DURING WAKING HOURS
I try to exercise and eat well.
Laugh. Especially at myself.
Work with passion. Knowing I did my best keeps me at peace with myself.
Keep work at the work place, not in my head when I get home.
Talk to someone.
Express myself. If talking is a no-go for some reason, I blog to the bone til my brains give out. I do it with a cup of tea. Once I’ve had catharsis, I stop and take a long shower. I find the best sleep there is.
Oh yeah, if blogging is still a no-go for some reason, I try to list down the things I wonder about — answers not required. II try to avoid expounding from the list. (ex. if this is A, then maybe B is just like A then maybe I can fix A and B… but then again would the same thing work for C?…)
Be grateful. This sounds corny and naive but it works: List down the things I am thankful for; starting with the basic needs, and working my way up. I also list what are given to me by others, and by myself. This makes me feel that the world is inadvertently taking care of me. This also rewards me for taking care of me. With no guilt!
Redirect excess energy. I try to do something creative or crafty with my hands. Think Martha. I start with short easy projects. Unfinished ones will just leave me unsatisfied. It doesn’t matter if the finished product looks or tastes good. No one needs to see it anyway. But if I eventually crocheted myself a chic pashmina, well then!
Create memories. Stories sure sounds exciting and fun, but wouldn’t it be great if we actually experienced the event together? Even if the “event” its just a watermelon-seed spitting contest in our backyard between me and my brothers. Happiness shared is happiness growing exponentially.
AND TOWARDS DOWN-TIME…
Clear my head. We need to feed our minds, but all in moderation. Avoid over-stimulating my head: too many good activities, books, shows, movies. When I only have one eye open to read, matutulog na ko!
Have a winding down ritual: Soft music, warm milk, cold water, a nice shower, brushing your hair, stretching, whatever works for you. As long as it doesn’t require physical exertion and overthinking. Mine is washing my face and drinking green tea. I make it a routine so that my brain sees the pattern “oh, right after this is bedtime”
And finally: Avoid doing too much. Avoid burning the candle from both ends: Both fun and work can burn us out. “No” is always an option.
Bottomline: Balance time with work and others with time for myself.
How about you guys? What are your tips for beating stress?