How To Destress In A World Of Stress

How To Destress In A World Of Stress

There isn't just one way.

The world is full of things, activities, and life. Sometimes it can all come together and be wonderful, and other times it is overwhelming. Those are the moments in which you need to take a second and ground yourself.

1. Breathe.

Meditation and yoga can help you focus on what is causing the stress and encourages you to work on solving the issues. It gives you a moment to relax and appreciate the here and now rather than worrying about the future. It encourages you to take care of yourself.

2. Read.

Pull a book off the shelf or swipe through your collection of books on Kindle. Open your mind and experience another world -- another life that isn't your own -- that becomes your own as you invest your time in it.

3. Draw/color.

Being creative is one escape for people. You don`t have to be "good" at it, you just have to enjoy it. You aren't drawing or coloring for someone else. You are doing it for you. Adult coloring books are really neat if you look at them, but if you have some children coloring books, don't underestimate the calming effect of princesses and ninja turtles.

4. Bike.

Sometimes the simple motion can be soothing -- the wind rushes by as you escape from your troubles, leaving them in the dust. The tick of the chain -- its repetitive sound -- helps you realize there is something stable in all of this craziness.

5. Walk.

Taking time to slow down and look around gives you the opportunity to wonder and to wander, both physically and mentally through the world. The crunch of gravel/snow/leaves/sand/grass is all different, and each step we take is new and leading to something else.

6. Run.

You have to focus on breathing -- your pace. Look at the ground ahead of you so you don't fall. It doesn't leave space for thinking about everything, maybe just one thing that is on your mind, and gives you time to process it away from the distractions of everything else.

7. Listen to music.

Your favorite album has been left untouched. You haven't heard that song in years. You heard something new on the radio and now want to figure out the name of the song. Do it. Find yourself among the words of countless artists, many who may feel and think the way you do. Let the instrumentals float through the air, and carry you when words can't.

8. Play music.

Be the source. Pick up your guitar, sit down at the piano, or use your voice. Do whatever makes you feel connected to the rhythm -- to the beat. Match it to yours or chase the tempo you want.

9. Lay out.

Sometimes you just need some sun -- the warm comforting glow of the yellow-orange globe in the sky encasing you, and making you feel safe. You can even combine relaxation methods here by getting out a book, breathing, or listening to music.

10. Take a day trip.

Have a day off and don't want to sit at home where your thoughts are all consuming? Then don't. Go out for the day, try a new restaurant, go to the beach, find some trails nearby, and adventure. Explore the city you live in and embrace it. Learn about the culture and be a part of it.

11. Clean.

Some people feel better when they are doing things. Cleaning may not be the number one choice for some, but when you can't stand the uncertainty of plans being made or work scheduling meetings, you can control how your kitchen looks and tidy up the living room.

12. Visit a friend/family.

Going to see someone you haven't in a while can relieve some tension. You get to distract yourself from your life with theirs. Learn about their struggles, and maybe helping them will help you in a way.

13. Look through old pictures.

See how life was -- maybe how it could be. Don't dwell, but make a change. See what made those moments so special, and try to switch things up in your life now. Maybe things weren't so great then, and you are looking back to see how far you've come. You can see how much you really have accomplished with all the struggles, and see that what you are going through now got you somewhere better in the past. It will get you somewhere even further now.

14. Workout.

Get moving. Working up a sweat while finishing three sets of five or reaching a new personal best is satisfying. It shows that you are capable of whatever you put your mind to. Goals are reached and new goals created.

15. Work.

For some, going to work and being able to finish tasks is fun. It is achievable. Sometimes, the short term goals or the daily accomplishments are rewarding, and help you face the long term ones.

16. Talk about it.

Go get coffee with someone and just discuss life. See if they have any idea as to how to get through your seemingly impossible tasks. Maybe they will tell you about theirs, and you'll see that you aren't the only one searching for answers to seemingly impossible questions.

17. Sleep.

As in, get a good rest (at least eight hours) and don't overdo it. Getting on a schedule gives you the ability to maintain control over that aspect of your life. It gives you a routine. These things are going to happen. There are results, and one of them is not being groggy or out of it when you are trying to function on less than four hours of sleep.

18. Drive.

Late at night or during the day, there is something soothing about the road rumbling beneath the tires and the feel of the steering wheel you grasp with your hands. You are in control of where you are going and looking out the window at, in awe of what exists and how it all came together so perfectly.

The most important thing to remember is that you need to do what works best for you. If you've already found something, great! If not, try some of these options. If none of these things work, try something else.There are so many choices: knitting, skateboarding, or rock climbing. Whatever it is, try it. Expect some of these methods to fail miserably -- not because you don't believe they'll work from the start, but because some of them just will. You won't know which ones that will be until you try. Don't give up your search to find something that allows you to see that you exist, you matter, and you are here to prove it.

Cover Image Credit: MountainTop Acupuncture & Rehabilitation

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To The Boy Who Will Love Me Next

If you can't understand these few things, leave before things get too involved

To the boy that will love me next, I need you to know and understand things about me and my past. The things I have been though not only have shaped the person I’ve become, but also sometimes controls my life. In the past I’ve been used, abused, and taken for granted, and I want something real this time. The guys before you were just boys; they didn’t know how to treat me until it was too late. They didn’t understand how to love me, until I broke my own heart. Before you truly decide to love me I want you to understand these things.

When I tell you something, please listen.

I’m my own person, I want to be loved a certain way. If I ask you to come over and watch movies with me please do it, if I ask for you to leave me alone for a few hours because it’s a girl’s night please do it. I don’t just say things to hear my own voice, I say things to you because it’s important to my life and the way I want to be loved. I’m not a needy person when it comes to being loved and cared for, but I do ask for you to do the small things that I am say.

Forgive my past.

My past is not a pretty brick road, it is a highway that has a bunch of potholes and cracks in it. I have a lot of baggage, and most of it you won’t understand. But don’t let my past decided whether you want to love me or not. My past has helped form who I am today, but it does not define who I am. My past experiences might try and make an appearance every once in a while, but I will not go back to that person I once was, I will not return to all that hurt I once went though. When I say those things, I’m telling the complete and honest truth. I relive my past every day, somethings haunt me and somethings are good reminds. But for you to love me, I need you to accept my past, present and future.

I’m just another bro to the other guys.

I have always hung out with boys, I don’t fit in with the girl groups. I have 10 close girlfriends, but the majority of my friends are guy, but don’t let this scare you. If I wanted to be with one of my guy friends I would already be with him, and if you haven’t noticed I don’t want them because I’m with you. I will not lose my friendships with all my guy friends to be able to stay with you. I will not cut off ties because you don’t like my guy friends. I have lost too many buddies because of my ex-boyfriends and I promised myself I wouldn’t do that again. If you don’t like how many guy friends I have you can leave now. Don’t bother trying to date me if you can accept the fact I’m just another bro.

I might be a badass, but I actually have a big heart.

To a lot of people I come off to be a very crazy and wild girl. I will agree I can be crazy and wild, but I’m more than that. I’m independent, caring, responsible, understanding, forgiving, and so such more type of woman. Many people think that I’m a badass because I don’t take any negatively from anyone. Just like we learned when we were younger, “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all.” Most people can’t do that in today’s world, so I stick up for myself and my friends. I don’t care what anyone thinks about me, or their option on how I live my life. The only thing I care about is being able to make myself happy. Even though I’m an independent woman, understand that I do have a big heart. Honesty when I truly care for someone I will do just about anything they ask, but don’t take advantage of this. Once you take advantage of this part of me, all respect will be lost for you.

I’m hard to love.

Sometimes I want to be cuddle and get attention, and sometimes I don’t want you to talk to me for a couple hours. Sometimes I want you to take me out for a nice meal, but sometimes I want a home cooked meal. Every day is different for me, sometimes I change my mind every hour. My mood swings are terrible on certain days, and on those days you should probably just ignore me. I’m not easy to love, so you’ll either be willing to find a way to love me, or you’ll walk out like so many others have.

I’m scared.

I’m scared to love someone again. I’ve been hurt, heartbroken, and beat to the ground in my past relationships. I want to believe you are different, I want to hope things will truly work out, but every relationship has always ended up the same way. I’m scared to trust someone, put my whole heart into them, just to be left and heartbroken again. I sick and tired of putting my whole body and soul into someone for them to just leave when it is convenient for them. If you want to love me, understand it won’t be easy for me to love you back.

When “I’m done.”

When I say “I’m done” I honestly don’t mean that I’m done. When I say that it means I need and want you to fight for me, show me why you want to be with me. I need you to prove that I’m worth it and there’s no one else but me. If I was truly done, I would just walk away, and not come back. So if I ever tell you, “I’m done,” tell me all the reasons why I’m truly not done.

For the boy who will love me next, the work is cut out for you, you just have to be willing to do it. I’m not like other girls, I am my own person, and I will need to be treated as such. For the boy that will love me next, don’t bother with me unless you really want to be with me. I don’t have time to waste on you if you aren’t going to try and make something out of us. To the boy who will love me next, the last thing I would like to say is good luck, I have faith in you.

Cover Image Credit: Danielle Balint

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10 Quotes To Put Your Current Existential Crisis To Rest

Beautiful words for times of dread.


From the beginning of time, humanity has always asked the big questions. Sometimes, however, these thoughts can lead to anxiety and uncertainty about life, death, and all that happens in between.

Here are some beautiful words I've turned to during times of existential dread.

1. "Here's to all the places we went. And all the places we'll go. And here's to me, whispering again and again and again and again: iloveyou." — John Green

2. "Our ancestors worshipped the sun, and they were not that foolish. It makes sense to revere the sun and the stars, for we are their children." — Carl Sagan

4. "Remember, remember, this is now, and now. Live it, feel it, cling to it. I want to be acutely aware of all I've taken for granted." — Sylvia Plath

5. "From my rotting body, flowers shall grow and I am in them and that is eternity." — Edvard Munch

6. "Be soft. Do not let the world make you hard. Do not let pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness. Take pride that even though the rest of the world may disagree, you still believe it to be a beautiful place." — Iain Thomas

8. "Embrace the void and have the courage to exist." — Dan Howell

9. "It was as if that great rush of anger had washed me clean, emptied me of hope, and, gazing up at the dark sky spangled with its signs and stars, for the first time, the first, I laid my heart open to the gentle indifference of the universe. To feel it so like myself, indeed, so brotherly, made me realize that I'd been happy, and that I was happy still." — Albert Camus

Let these words bring you hope and comfort, and know that you are not alone.

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