The start of summer can be a really stressful time of year for a particular group of people―home-based business owners. Why? At the risk of stating the obvious―the kids are around, the weather’s nice, everyone’s off their usual routine… Shall I continue? All the distractions you’re not used to having to juggle the other three months of the year can really have you pulling your hair out.
But alas, the need to make a living rages on, doesn’t it? Deadlines must be met.
Thankfully, there are some quick tips for managing stress―courtesy of Drs. Michael F. Roizen and Mehmet C. Oz in their book Staying Young―that I’ve found helpful, many of which can be done right from the comfort of your own home office.
Here they are:
Scrunch, Breathe or Cork It!
Exercise and meditation are great stress relievers for sure, but what can you do that’s quick and easy when you’re stuck at your desk and can feel your blood pressure rising? The docs recommend the following, any of which does work…
- Scrunch up your face for 15 seconds, then release. Repeat several times to release the tension you’re holding above your neck.
- Breathe in, lick your lips and let it all out very slowly. This will help you to refocus and slow down.
- Hold a wine cork vertically between your teeth and gently bite. This will force your jaw to relax, and your jaw is a major harbinger of stress.
Talk It Out…
Having strong social networks of people we can rely on to scream when we need to is one of the best things we can do for ourselves. In fact, research shows it’s one of the most important ways we can stay healthy. If you need to blow off steam, pick up the phone and ask a friend to let you vent for a minute. You’ll feel better when you’re done, I guarantee it.
Love Your Pet
Among the proven de-stressors is having a pet. Yes, they can also be a pain in the neck. But if you work from home and need a minute to calm down, they’re a good reason to take a quick break, either in the form of a walk or even just some cuddle time. Petting an animal is actually a great way to get your body to calm down and regain some perspective. Plus, your pet will love you for it!
If you’re a home-based desk jockey, the fact that you’re not moving around much of the day is a real problem and is certainly not helping your stress levels, let alone your overall health. Even doing some simple stretches at your desk or on the floor in your office will get your blood moving and distract your mind enough that you can refocus your energy better when you get back to the business at hand.
While these tips may sound silly and even obvious, how many of you who work from home are taking even a moment to take care of yourself when you need it most during the work day? Just as I thought…something for us all to think about.