Exam Stress Releasing Tips and Techniques
6 self-care tips to stay stress-free in the run-up to Christmas
Christmas can be a stressful time, so make sure you don't forget to give yourself a regular self-care gift in the run up to the big day. These tips will help keep you calm at Christmas...
1. Be a Christmas volunteer
Scientists have discovered humans are programmed for altruism, and being generous with your time, efforts and friendships can have a profound effect on your mental wellbeing. According to the Mental Health Foundation, doing good deeds promotes changes in the brain that not only make you feel happier, but also calmer – and that you can draw upon the memories from this ‘kindness bank’ long after the event. So whether it’s volunteering at a foodbank or inviting an elderly neighbour over for a mince pie and cup of tea, now’s the time to embrace the Christmas spirit.
2. Add Epsom salts to your bath
If you’re lying awake, suffering from restless nights’ sleep and twitchy legs, try having a bath filled with a generous helping of Epsom Salts before bed. Magnesium is key to energy production, and low levels can also cause cramps and twitchiness. Epsom Salts are rich in magnesium, which can be absorbed through the skin. Yellow Gorse Epsom Herb Bath Soak contains Epsom Salts with stress-relieving bergamot and soothing calendula to help calm your mind before you sleep.
Yellow Gorsewill be at the Country Living Magazine Christmas Fair, London.
3. Go to a carol concert
Belting outGod Rest Ye Merry Gentlemenwith the Christmas carollers could help ease the stress of Christmas shopping. Research found that singing in a choir for just one hour decreased levels of stress hormones. Singing gets more oxygen into the blood and increases levels of feel-good hormones. Time to brush up on those festive favourites…
4. Be mindful
Mindfulness – paying attention to the present moment – can give you a greater awareness of the thoughts and feelings going through your head. By allowing you to stand back from your thoughts, you can notice the ones that might be unhelpful or taking over – and then help you deal with them in a better way.
A simple technique to get you started involves sitting quietly in front of a lighted candle. While you breathe in and out, focus on the candle flame and how it moves. Every time your mind wanders bring it back to the candle flame. Try using a candle with a calming fragrance, such as Coco & Ginger Comfort & Joy candle with its scent of fresh fir needles.
Coco & Ginger will be at the Country Living Magazine Christmas Fair, London.
5. Pat a dog
Stroking a pet helps to reduce short-term levels of heart-rate and blood pressure. One study found the presence of a pet dog or cat resulted in lower heart rate and blood pressure when carrying out a stressful task – even more than having a friend in the room. However, non-pet owners can also get a stress-busting effect from animals – research has found that even video recordings of birds and fish buffered people from stress.
6. Change your cuppa
Caffeine is a stimulant, which is why a cup of coffee is so effective at waking you up in the morning. But too much caffeine will flood your system with adrenalin, making you feel stressed and on edge. Switch to a naturally caffeine-free alternative, such as Wee Tea Company Mulled Wine Fruit Tea – a festive brew that’s perfect for cold winter days.
Wee Tea Company will be at the Country Living Magazine Christmas Fair, Glasgow.
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