15 Ways to Relax Instantly When Stress Hits

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Some people seem to be easy go lucky by nature it’s enviable. Especially if you’re the type who gets stressed rather easily and can’t relax instantly.

Stress can hit you anywhere. Whether you’re at work, you’re dealing with things at home, or you’re at a social gathering – it doesn’t matter. When you get stressed, you want – no, need – to relax.

Of course, it’s easy to say that one should do this and that to relax instantly, but it may be harder for some than others. There are, however, proven ways that do result in almost instant relaxation.

Here are quick ways to relax instantly when you need it the most.

  1. BREATHE. The first thing to pay attention to is how you are breathing. The chances are you’re taking quick, shallow breaths. What to do: Take deep, slow breaths and count them. Learn more about the importance of proper breathing here.
  2. CHECK YOUR BODY/MUSCLES. More than your breathing, pay attention to your body as well. Are your jaws clenched? Are your shoulders taut? You may not be aware of these things, but once you consciously pay attention, you can “force” yourself to relax those muscles as you control your breathing.
  3. STRETCH. If you are in a place where you can do some stretching, do so immediately. You can even simply roll your head around slowly to loosen your neck muscles. That alone can do wonders for relaxation.
  4. COUNT. This can go in tandem with breathing and stretching. Or you can simply count to calm down. Count slowly from 1 to 10, and then count backwards. Repeat as often as you need to.
  5. LAY YOUR HEAD ON YOUR DESK. If you’re at work, and you suddenly feel overwhelmed, one of the best things that will help you relax instantly is to lay your head down. If you have a small pillow, that’s even better. Close your eyes and shut everything out for five to 10 minutes. Count as well.
  6. MASSAGE YOUR HAND. Give your hands a massage for a few minutes. Be gentle but firm, and you’ll see how quickly you feel better.
  7. USE A STRESS BALL. They’re not called stress balls for nothing. Always keep one around so that you can release tension when you need to. Try not to do anything while using your stress ball. Just sit there and let your mind wander.
  8. TAKE A WALK. If you can, go out and walk around the block, go to the park, or simply walk around the building. The physical effort will clear your head and give your body time to calm down as well.
  9. LOOK OUT THE WINDOW. If you can’t go for a walk, look out your window and appreciate what you see. Sometimes, a slight change of view can make a world of difference.
  10. VISUALIZE. Don’t have a window or a nice view? Use creative visualization. Think of a “happy place” – your favorite beach, for example. Close your eyes, and see that happy place in your mind’s eye.
  11. AROMATHERAPY. Keep essential oils handy: lavender, geranium, petitgrain, sandalwood, neroli, ylang-ylang, and bergamot all help to relax. Visit a shop and test out the scents so you’ll know which you prefer.
  12. WRITE. Sometimes, all you need is to vent; and if you don’t like talking to other people, you can write what stresses you, how you are feeling, and anything that’s in your mind, really. You can even throw the piece of paper away – or burn it – after you’ve ranted on paper.
  13. LISTEN TO MUSIC. Pick out songs that you know always makes you feel better or cheer you up. Create a playlist, and put it on whenever stress strikes.
  14. EAT A BANANA. Bananas help with stress because of its potassium content, which gives a quick burst of energy. While that may not seem to be directly related to relaxation, having that energy will help you counter stress.
  15. DRINK GREEN TEA. You might be a coffee drinker, but if you’re really stressed, and you want to relax instantly, get a cup of green tea. More than other drinks, green tea has been known to dampen anger/stress thanks to its chemical properties.

Some of these things may help you, others may not. What you can do is try different combinations to see what works best for you.

20 Ways to Relax Your Mind and Body

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