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Mindfulness

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I guess the topic I have chosen to write on today is one to which everyone can relate to at some point of time in life or the other. Today I am listing down my favourite ways to beat stress and to unwind after a stressful day.

All of us, including me, juggle through so many activities on a day to day basis. You can feel this amplified if you live in a fast paced city or environment! Irrespective of whether you are a homemaker or a working individual, each one has to complete multiple tasks daily.

This can leave us completely anxious and feeling tensed even before the day comes to an end. The stress to get through so many tasks sucessfully can get to us & God forbid if things get tough! Situations like these end up piling more stress on our already stressed system and sends majority of our positivity flying out of the window.

Sometimes we end up holding up this stress for a long time, even after the stressful situation has long passed. This is unhealthy, both for the body as well as the mind. It is even bad for our relationships as we sometimes end up passing on our stress to them.

Holding up stress is something we all must avoid and learn to let go of. Understand that no human being is perfect and neither is life. We all learn through our mistakes and get better. Unfortunately it isn’t as easy as saying it is..

Here are 10 of my tried and tested ways to wind down after a stressful day which you can try out as well;

1. Listen to music – I still haven’t met someone who is not moved by the power of music. Listening to music has even been scientifically proven to alleviate stress and anxiety. ​Even a single personal favourite song can reduce stress and feelings of anxiety. So be sure to keep those headphones and a playlist handy! If you can, you can also perform a search online for songs that have been known to reduce anxiety and add them to your playlist! One such song is ‘Weightless’ by Marconi Union. It has been known to reduce anxiety by over 65 percent!

2. Repeat affirmations – Affirmations are great at reducing feelings of negation. I love them and have a big collection of them. I go through some of them every other day, irrespective of whether I am stressed or not, as reading them gives me joy and leaves me feeling happier and with a purpose. It has become a part of my weekly routine! Sharing one of my favourites here by Carly Marie from Redbubble;

3. Go through self help books or a chapter of your favourite book – Self help books are real gems. One of my favourite books which helps me wind down is ‘The Secret’ by Rhona Bryne. Just going through one chapter, or even a paragraph, makes me feel better and works wonders in shifting my thoughts. J. K. Rowling also makes my stress ‘magically’ disappear! One way you can use this tip is by having an ebook copy of your favourite book in your smartphone. Nothing better than having your favourite book handy with you!

4. Practice gratitude on a regular basis –Practicing gratitude makes you realise the things that are of ‘real’ importance in your life! Do this exercise every morning or at night, while going to bed and I am sure that you will see a positive change in yourself. Some people find it helpful if they list the things they are grateful for. If you are one of those, make a list of things that you feel are irreplaceable in your life, things or people whom you just cannot do without. Write those things down and make a list – make it as colourful and appealing as possible. Use handmade paper and make it attractive. Keep it with you and read through when you feel your stress building up!

5. Watch a funny TV show or any of your choice – Watching one’s favourite TV series, preferably funny ones, can help one wind down after an incredibly stressful day! I personally find it very helpful in shifting my thoughts which have built up from a stressful situation. It works to reduce stress in a very similar way as listening to music does.

6. Listen to a TED talk – I love TED talks as each one carries soo much of wisdom! They also have these talks categorised into playlists and have some for every mood. For eg. if you are feeling musical or when you are looking for some inspiration etc. If you haven’t listened to one already when stressed, I suggest you to do so soon! I am sure you will get hooked, just like me! 😊

7. Go for a walk – There is rarely something that a walk cannot clear up – especially issues of the mind! Walking for just ten minutes can help clear your mind’s stress and is beneficial for your physical health as well. The outdoors can work wonders and help get rid of your stress.

8. Catch up with close friends – Spending time with the people who always look out for the best when it comes to you, the ones who are part of ‘your tribe’, are the ones who you can approach if you are finding it difficult to deal with stress on your own. Sometimes even a simple call to a trusting and helpful friend can relieve your stress! Never be afraid to reach out for help when you need it – We are social beings and can sometimes simply need to be among our caring friends to feel better!

9. Practice deep breathing – Although it sounds like something we do everyday, deep breathing is a thing we rarely practice properly. When stressed, take some time to sit in a quiet place and breathe deeply and slowly. Focussing on your breath is known to help control your emotions. Notice how we tend to breath rapidly when angry or frustrated. It is the same with being calm, deep breathing forces our emotions to tip towards relaxing down.

10. Pick up a mini project related to your passion – Doing something you love is the best way to keep holding stress away. Maybe you had though of creating that lovely dreamcatcher and had put the project away because you didn’t have time for it; find time for it now. Start that painting you had wanted to create, even if you aren’t an artist! The possibilities are endless and the activities you are passionate about are so very doable! Talk about venting out your stress creatively! 😊

Each of these ways have helped me deal with stress effectively! If some of these are new to you, I suggest that you give them a try if ever a stressful situation does arise. After all, our mental wellbeing is responsible for the quality of our life. Through this blog, I wish to make everyone see life through rose tinted glasses! 💫

Wish you a positive day! Love, Pooja. 😊

“Life is better when you are happy!”

Hello!

Hope you guys are having an amazing week! Although I am writing a post on things you should do more often, I am going to talk a bit about the picture above. I simply liked the kid in the picture on seeing him! His colourful dress is a treat to the eyes & isn’t that smile simply contagious? The picture completely justifies the word ‘happiness’, thereby making it a mandatory share on my blog! 😊

I prefer a couple of lovely websites for free stock images (Since I don’t want to get into any legal complications) to use for my blog posts. Using these till I actually start around clicking my own ones. This particular one is taken from Upsplash. It has an incredible collection of HD quality pictures captured by photographers which are free to use. Do check out the website sometime to see the beautiful pictures and boost your mood! 😊 Have you seen better ones? Feel free to share where you get your blog post images from!

Coming back to the blog post topic! Today is a Wednesday. Inspired by the trending wellness Wednesday hashtag, I have decided to share 3 things that you should do more often. They are guaranteed to give you good results in the long run by affecting your mental and physical wellbeing. Read on, wellness is just half a blog post away;

  1. Notice life’s little pleasures – Be it a sweet smiling baby, a beautiful butterfly or a breathtaking rainbow, these everyday little pleasures add sunshine to any normal day. Often times we ignore these little joys and focus on life’s problems and stresses as they are always at the back of our minds. Make it a point to live completely in the present moment and on encountering joy, stop and appreciate it fully.
  2. Stop comparing – “Do not compare somebody’s tomorrow to your today!” Comparison kills creativity and originality. Each person is unique and one rule cannot apply to us all. To add to it all, each individual person works by his or her own unique time zone. If we are all different, how can we compare one person’s achievements or failures to another one’s? Think over it. Comparison only gives rise to negativity. Compete with your own self and strive to do your best!
  3. Practice affirmations – We all see and hear affirmations being talked about on social media. Their power cannot be overstated. Start and end your day with affirmations. They can simply be single positive statements you say to yourself or even a collection of some of them together. The key is to feel good. If you haven’t started this practice already, start now!

Remember that focussing on negativity​ and problems help no one. Let them go. Let the past stay where it should, in the past. These 3 practices can help you enjoy the present and to become more aware of your surroundings. See life through rose-tinted glasses! 

Have a positive day. Love, Pooja.

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