De-stress at Work in 5 Quick Steps | MINDSTYLE

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Are you looking for a quick way to de-stress?

We all know that feeling when your schedule is jam-packed and you just can’t seem to catch a break. You feel on edge and might even experience physical pains like headaches and neck-pains. Your body is sending out signals to you: THIS IS TOO MUCH. How do you deal with this? As everyone could use a quick technique to de-stress, I’m sharing this 5-step method today.

1. Recognize and accept you feel stressed

The first step to every change is to recognize and accept. Learn to recognize the signals your body gives when you’re stressed. Most common signals are: feeling rushed, feeling on edge, headaches, neck-pains, tired eyed and an overall uncomfortable feeling. Then, accept that feeling: Our first response to these signals is often to ignore them and “get over it”. This might work for a short period, but after a while this stress will take its toll on your body. Chronic stress can cause: anxiety, depression, insomnia and more. Learn to recognize the signals to beat chronic stress to the punch.

2. De-stress by creating environmental rest

When our environment is “stressed” (read: cluttered), your brain can get cluttered too. Clutters distracts the mind from the important stuff. Therefor, take a few minutes to clear your desk: Throw out (or archive) excess papers and put back items where they belong. A clean environment helps the brain to relax.

3. Sit in a relaxed position

Get a comfortable seat and sit straight up (no hunching over) with relaxed shoulders. Place your feet hip-distance apart, flat on the ground. By letting your muscles relax, you’re giving signals to your body (and mind) to relax. If you want, you can close your eyes. If you’re surrounded by colleagues and feel awkward, you can also keep your eyse open. Just make sure you’re facing a blank wall so your eyes (and brain) get a break. You can also look at something else as long as it’s not a screen or work related.

4. Take deep conscious breaths

Now, start taking deep conscious breaths. Breathe in through your nose and breathe out through your mouth. Inhale until your body stops naturally and exhale completely. Use your abdomen to take breaths. When you breathe in, your belly starts to expand. When you breathe out, your belly deflates. Focus your mind on these breaths and notice the belly’s movement. Repeat inhalation at least 20 times but as long as needed.

5. Get back to work

Get back to work, BUT focus on one thing at a time. Although some of us can multitask, the quality of your work is always better when you focus on one task at a time. By focusing on one task at a time you also prevent your brain from re-cluttering.

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