Getting back into the regular routine of work and school after the holidays is enough to make anyone a little sad.
As blissful summer days give way to the daily grind and all the stress that comes with it, we can slip into unhealthy coping mechanisms that are detrimental to our overall health, but it doesn’t have to be this way.
Stress can wreak havoc on your body and leave you more susceptible to illness as well as stealing your sense of joy.
Thankfully there are small things we can do every day to help change our mindset and alleviate feelings of tension and stress.
Below is a list of things you can do during your work day to help you feel a little more grounded and help reclaim your happiness back from the cold hands of stress.
1: Hand massage.
Treat yourself to a beautifully nourishing hand cream and give yourself a mini hand massage!
Take a few moments to massage the lotion into your hands and really notice the feeling of your palms, the backs of your hands, your fingers and cuticles.
This simple exercise can be done at work, takes less than a minute and will not only leave your hands soft but your mind a little calmer too.
2: Mindful colouring.
Mindful colouring forces your mind to focus on coloring in the image in front of you, leaving little room to worry about your day.
There is a huge variety of adult colouring books to choose from, so whether you like animals, landscapes or flowers, you’re sure to find one that suits your interests.
Setting aside even just 15 minutes to sit down and focus on colouring is enough to instill a sense of calm and let go of your worries for a while, giving your brain a much-needed rest.
3: Essential oils.
We all know that lavender oil is great for calming a racing mind, so why not make use of this wonderful oil!
You can buy many different blends of oils such as lavender and juniper for relaxation, peppermint for easing headaches or lemon and rosemary to improve focus.
Their portable size means they are great to throw in your bag so you can brig them out when you need to.
By rolling the oil onto your temples and massaging for a few moments, you have a quick and easy way to reduce stress and tension, while the lingering scent continues to work it’s magic until it wears off.
4: Mindful walking.
Get away from your work space during your lunch break and go outside.
A short walk is a great way to clear your head as well as add a bit of exercise into your day.
Leave the phone at work to minimise distractions and really pay attention to your surroundings.
Notice the trees and all the different shades of green, the different coloured flowers and the bees buzzing in among the blooms. Notice the birds foraging for food and the way they move their wings when they fly.
You might like to find a place to sit and watch the world go by or pay attention to all the sounds you can hear: the leaves rustling in the wind, birds chirping, people talking, children laughing or dogs barking.
By focusing on your surroundings, you are being mindful and living in the present moment, giving your mind a break and allowing yourself to relax.
Books are doors that open to other worlds, and while you might be stuck at work or at home, your mind doesn’t have to be.
Whether you like fantasy, science fiction, biographies or romance, there is a book to suit everyone’s individual tastes.
Allow yourself some time for quiet reading and let yourself become immersed in the story.
If you’re often stuck in traffic or take public transport, you might like to listen to an audio book on your commute.
Forget about your job, deadlines, chores and errands and allow yourself to be swept up in the story and give yourself a break.
The above exercises are simple little things you can easily incorporate into your work day.
It can be all too easy to work yourself into the ground, but remember you can’t perform at your best if you’re physically exhausted and mentally stressed.
It’s time to stop stress from stealing your peace.