Life often seems to be a never-ending cycle of jumping from one task to the next. Although it’s imperative in recovery to avoid too much downtime and boredom to prevent relapse, you also don’t want to go to the opposite extreme and keep yourself so busy that it leads to a mounting amount of stress. Stress, just like boredom, can serve as a trigger to use drugs or alcohol. Developing healthier coping mechanisms is key so that you can achieve more balance in your life.
When in a treatment program at a California rehab center, it can be easier to de-stress because you are so focused on the elements of your recovery and developing these types of skills. Transitioning back into the community and taking on more responsibility can test what you have learned, however. You are put in different situations where there is more opportunity to become stressed and overwhelmed. But even in the face of a busy schedule, there are still ways that you can incorporate stress-relieving activities and try to maintain a more positive frame of mind.
Simple Ways to Reduce Stress Everyday
Whether you’re at work, school, home, or out in the community, it can be easy for stress to creep up on you. Your goal is to keep this stress managed and at bay. By having a variety of approaches at your disposal, you can learn to incorporate more relaxation into your day and ease tension. Here are a few simple ideas that you can do almost anywhere:
- Take a walk. A change of scenery can be good, as can staying active. Instead of sitting in the break room during lunch, or staying holed up in your house, go for a walk around the neighborhood or local park. Use this time to clear your mind, breathe in the fresh air, and try to relax.
- Practice deep breathing. When you’re feel tense or anxious, close your eyes and do some breathing exercises. Feel your lungs expanding and let the stress roll off. Re-center and refocus yourself so that you can get back to being productive. Meditating can be valuable as well, and doesn’t require any special equipment. Just find somewhere comfortable and take a few minutes to yourself.
- Keep a fidget in your desk, purse, or car. This is just a small toy or object that you can work with your hands. Perhaps a stress ball, a tangle toy, putty, or something else you can manipulate. Keeping your hands busy can help to calm your mind and allows some people to think and focus better. As you’re working through challenges, you’re also relieving stress.
- Grab a pen and paper just start writing. Let your thoughts flow freely and get out everything that’s on your mind and making you feel stressed. You may keep a special notebook or journal for this at home where you gather all of your thoughts. Another option is to force yourself to write down a few positives, or things you’re grateful for. This will help to change your train of thought and turn it into something more soothing. When you look on the bright side, the things you’re stressing about don’t always seem so bad.
- Listen to music. Keep your iPod or headphones nearby so you can take a quick break with a favorite song or two. Let yourself zone out and unwind as you’re soothed by the rhythm of the music or words in the lyrics. Music can have a very calming effect for some people. If you’re at home, you could even create your own music on the piano, guitar, or other instrument you have. Channel your stress into something more creative and productive.
- Plan breaks into your schedule. If you know you have a busy day coming up, clear a block of time in the evening to do something you enjoy. Maybe it’s going to the playground or out for ice cream with your kids, dinner with friends, a game of golf, or relaxing with a good book. Put it on your calendar so you can plan around it and make your own wellbeing a priority.
Find what works for you. Everyone has their own go-to resources for motivation, encouragement, and stress relief. Try new things to keep it fresh and explore other opportunities. You never know what will resonate with you. Being proactive, and having a plan in place to deal with stressful times, can help you to stick with your recovery and reduce risk of relapse.
Learn the strategies and skills you need for long-term recovery and to overcome the challenges of addiction at Chapters Capistrano. With a customized treatment plan, you can figure out what works best for you and addresses your individual needs. Contact Chapters Capistrano today at 888-973-0230 and start a new chapter in your life; one which is free from addiction.