Summer is supposed to be the most relaxing season. With warmer weather beckoning and an easier feel to the days, relaxing should be second nature during this time of year.
But for many people, summer can sometimes ramp up stress. Kids are home from school, and you’d like to spend some of their summer vacation making lasting memories with them. Or maybe the intense round of family events, block parties, weddings, baby showers, and trying to fit in vacation time has got your schedule, and you, stretched thin.
And then there’s work. Nurses’ work pressures don’t ease up just because it’s summer. But there are a few simple stress busters you can try right now that will help reduce your frustration levels and offer you some fun, too!
1. Make Bread
This one is weird, but true. The repetitive, steady kneading and pounding needed to turn dough into delicious bread is also a great way to lower your blood pressure. This summer, ditch the bread machine and make bread the old fashioned way.
Have you seen the news lately? Adults are snapping up coloring books faster than stores can keep them stocked. With companies gearing some coloring books toward adults with more intricate themes (think mandalas or Celtic patterns), grown ups are finding the meditative benefits of staying within the lines to be incredibly soothing.
3. Use Aromatherapy
For centuries, people have used scents to help influence their moods. Use peppermint to pick you up, lavender to relax you, and green apple to control your appetite. Luckily these scents can all be found at your local health food store in the form of essential oils. Mix a few drops into an unscented lotion or just put a few drops on a cotton ball to bring you instant sensory uplift.
4. Start at the Bottom
Nurses bodies work incredibly hard and one of the areas that suffers most is those poor feet. Your feet take a beating in any given day, so make yourself feel better by treating them well. Keep peppermint foot lotion (found in almost any drugstore or even the supermarket) in the fridge. When you get home, drop onto the nearest couch and slather some on your feet and legs for a soothing and instant pick me up.
5. Listen to Music
Don’t just put music on for background noise. Find music that is uplifting to you and sing along to it. If you don’t want anyone to hear you, blast your music when you’re alone in the car. If it makes you feel good, listen to it and enjoy the boost in your mood!
6. Dine Outside
Whether it’s having coffee on a park bench or grabbing dinner on a restaurant patio, there’s something so soothing and summer like about eating outside. This is one way to enjoy this very fleeting season that doesn’t involve packing, making a side dish to bring, or coordinating relatives.
Summertime is a fun season, but it’s not without stress (no matter what the magazines say!). You’re keeping track of everyone and everything and sometimes the “can’t-go-anywhere” winter weather seems appealing. But the season is so short – use a few stress busters to enjoy it even more.