my life.

I read a quote by an influencer named Allie Michelle. Michelle said:

"Taking care of yourself is selfless. An empty well cannot give water to a village."

When I read this, it was as if my eyes developed clearer vision. I recognized that I believed that self-care was selfish when actually it is one of the most selfless things I can ever do for this world. When I am able to take care of myself, I am at a healthier and stable position to give care to others. When I give from a place of lack, I end up lacking more. Giving my energy to others when I am in desperate need of recharging my own energy will end up making me feel emptier. It is like the good analogy from Michelle's quote. I cannot give from an empty source. When I forget to give love and care to myself, I reach a point where there is nothing left to give to others, because I haven't maintained a solid foundation for myself.

Giving care to others should be a fulfilling experience, not a draining one. In order for it to be a fulfilling experience, I need to make sure I am not giving from a place of emptiness. I need to nurture myself because doing so will give me a stable foundation. So, I finally understand the key to nurturing others: making sure I am nurturing myself first.

So, what now?

I am going to continue giving love and care to others. But this time, I am going to make sure I am nurturing myself too.

I hope you nurture yourself too. You are worthy of the love and care you give to others.

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