Here are six de-stressing techniques to practice when you are constantly stressed and in need of relaxation.

As you already know, stress keeps us upset and irritated. It also affects our overall health.

In six de-stressing techniques, there is a grouping of trees there is a road between them and benches along one side. Tall trees on either side of a dirt road in a peaceful countryside setting

Stress hormones are the same ones that trigger your body’s “fight or flight” response. Your heart races, your breath quickens, and your muscles are ready for action.

This response was designed to protect your body in an emergency by preparing you to react quickly. But when the stress response keeps firing, day after day, it can put your health at serious risk.

1. Take A Walk & Explore Nature

Take a walk. If you live in a busy area, drive to a local park and walk among the trees. Try to put all your worries out of your mind and focus on what is around you. Be intentionally present in the moment.

Even in winter, research has found that physical activity in a natural setting may have unique health benefits.

Pay attention to the birds and squirrels. Use all your senses. See, hear, and feel what is around you, and mentally block everything else out.

A male cardinal perched on a wood privacy fence

Just five minutes of “nature immersion” can improve your mood.

Japanese researchers found that a stroll in the forest decreases cortisol levels, blood pressure, and heart rate, when compared to a walk in the city.

2. Tend House Plants

Simply viewing indoor plants has been found to lower blood pressure. It also reduces muscle tension and helps you recover from stress.

In six de-stressing techniques, one thing that calms me are looking at my house plants.

Transplanting plants from one pot to another induces mental calm and reduces physical tension. Immerse yourself fully in what you’re doing.

3. Get A Sound Machine

By playing recorded nature sounds indoors, you can find relaxation. It also masks the sounds of the outdoors, like street traffic.

I have two sound machines. One in the living room and one in my bedroom. I keep them both going 24/7.

A sound machine with many settings to help me de-stress

A Swedish study found that people recovered more quickly from stress when they heard water and birds than when they didn’t.

5. Calm Yourself With Breath Focus Techniques:

With this technique, you take long slow deep breaths (also known as abdominal or belly breathing).

As you breathe, disengage your mind from distracting thoughts.

6. Reduce Stress With Guided Imagery:

For guided imagery envision soothing scenes or experiences. This will help you focus and relax.

Guided imagery can also help you reinforce a more positive vision of yourself.

Practice self-compassion. The hardest thing to do is to forgive yourself. Regret is meaningless. It gets you nowhere. Reduce stress by feeling compassion for yourself.

In six de-stressing techniques, here is a pot of purple verbena in a garden in a peaceful setting

Alternative Ways To Relax:

There are other ways to relax. I love to read a good book. So I read for an hour or so before I turn out the lights to sleep at night.

Stop using electronic devices 30 minutes before bed. The National Sleep Foundation recommends that you should stop using electronic devices, like your cellphone, at least 30 minutes before bedtime.

Instead, grab the book that’s been tucked away in your nightstand and start reading for awhile.

Always having electronics around us keeps us engaged with incoming electronic data, and deprives us of needed mental downtime. Which defeats the purpose of relaxation.

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21 Comments

  1. I'm the Queen of relaxation. In the winter I take frequent baths with candles and soft music, year round I take walks in the woods, go kayaking weather permitting, listen to New Age music (doing so right now) and last but not least, I come here to look at your lovely pictures and read your eloquent and thoughtful posts.

  2. If your butterfly bush is still blooming it is beautiful OR was when it was blooming.. Your post today made me relax just by reading it.
    I sure wish I had a country road like the one you pictured to walk on.
    I know for sure that stress is not good. There is so much of it now days with the trials and tribulations going on in the world and our own country much less day to day family matters.
    I went out this morning and replanted some bulbs and a small chrysanthemum plant.. The exercise got me in my hips but I feel better just being out in the fresh air. Love to crumble the soil in my hands. That's good medicine !
    Loving and playing with our kitties brings so much happiness and relaxation.
    Have a happy weekend.
    Charlotte in Virginia

  3. I love all these ideas, and Ive always said if you live longer because of your pets, I will live to be a hundred lol..great blog, glad I found you:)

  4. Long walks, yoga and pilates de~stress me. But I am going to look for a sound machine at B B &Beyond because maybe it will help me sleep better. I used to listen to the radio at night because it would put me to sleep, but we don't have very many good stations here in Victoria. I can pick up stations from Houston, but they drift in and out and that makes me frustrated and gets me up. Yes, I think I need a sound machine. Thanks for the tip!

    Bit Texas Hugs,
    Susan and Bentley

  5. Hi Brenda,

    When I first clicked onto your blog, I misread the title of today's post and thought it said, 'Six DISTRESSING techniques'!! Expecting to see sanded furniture and a makeover of some kind, I soon realized that no chalk paint was going to make an appearance on this post! Amazing how one little, wee vowel can cause a tad of confusion, and, shall we say, a stressful second or two!;)

    Love all your ideas on dEstressing! We can all benefit from a number of them. I am blessed to be surrounded by rolling hills, blue skies and a valley of orchards and vineyards, all visible from my window, and can attest to the fact that these views alone, are integral to feeling relaxed and rejuvenated when stress tries to takeover my well being. Gardening and nurturing plants and flowers has also been rewarding, as you say, as well as walking. In addition, I like the idea of a sound machine that emits sounds of nature, as I am sleep deprived and although there are plenty of birds to sing me a tune during the day, they're not available for a lulling lullaby when I need one! Thus, they call it a night before I say, 'Good night!'.

    Thanks for these fantastic techniques promoting relaxation and ridding ourselves of unwanted stress!

    Poppy

  6. You are so on track with de-stressing. I listen to rain, waves but I need to do more walking in the woods. I love walking in the rain – I use an umbrella.

  7. I sure know working outside helps me. I have been grumpy all week and went out and worked for two hours straight cleaning the coop and moving the compost bin and cleaning up fall junk and felt like a new woman.

  8. Thanks for these tips. Some things that really help me de-stress or calm down are yoga stretches and meditation, taking a walk outdoors, petting my kitties and playing with them, writing poetry, and soaking in a hot bath with lavender essential oil. I don't like sound machines, but I do like fans for "white noise". Can't sleep without a fan going.

  9. I have one of those sound machines too Brenda and it does really help! I often take a short tap during the day to de-stess, it does me lots of good. Sitting on the porch listening to the birds and feeling the breeze is lovely as well.

    1. I've been researching how to help my immune system. It seems that I catch colds so easily and it leads to bronchial issues. How to increase my immune system? It seems that stress is one of the most deadly things for the immune system. This post is helpful to me. Thankyou for sharing.
      Balisha

  10. Love all of these ideas, and I think I need to get one of those sound machines even though I live in the country. They really make a big difference when it comes to sleeping? Thanks for mentioned where you got it! I can't wait to hear about your essential oils. We use lavender here all the time to relax, helps with migraines!

  11. I have 2-3 CD's that are waterfall, the ocean, beach sounds with birds that I play when I want to be alone and relax. I close up the house and even fold clothes to these discs, pretending I am in a cottage at the beach and listening to the sea gulls and waves come to shore. It is refreshing and I can do a lot of peaceful thinking or no particular thinking at all. But, I also find much comfort in prayer, just letting God be the one you trust in, because of His promises and His word, and knowing he is always near, listening is the greatest comfort of them all. Go to bed at night and ask God to take all your cares and worry away. He will do it. Without God there is nothing, He brings us inner peace.
    (((HUGS))) Susanne 🙂
    (((HUGS))) Susanne 🙂

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