Get Your Calm On!

Hi friends -

Hope you're staying cool out there! This week is hot and muggy in Chicago (aka. death to the "straight hair" attempts). Last Friday was a bit cooler, so I brought Stanley with me to the office. Had to share the photo because a) somedays I still can't believe I have a lifestyle conducive to having a dog and b) I can bring my doggie to work!! It's pretty fun and he only barked once (this is a world record for Stanley and feels SO good to make progress on doggie manners and training)!

Canines aside, it's been a fun week! Tuesday, I collaborated with WeWork to bring a "How to Take Better Care of You" workshop to the office. The main focus was about increasing your "calm," decreasing your overall stress, and discussing the benefits that certain calming techniques can have on your overall health (in the short and long term).

WeWork River North "Calm" Workshop and DIY Salad Bar

WeWork River North "Calm" Workshop and DIY Salad Bar

The WeWorkers were awesome! We all shared techniques that work best for us, so I compiled a Top 5 list of "How to get your Calm On:"

  1. Morning: How long does it take you from alarm clock ring until you're sitting at your desk? Setting yourself up for a day of success starts with being aware of how long your morning routine takes. Time it one day and then reset your alarm clock the next so that you avoid the rush! 
  2. Morning/Evening: Sleep with your cell phone in another room (aka not next to your bed). Removing the temptation to use your phone before you go to bed and immediately when you wake up can improve sleep quality, quantity and overall mindfulness.
  3. Anytime of Day: Do a short meditation - The "Breathe" app is great for short (or long) guided breathing and meditations.
  4. Anytime of Day: Take a walk! A walk breaks up the day. Use your iOS "Health" app to motivate you or purchase a Fitbit to track your progress.
  5. Anytime of Day: Stretch! Whether you're sitting at your desk, laying in bed or at the gym, take time to stretch and reconnect with your mind and body. Need guidance? Try the Sworkit app!

Becoming more mindful of the time of day where stress levels begin to increase can be key; the higher your stress levels go, the longer it can take to calm down and relax.

For instance, if you get stressed out by an unreasonable deadline change, try to catch yourself when the stress starts, step away for a 5-10 minute walk, take some deep breaths, readjust your perspective (i.e. ask yourself if there is an action you can take to change/improve the situation, think hard or ask a friend for advice if this is something that happens a lot), and you'll come back feeling refreshed, more efficient and focused, ready to take action!

How did these exercises work? Do you have anything else you recommend to keep your stress in check? Please share!

I wish you a Calm, Relaxing weekend ahead!

xoxox

Liz