What helps you reduce stress?

Music, a good book, going outside, calling a loved one or best friend? What helps you relax?

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Hi. I’m the sole caregiver of an elderly, disabled parent. I like to listen to music, work outside, play Yahtzee on my phone to relax.

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Meditating, hikes, nature photography, and reading are my go to stress relievers. Wish I had more time for them.

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I give myself time to read and play games on my phone. I also enjoy time away such as having an afternoon out with friends to go to a movie. I even relax just grocery shopping. It gets me out of the house and away from the stress for an afternoon.

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Crocheting, gardening and playing with our dog are my favorite stress reducers. I love to go hiking, but am having more and more trouble finding time to do it.

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I help it my elderly parents on their farm. They have a cow/calf heard and do their own haying, fix their equipment and rent their crooland out. They farm with their sister/brother-inlaw. My uncle has dementia. He is a functional confused person which I find myself more and more babysitting and directing on the farm. My father has continual severe pain that at times is debilitive, he is on strong pain meds. My mother is getting more forgetful. My house cats and very large dog are my go to for comfort, stress reduction and amusmen. My dog also helps keep tab on all 3 elderly above mentioned. He cues me when they are having more than the usual trouble, which as can be imagined is extremely useful. I love gardening, mowing, caring for my home/acreage, remodeling my house, scrapbooking and playing with my pets. I manage my stress by leaving the “farm” by 5 or 6 unless big problems happen.

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I make sure to always have supper with my family, putting away all electrics. I also belong to a couple bowling alley leagues with my spouse. I also commute to work, so I use this time as separation from work and home. I also try to find something good in almost everything happening only because there is SO much NEGATIVE and SADNESS in the world today.

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I really get the most out of being outside, walking, listening to nature, and working off some stress.

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I go to karaoke to meet up with some new friends I have made and sing my little heart out! I just love music and the relaxed atmosphere as the stress can be stifling at home. I help my 81 year old mother out even though my own health is not that great. My son recently moved in with us so now we all help each other out! :)

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Exercise, get outside, go for a walk, spend time with friends and my wife and kids, take a deep breath…all at once if I am lucky.

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My favorite way to relieve stress is my adult coloring book and listening to either beautiful music or a wonderful Karen Kingsbury audio book. It really seems to work. I also enjoy playing games because they are good for the eyes and memory.

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Oh right. I forgot to mention listening to music.

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I hear you! I enjoy Kingsbury and coloring also.

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A warm bubble bath and a cold glass of wine, with a Fragrant bath bomb.

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To destress on the go - i do deep breathing exercises. I use the 7/11 method. This helps in most any situation. To take care of myself - i take a candle lit, lavender scented, Epsom Salt soaking bath. I also enjoy playing in my art journals or making art cards on 3x5 index cards. My sweet mama loves these and sometimes she plays along with me. Then she hoards the art cards in a wooden cigar box. ❤️

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What is the 7/11 method? I am pretty sure it is not related to the store.

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The 7/11 Deep Breathing Exercise - Breathe in for a count of 7 then breathe out for a count of 11. Make sure that when you are breathing in, you are doing deep “diaphragmatic breathing” (your diaphragm moves down and pushes your stomach out as you take in a breath) rather than shallower higher lung breathing. If you find that it’s difficult to lengthen your breaths to a count of 11 or 7, then reduce the count to breathing in for 3 and out to 5, or whatever suits you best, as long as the out-breath is longer than the in-breath. Continue in this way for 5-10 minutes or longer if you have time - and enjoy the calming effect it will have on your mind and body.

This technique is effective because out-breaths stimulate what is called the Parasympathetic Nervous System, a natural bodily response that enables you to "rest and digest"as opposed to “fight or flight” (the Sympathetic Nervous System). Out-breaths decrease your blood pressure, dilate your pupils and slows your heart rate - lowering emotional arousal in the process.

This 7/11 breathing technique for relaxing quickly is the most powerful we know and has been used for thousands of years throughout the world. Practising it a few times a day will lower your overall stress levels in the long term.

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I enjoy coloring and playing games on my phone or iPad.

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What makes me relax is reading the Bible little by little. Amen.

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Watching people on the other side of a window on a cold day. Amen.

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