It may only be June, but if your daily life is crammed with pressing things to do, it’s easy to become overwhelmed. While it may not be realistic to scale down on your responsibilities, try these ways to boost your wellbeing and calm your mind so that you’re better able to cope with the challenges of the day.
Bump up your Vitamin C intake
Opt for drinks with lemon in them. The Vitamin C content helps to minimise the effects of stress hormones in the body, according to researchers at the University of Alabama in the USA. Vitamin C, in particular, is one of the first minerals to be depleted in the body when a person is under stress, so sip on a cup of lemon tea to benefit from its calming, strengthening effect on the nervous system, or add the juice of one lemon to a smoothie mix of two cups apple juice and a handful of grapes. Just the smell of a lemon will also have a positive effect on anxiety and lift your mood so look at diffusing this essential oil in your office space.
Breathe in the calm
When things feel frantic, burning a candle or blend of oils can help you relax. A blend of neroli and frankincense oils will have a calming effect, while a candle with a comforting scent like vanilla will soothe frazzled nerves. Or, keep a little bottle of rose oil on hand as it is deeply calming and uplifting. Dab this onto your pulse points when you need to keep things under control.
It’s 2am and you’re wide awake
Getting a good night’s sleep is essential during stressful times, but going to bed with nerves that feel shredded can result in you waking up at 2am, with your to-do list looping on repeat in your head. If your racing mind is regularly stopping you from getting enough rest, take steps to wind down before bedtime. Things like taking a bath and spraying your pillow with lavender essential oil will help you switch off and relax before bedtime.
If you wake up during the night and struggle to fall asleep again, calm whirling thoughts by counting slowly backwards from 100, or try this breathing technique: breathe in for one count, out for two, in for two, out for four, in for three, out for six, up to in for six and out for 12, then repeat backwards all the way down to one.
Importantly, cut out the cellphone time just before bed as the blue light affects sleep patterns. Switch off all devices to give your brain time to rest and try reading a book or magazine before bed instead.
Get someone in to help at home
After a stressful work week, the last thing you feel like doing is tackling chores around the house. Take some of the pressure off yourself by hiring an expert cleaner from SweepSouth to come in for a morning or a full day to tidy the house. It also helps that someone else has done the background checks on your behalf, which leaves you with even more me-time. During this time you can indulge in some self-care, while you know your home is in good hands and you’ll be coming home to a tidy and welcoming space.
Take a zinc supplement
In addition to Vitamin C, it’s a good idea to consider a zinc supplement to boost your immune system. Zinc, one of the health heavyweights, is the second most abundant trace element in the body and helps build healthy immune cells needed to fight infection. It also reduces fatigue and plays a key role in the renewal of skin cells and keeping hair and nails healthy — concerns that often affect diabetics.
It’s okay to flop… down and relax
This one is a hard one for driven souls to admit, but it’s okay to take some time out and do nothing. Create a pocket of time, even if it’s just once a week, where you forget about commitments and to-do lists, and focus solely on something you enjoy. Choose an activity that’s easily achievable and entirely for your pleasure, whether it’s yoga, watching your favourite series or baking. Switching into relaxation mode and doing something for your own benefit, especially if it’s something that you love, strengthens and energises you.
It’s easy to get so swept along by the tide of busyness that we forget about ourselves and our own health. But remember that tomorrow will be just as full of demands as today is. Don’t lose sight of the fact that occasionally, even if it’s just for a few minutes, you need to stop, slow things down, take a couple of deep breaths…and just let life be.