5 MINUTE STRESS RELIEVERS FOR MOMS

If I could draw well, and I can’t, my brain might look like a dozen exploded eggs—one sticky, sprawling, scrambled mess. I imagine many of you may feel similarly these days, explosive and ready to explode, overloaded, messy.

While I tend to be skeptical of five minute anything let alone solutions to stress, I’m game to try anything at this point in the long Corona game. These tips might be head-scratchers at first glance (the idea of submerging one’s head in ice water to calm down seems totally nuts) but then I remind myself to practice what I preach to my son and, well, be open to new things.


Here are five stress-relieving methods offered by Jenny Taitz, author of “End Emotional Eating” and assistant clinical professor in psychiatry at UCLA:


One - Music as medicine. CALM music is key rather than music that you “love” or that validates your current emotional state (i.e. aggro, lonely, insane etc.)


Two - Mini Plunge Pool….for your face? Apparently, plunging one’s face in a bowl of ice water for 15-30 seconds activates the “dive response” reflex that, in turn, “dampens your physiological and emotional intensity.”


Three - Pace Your Breath. This is a familiar, and effective tool for me I’ve used ever since I struggled with TMJ years ago. There are a range of ways to practice this but one way is to inhale for five seconds, hold for five seconds, and exhale for 5 seconds. Keep repeating and you will feel calmer.


Four - Anchor Your Body. This is a good one too. Dig your heels into the ground, earth is preferable but a floor works, and center your body. The practice forces you to return to the present moment which is a better place to observe, and ideally release, anxious thoughts.


Five - Hyperventilate. Now this one I have not tried. The practice apparently helps if you struggle with physical manifestations of anxiety, like shortness of breath or muscle tension. By intentionally replicating these uncomfortable sensations, the body trains itself to tolerate the real stress better. Reverse psychology. Hmmm.


Let me know how and if any of these work for you! Full list below via the New York Times.

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