It’s that time of year again. Or is it ALWAYS that time of year!?! Stress seems to creep in for me when I’m preparing to get my son, Talon, back to school (which was just yesterday, in case you’re interested). When I’m working on a big project, which by the way seems like that’s ALL the time. Hey a girls gotta dream right? Big dreams = big goals = lots of stress. Around the holidays for me too. Not because I don’t love them, but because I’m a people pleaser and want everyone to be happy. I’m also a perfectionist with a touch of OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) too. So there’s that.
There are several ways that I feel I reign in my stress and control it before it hijacks my day(s). Feel free to give one or all of ’em a try.
1. Breathe. This may sound so obvious because we have to breathe to stay alive, but in this case I mean deep, focused breathing. In fact, if you’ve ever been around me when I’m walking my son through a difficult moment the first thing I tell him to do is breathe. Take a deep breath in through your nose, at least 4 seconds, hold for 7 seconds, then exhale through your nose, pushing it out as long as you can – try for 8 seconds.
2. Touch. I often find myself rubbing my neck and shoulders, tickling my arm or giving myself a hand massage. Physical touch does wonders for our soul and lowers stress levels like crazy. If you have a partner around that’s willing to help you with this – good on you! But, if you’re at work or no one is around, you can give yourself that physical touch of a neck or hand massage.
3. Sleep. This can and will be its on blog topic, because of its importance and because it’s one of the main reasons I remain a loyal doTERRA customer. I know all too well that getting enough sleep and/or at least quality sleep is the key to overall health. Seriously. A good night’s sleep will help to improve mood, provide you with more energy and you got it – reduce stress levels.
4. Oils, of course! I realize that this one should go without saying, but sometimes we forget or don’t even realize how our power of smell can affect our mood. Because I use doTERRA, I also use my essential oils topically and internally too to help combat the effects of stress.
In conjunction with breathing I like to use citrus oils. Citrus oils are naturally uplifting. Although I’m a fan of all the citrus oils and blends (Wild Orange, Bergamot, Lemon, etc.) my current favorite is a blend from the kids collection: Brave. I simply roll it on my pulse points (mostly over my heart and on my wrists) and start in with my breathing technique. For that physical touch there are lots of different directions I go, depending on the circumstance. The AromaTouch blend is perfect for creating a sense of relaxation and helps to lessen tension. If I’m feeling like I need more of a pick-me-up then, of course, I reach for my citrus oils and blends. As for sleep my go-to oil is Serenity. For me Serenity shuts the wheels off in my head, allowing me to fall asleep quickly. I’ve also been using the Serenity Restful Complex. This combines well researched all-natural ingredients that help you get a good night’s rest without leaving you feeling groggy. The most powerful product I use for sleep are doTERRA Lifelong Vitality supplements. I’ll go into the why and how when I do my post on sleep, but for now all I can say is that these supplements have changed my life. I know that seems like an exaggeration, but it’s not. The box even boosts “Just 30 days to change your life – GUARANTEED.” My top 2 oils for relieving stress are the Balance and Serenity blends. Together these create an overall sense of calm and grounding. You can add a couple few drops of each to a diffuser or I even make a blend of these oils that I can roll on my wrists and over my heart and even the bottoms of my feet when stress levels are high. Simply add 10 drops of each to a 5mL roller bottle and top with Fractionated Coconut Oil.