UNSTRESS YOURSELF: 5 Ways to Chill Out
In 2016, I still worked a corporate job and hustled harder than anyone I knew. Yoga was simply a blip on my radar and was more of an idea to get a toned booty rather than a “toned mind.” I worked 10-12 hour days and hardly even left my desk to eat lunch.
The company I worked at didn’t necessarily agree with my style of work - but they didn’t mind that I was eagerly taking on more than anyone else and constantly striving to keep everyone happy. It wasn’t company culture that drove me to burnout, it was my complete lack of awareness when it came to managing stress. I mean, my freakin’ eyesight was deteriorating over a matter of months from the constant computer time.
Fast forward to now and I’ve left my corporate job. The burnout was enough to send me on a backpacking trip around South America and to make a promise to myself that I would never clock in again. I haven’t had to break that promise (nor do I intend to), but I recognize that a corporate path is more of a norm than that of an entrepreneur.
I also recognize that some people aren’t as insane as me when it comes to overworking, but actually have jobs where the environment forces it. So, this post is for all the homies hustling a little too hard. I feel you, I’ve been there, and maybe if I had these tools to UNSTRESS, then I’d be gossiping over the water cooler with you still.
1 - Meditation
I know, I know, I recommend meditation like the media recommends an apple a day to keep the doctor away, but this WORKS. Meditation is a way to release stress and fatigue caused by overworking yourself.
I use 1GiantMind every single morning and absolutely love the technique. It’s super accessible and FREE forever so you can practice anywhere and anytime.
The technique is all about effortlessness so you don’t need to stop yourself from thinking or trying to make yourself more relaxed. All you need to do is allow what is naturally happening in your meditation and be accepting of whatever experience you are having.
They have 10, 15, 20 and 30 minute guided or non-guided meditations as well as a 12 day “Learn to Meditate” course (also FREE). It seriously rocks whether you are just beginning or have been meditating for years.
You can check it out here:
2 - GROUND DOWN. (aka Earthing!)
Sticking your toes in the sand or bare feet in the grass is more than just a nice feeling for the senses. It’s an opportunity to connect back to the earth's energy and electrons. “Earthing” promotes a release of stress, better sleep and an increase of energy.
EVERY single time I get out to the beach or take Penny to the park I make sure to slip off my shoes and make that skin to Earth connection. It might be the placebo effect at first, but I absolutely feel so much better and more clear within moments. Plus the sounds of nature are dope (waves crashing, leaves rustling), wouldn’t you agree?
3 - Matcha, matcha, matcha!
On those days you feel extra stressed? Skip the coffee and go for matcha instead. Matcha has those same energizing benefits as coffee, although not quite as intense, but also has L-theanine which is an amino acid that helps to reduce the reaction of the nervous system to stresses by blocking certain receptors. WIN WIN.
There are tons of different matcha powders around - but not all matcha is created equal. The matcha I have found that I really enjoy is from Four Sigmatic. On days when I’m looking for an extension of the caffeine, I’ll combine their matcha powder with Bulletproof MCT Oil and Fourth + Heart Madagascar Vanilla Bean ghee for a bulletproof matcha latte.
If you’re not drooling yet, head to my latest IGTV post to see how I make it here: www.instagram.com/avajohanna
4 - Crystal Bubble Bath
Alright, guys, I’m going to get a bit woo-woo on you and SURE you can say placebo effect for this one too, but when I want to throw my phone across the room (and it’s not too hot) there is nothing better than drawing a bath and grabbing my favorite grounding crystals.
GROUNDING crystals are ones that connect to your root chakra - aka your energy center for safety, security, and feeling grounded. So, if you’re super stressed out and your mind is going in a million different directions, take 15-20 minutes to incorporate this into your night (OH, or morning!) and see how much it helps you to chill out.
Here are some crystals that you can use:
Black Obsidian, Petrified Wood, Hematite, Ocean Jasper, and Smokey Quartz
I usually like to go to the local crystal shop so I can pick out the crystals I like best, but I’ve also purchased from Energy Muse online which is a trusted source for crystals from across the globe.
After you get your crystals, draw a bath and add in lavender epsom salts or 3-5 drops of lavender essential oil. Add those bubbles because YOU DESERVE IT then hop on in. I usually place a crystal or two on my physical body and then any extras around me in the water.
5 - Create a RAGE PAGE
Shout out to Miki Ash, who was just on the Alchemized Life Podcast and shared her tool for LETTING IT ALL OUT. Ladies and gents, it’s the RAGE PAGE and it is oh-so-effective. So, you can do this for anger, sadness, STRESS, whatever you want and the idea is simple: Grab a piece of paper and get it all out.
Write down your worries, write down the things that make you anxious, write down something your stupid co-worker did and then draw a funny cartoon version of them that looks like crap because you have no idea how to draw people (okay, this might just be for me). Take the time to really get everything out until you can feel the emotions associated with the stress leaving your body.
After you finish? BURN IT ALL! But, do it in your sink or toilet so there are no fires. Safety, guys.
I like using my Bullet Journal from Amazon to do all the things, you can grab the same one here: https://amzn.to/2M4XAA7
How do you un-stress yourself?
Now, I'd love to hear from you! What are your favorite ways to unstress after a long day at work or a not-so-fun conversation? I am ALWAYS looking for new fun ways to release stress and anxiety from my life so share your tricks in the comments below!
Note: This is not a sponsored post, but there are affiliate links included.