American Psychological Association’s annual Stress in America survey has reported that stress levels among women is higher than men's stress levels. This has been happening every year since the survey commenced. Even in 2017, men's stress levels dropped while women's stress levels increased slightly.
From never-ending ‘to-do lists’ to the pressure the society puts on women to be the ‘perfect women’, it's not easy to cope with. After all, women rush around trying to do more, and give more all the time. However, excessive stress can take a toll on your health and body.
So, get ready to de-stress like its recess with these relaxing hacks.
Do you know emotions around us impact our breathing pattern? When you decide to breathe in a relaxed way, it basically promotes calm effect. Good part of breathing practice is that you can do it anytime anywhere. Put all your focus on breathe. One such common technique is 4-7-8 exercise introduced by Dr. Andrew Weil.
Here's how you do it: Take air through your nose over the period of four seconds, hold it for seven seconds and then exhale with a whooshing sound. Exhale the air over the course of 8 counts. This breathing practice that you can do anytime will help release overanalyzing and associating yourself with the thoughts. It aims to slow down heart rate and boost oxygen intake.
Learn to meditate
Meditation has shown to be much beneficial relaxation strategy. Typically, it is a guided imagery meditation where you learn to be fully present in the moment, let go of your thoughts and achieve calmness. It is as simple as breathing or stretching exercise. The more you exhale, the more you feel relaxed. Meditation aids in improving mood, sleeping patterns, positive transformation, and reduces fatigue, restlessness and discomfort. So, practice it whenever you get some spare time.
Use weighted blankets to cope with anxiety
We spend nearly a third of our lives sleeping, but sometimes it's not the easiest thing to do. Weighted blankets have become quite popular in many homes as they claim to help reduce stress, anxiety and provide a better night's sleep. If you're constantly stressed out, it will be better to snuggle up in a weighted blanket. These weighted blankets can weigh from 4 up to 30 pounds, and tend to create a calming comforting effect due to their heavier weight compared to average blankets. Weighted blankets push your body downwards; the process is also called as earthing or grounding. Studies have found that grounding can help in reducing cortisol’s night-time level. Basically, cortisol is a stress hormone which releases when you face stressful situations. For people who are patients to insomnia, or anxiety, weighted blankets may grant a safe substitute to medication.
Create a relaxation playlist
Music is one of the relaxation strategies that instantly influences your mood, and soothe or excite the emotions. Regardless of what sort of music you tend to enjoy, make a relaxing Playlist for you. This is because music sparks imagination; minimize stress and is a beloved pastime. According to a research, listening to music prior to an upsetting situation helps the autonomic nervous system which controls heartbeat, breathing and digestion. This is how you can recover sooner from emotions of stress. In addition, you can either craft a new Playlist by asking others for recommendations or enjoy the existing one. Find latest artists, share Playlists and keep the fun going. Use Spotify to relax and unwind better.
Limit your screen time
Screen time affects your brain. Research has shown dopamine (a hormone released in brain for reward addiction) is released during gaming and internet usage. This urge user to more screen time and gaming. It's more like a psychological addiction. Many studies have also shown that blue light is bad for good sleep.
What you can do: Stop using screens an hour before you decide to go to bed. By doing so, you will feel lighter and calmer. Greatest benefit of limiting your screen time is that it keeps you more focused. So, just try to turn off your phone, TV and computer for a short time, so that you can relax without noise and distractions.
A Massage Therapy
Give yourself a massage or make an appointment with a professional massage therapist. Massage therapy is a renowned way for stress sufferers to seek solace.
The main benefits you get from massage therapy are.
Rebalance your hormones
Releases your muscle tension and relax your sore muscles
Boosts immunity and release toxins
Enhances serotonin and dopamine levels by 28 and 21% respectively.
Lessen the stress hormone levels by 30%
Let go of all this pressure. Let relax, and breathe.