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Stress Relief

We know we aren’t alone in feeling like the last 18 plus months have been unusually stressful.  Life pre-pandemic had its fair share of stress, but this is a level of stress unlike anything we have ever had to deal with.  In fact, it has been brought to this writer’s attention that we might be grinding our teeth more than usual, which has led to an upcoming dentist appointment.  When making the appointment we were assured we were far from the only patient making an appointment for this issue.  In fact, there have been several long term patients that have been having grinding issues, some so severe that they have broken teeth!  That is a lot of tamped down stress my friends!  

So today, we are going to explore some ways to deal with our stress in a better, more productive way that will hopefully save you from having to visit the dentist as well!

Don't worry if you're having a hard time adjusting from 2020 to 2021. What we've all been through has been different to say the least. A new year brings new knowledge. 
-Torron-Lee Dewar

Our world during the pandemic has gotten a bit smaller, but not less busy.  There are still all the responsibilities, but it does seem like all the ways we have previously deemed as means to destress aren’t available or don’t seem quite safe pandemic wise.  

Massages, mani-pedis, gym workouts, happy hours...they are all technically available, but when you are a parent of unvaccinated children, caring for someone who is immune compromised or you yourself are immunocompromised, decisions have to be made as to what will increase my or my families COVID risk?  Which when you think about it is really quite a stressful process.  Constantly having to make wise and informed decisions over fun is responsible, but it doesn't mean that suddenly we are less stressed, it just means we are even more stressed and we don’t know how to deal with it!

Stress level: extreme. It's like she was a jar with the lid screwed on too tight, and inside the jar were pickles, angry pickles, and they were fermenting, and about to explode. -Fiona Wood

Stress Management

  • Self Care

If massage and nail establishments are outside of your comfort zone at the moment, then look into options online or most likely on Amazon that will help you create an in house spa without breaking the bank.  There are always foam rollers and lacrosse balls for sore and tight muscles.  Completely out of your depth on how to foam roll?  Youtube and Airrosti videos specifically can be very helpful.  

  • Hobbies

Find things that bring you joy or brought you joy at one point in time.  Reading, watching new series or old movies, painting, baking, knitting are all very relaxing and fun, but these are just a few of the many things out there that you can try.  If you hate whatever hobby you try, offer up the items online or donate to charity or a retirement home and move on.  

  • Meditation and breathing

Exercise is a major stress relief to some and for others, it makes them more stressed, so obviously choose something that helps you.  Yoga can be bliss or torture, so finding your prefered exercise genre and program is really again a matter or trying things out.  We have said it many times, but youtube is amazing, but there are also a lot of great paid apps and channels to try out as well.  Prices vary, so make sure the investment is something you are willing to commit to, at least in the short term.  

Even if “proper” exercise isn’t your thing, find a way to get outside and walk, sit and meditate, relax and breathe or a combination of all three.  When your shoulders are hovering below your earlobes, you are tired, your head hurts, you are yelling at everyone, put yourself in a timeout and center.  Yes, your head is screaming for chocolate and wine, but while those are divinity on earth, breathe, roll your shoulders and find a mantra to repeat before you allow yourself back into the world.  

  • Use the good china

Use the good china, bake the cake, wear the pretty clothes that are getting dusty in the back of the closet, if the clothes in the closet don’t fit-buy new clothes, dance around your house, turn up the music, live in the present. 

We put so much effort into our future plans, that we forget to appreciate the present.  When we are the most stressed, that is when we should stop and ask ourselves, what do I need right now?  Food, a nap, a few moments with an ice pack on my head, a few minutes to collect myself?  Let your partner know what you need to decompress at the end of the day and be sure to ask them what they need in return.  If you share a flat, ask your flatmates what they need and let them know what you need, come to an agreement or compromise.  When everyone who shares a space is honest about their stress and what they need to do to manage it, you alleviate the collective stress everyone has from having to tiptoe around one another.  

Dear Stress, I would like a divorce. Please understand it is not you, it is me.
-Thomas E. Rojo Aubrey

While all signs point to this pandemic not being over anytime soon, we do have things within our control, we can get vaccinated, we can mask up and we can work to be better at managing our stress.  If this pandemic has taught us anything it is that life is short and we can adapt.  Squeeze all the joy you can out of this life, address what is making you stressed and for all the support you need along the way, know we are here for you.

Every day brings a choice: to practice stress or to practice peace.
-Joan Borysenko


All the best-
Team SG


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