In an earlier blog a few weeks ago [Your Input Needed: Ways to Reduce Your Clients’ Stress], we asked you to share the advice you give to your clients. Here are the responses we got, organized by topic. We have also put together a nice PDF handout you can print and give to clients, if you wish. (Click here to request the free PDF.)

MOVE

  • Stretch in the morning upon awakening and/or before bed with deep, diaphragm breaths.
  • Take a movement break. Take a few seconds to move your neck/head in each direction. Roll your shoulders backward and forward. Do wrist circles in each direction. Bend to each side. Bend forward, arch your back, and do *gentle* torso twists. Do ankle circles in each direction. Move your legs in each direction. Repeat any area that feels like it needs it.
  • Shake it out. Shake your arms/hands, legs/feet, and body for a quick physical reset.
  • Try yoga, if applicable, before bed.

COMMUNE WITH NATURE

  • Take a walk in nature.
  • Take a walk with your dog if you have one. Not a fast walk, just a leisurely one. Stop and take a deep breath as many times as your dog smells the ground, bushes, etc. Feel the air, warmth, wind, or crispiness, even the rain.
  • Ground yourself. Go outside, place your bare feet in the grass, and breathe.

STIMULATE THE SENSES

  • Aromatherapy: This doesn’t have to be difficult or time consuming and you don’t need a diffuser (but they’re awesome if you do).
    • Buy a small bottle, such as a 2ml (also called 5/8 dram), of your favorite stress relieving essential oil(s) and carry it with you to smell when you start feeling overwhelmed.
    • You could also mix it with an unscented lotion and wear as perfume to help keep your stress level better under control throughout the day.
    • There are a lot of aromatherapy jewelry options available that allow you to have a few drops of the oil with you all day.
  • Music: Play music that you find relaxing to help keep you calm and steady through the day. If you’re already stressed, play some high energy music that you like and dance the stress away.

BREATHE

  • Stop! Take one to five s-l-o-w, deep breaths. Breathe in through the nose and out through the mouth.

BRAIN DUMP

  • Write in a journal for three consecutive pages getting out all your thoughts on paper.

SLEEP

  • Maximize the duration and quality of your sleep. A few easy steps to try:
    • Listen to a brain entrainment CD when you go to bed. It will help your brain waves reach the theta level and put you in a light sleep state. Don’t put it on repeat or you’ll never reach the state of deep sleep you need.
    • Make sure the temperature in your bedroom is within your ideal sleeping range. Adjust your sheets, blankets, and comforter to allow easy addition (if you tend to get cold) or removal (if you tend to get too warm). Use a fan on your side of the bed if you run to the warm side but your partner doesn’t. Get an electric blanket that has dual controls so you can adjust your side to your ideal warmth without affecting your partner.
    • Ditto for noise level. Use a fan or white noise machine to drown out other sounds or play soft music if you can’t sleep when it’s too quiet.

ENJOY THE PRESENT MOMENT

  • Get an adult coloring book and spend half an hour coloring.
  • Knit.
  • Cozy up with a cup of herbal tea and read a book.
  • Try meditation, guided or with music. Focus on a short, positive affirmation or envision a goal. Timing can be 5 minutes to an hour, depending on your time. There are great guided meditations on youtube.

Thanks to all the practitioners who participated!