How To Stress Less • A Subtle Revelry

How To Stress Less

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Life and blogging are filled with things that make us stress. I’ve been on a bit of a campaign to try to lessen this stress whenever I can. It’s not always easy. Between juggling the kids needs, handling all that goes into producing a digital brand, and managing the basic life issues like last night’s presidential debate (Yikes… that was stressful!), life is filled with crazy moments. Today I’m excited to share my 5 favorite ideas for lowering those anxiety levels and allowing us all to stress a little less with the help of Rescue products.

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1. Cool down the soup

You’ll hear experts often talk about how much our breathing controls the stress factors, but in moments of anxiety it can be difficult to know exactly how to fix that. I taught my kids this simple way to remember about breathing and have found myself using it often. The idea is to imagine a hot steaming bowl of soup in front and to smell the soup (breathe in deeply through your nose) and then cool the soup (breathe out through your mouth). It’s kind of silly but really effective when used in stressful moments.

2. Change the out the air

When I am having a major stress moment (like when both kids are screaming at once!), I’ve found that just quickly changing out the air can help so much. This can be as simple as opening the window in the car or stepping outside of the office for fresh air. Sometimes I’ll just turn a nearby fan on or light a candle. I also recently tried out Rescue Remedy Spray when I’ve been out on-the-go. Just a couple of quick sprays into my mouth to instantly inject a bit of stress relief.

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3. Find a way to be immediately physical

A genius trick I learned from a great post Alison wrote about changing your mood. Do something immediately physical to jolt your body into a different disposition. Here in her own words:

When we apply drastic physical change to our bodies it triggers mental change. So if you want to change what’s going on in your mind, try doing something super different with your body. So like extreme heat or cold, or even jumping up and down, going for a run. And this made so much sense because BLASTING music and grinding the seat of my minivan can almost always change my mood. It’s a fairly drastic physical change to just moping in silence in my car.

4. Look at a stable object

This is a trick I learned from a helpful stewardess on a very turbulent flight home. I am not a good flyer and once the plane starts bopping around at 30k feet I basically lose my cool. On a recent flight like this the kind stewardess brought me some wine and then suggested I put my feet flat on the ground and stare straight down at them. The idea worked wonders! While the plane was rocking and everyone’s heads were bopping around, the floor of the plane actually stayed quite still. Not only was this reassuring to me, but it also calmed my heart to stare at a something that was stable at that time. I’ve tried this out in other areas of life too like finding a stable object in the distance to focus attention on when stuck in traffic, it really does calm something inside of me.

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5. Sleep rightly

Sleep can be hard to come by especially when you are feeling stressed out. I find having nightly rituals to be such an important piece of this puzzle. I try hard to turn off all electronics about an hour before bed. I like to take hot baths and since I’m Italian that usually involves sipping on a little wine. When life even then has a hard time calming down for me I will sometimes take a small dose of melatonin. I first found out about the herb when Matt and I spent a number of months in China (years ago). I started taking it for the jet lag and was amazed at how great it worked in helping me to get to sleep and stay asleep. Since then a version of it has stayed with me for traveling or particularly trying moments. I especially like the Rescue Sleep products, which include a version of the herb – it works like magic and is completely natural so I feel good about taking it when needed. If you want to pick up the right Rescue products for your stress needs, there are tons of retailers that carry them: find one near you!

How about you? Do you ever have moments of feeling overwhelmed and stressed? I’d love to add any tricks you might have for handing that to my book.

This post is sponsored by Rescue.

(Photography ©A Subtle Revelry by Erin Holland).


  1. Natalie

    20 October

    I need those pastilles in my life, and in my handbag!

    – Natalie
    http://www.workovereasy.com

  2. Barbara

    30 October

    LOVE the ‘cool the soup’ suggestion. Might make more sense to the kid – better than my constant ‘just breathe’ statement! We have Bach’s on hand for stressful or anxiety ridden situations, ever since getting the drops put into my mouth the morning I was in labor….. I just need to remember them!

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