Have you ever had a tough day at work, at home or school and you think you’d feel better if only you could relax? The blog Happier.com offers some helpful advice.
Many people think they need somebody else to make them feel better. But really, we can just as easily make ourselves feel better with the use of our five senses: taste, touch, smell, sight, and hearing. Being able to calm yourself down on your own can make overwhelming situations more tolerable. You don’t need anything too fancy, either – just a little bit of mindfulness meditation and one or more of your sense.
Let’s take a look!
Something to See
Sometimes having something to see is all we need to soothe our senses. You can do this by taking a walk or going for a drive. Find a pretty part of town and simply walk around, observing the beauty it offers. Looking at nature around you is another way to do this. Going to a museum or a farmers’ market offers beautiful art for your eyes to admire. Placing a flower where you can see it helps as well. Sit in a garden, watch the sunset or rise. Light a candle and watch its flame. Watch a travel video or a movie. Anything that stimulates your visual side is a great place to start.
Something to Hear
Just sit and listen to all the sounds coming and going all around you. It’s a practice called mindfulness. Listening to beautiful or soothing music mixed with nature sounds is great place to start. Looking up videos with sounds of baby laughter or small animal noises can be equally soothing. Sing to yourself or learn to play an instrument. Sit by water and close your eyes – can you feel that relaxation?
Something to Taste
The sensation of taste can trigger memories and feelings, so it’s important to find the tastes that are pleasing for you. Try sucking on a hard candy or some mints for a calming effect. Sip a soothing warm cup of herbal tea, or even a smoothie if you prefer something cold. Taste the rain. Sample flavors of ice cream. Eat a favorite food from your childhood. Chew on gum. Having something to taste is a great distraction during stressful times.
Something to Touch
Sometimes we just need a hug. When no one is around to give us one, we can bring that same level of warmth by touching something. For example, start by changing into something comfy – something silky or fluffy will feel great against your skin. Float or swim in a pool and feel the water caress your body – showers and baths work great too! Pet an animal, or get a massage. Play with play dough or give out high fives. Sink into a really comfortable bed and tuck yourself in – maybe even try a zip-up body blanket or heated pad. Touch is a very wonderful way to feel cozy and relieve that stress.
Something to Smell
Ahhhh, it’s the smell of “everything is going to be okay.” With aromatherapy, you can diffuse essential oils into the air or smell the oils right from the bottle. Take time to literally smell some roses, or arrange fresh flowers. Put potpourri in a bowl, or in sachets for your drawers – even under your pillow. Even just spritz yourself with perfume cologne to feel refreshed. Maybe light some scented candles or incense. Use linen spray for your bed. Smell food being cooked at home, or as you walk by a restaurant. The possibilities are endless really. Identify some smells that you like, and bring them into your life!
What do you think – a lot of fun and easy, right?
With just a little bit of thought, practice and imagination, you can leave stress behind and start down the road to relaxation.
As Mark Twain once said, “Sometimes the most productive thing you can do is relax.”
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