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Need an ‘at-work’ stress reliever? Check this out!

Posted by Cara on March 7, 2013

Paying bills, countless meetings, filing your taxes or simply recovering from the weekend – these tips can help relieve stress and you can do them while your on the clock!

Peel an Orange and Eat ItWhy It’s Supposed to Work: Peeling releases a satisfying scent and triggers you to anticipate the refreshment of the fruit; Real Result: This stress buster can be “surprisingly relaxing” when you focus on nothing but the fruit.

Stretch Your Arms to the SkyWhy It’s Supposed to Work: If your job requires you to sit all day, standing up, stretching your arms and spreading your fingers toward the ceiling can fill your body with mood-boosting endorphin’s. Take a full breath as you reach up and slowly exhaling as you bring your arms down.

Hug Your BodyWhy It’s Supposed to Work: As soon as you wake up, this movement can release tension in your lower back. While you’re sitting at work, lift your knees up until your feet are on the seat and tuck your chin in while breathing slowly; the exercise will increase oxygen and blood flow throughout your body; Real Result: After hours of sleep, back muscles can get stiff. This stretch loosened them up quickly.

Turn Toward the SunWhy It’s Supposed to Work: “There’s something incredibly restorative about sunshine and the warmth of it on our skin. That’s because sun exposure decreases melatonin—the sleep hormone—and increases serotonin. The color yellow also has been shown to be uplifting.

Watch a Funny VideoWhy It’s Supposed to Work: Laughter releases endorphin’s into your blood and increases oxygen throughout your body, instantly improving your mood and, also has been shown to lower heart rate and blood pressure; Real Result: Enjoying a funny clip in the middle of the workday not only gave these women surveyed a much-needed break but also a healthier perspective on her workload. To keep the momentum going, learn to laugh at yourself instead of taking things too seriously.

Repeat a Relaxing PhraseWhy It’s Supposed to Work: Quietly concentrating on phrases like, “I now empty my mind of irritation, frustration, hate and worry and fill it with peace, calm, love and faith” flushes out negative thoughts, helping you enjoy the present moment; Real Result: This de-stressor provided long-lasting relief. Repeating the phrase can also make the method more effective.

Sing a Favorite SongWhy It’s Supposed to Work: Whether you’re belting out a tune in the car or the shower, singing tames tension in your face, neck and shoulders, singing boosts endorphin production while lowering the heart rate. Singing with gal pals doubles the mood-boosting power.

Take a Mental VacationWhy It’s Supposed to Work: If you can’t fly off to paradise, concentrating on the sounds, sights and smells of a dream getaway is the next best thing. Your body can’t tell if your beach visit is real or not, so it responds as though you’re on vacation, lowering blood pressure, clearing the mind and reducing fatigue.; best to try this in a quiet area.

Try a Shoulder StretchWhy It’s Supposed to Work: Placing your hands on your shoulders and bringing your elbows as far up as possible loosens tension in your neck, shoulders and back and stimulates the nerve that connects the brain to your heart, lungs, stomach and other organs; Real Result: lowers heart rate and ups relaxation.

Chew GumWhy It’s Supposed to Work: Popping in a piece loosens the jaw, which holds a lot of tension. This de-stressor is especially effective for teeth grinders, it’s also connected to higher alertness levels; Don’t like gum? Make “exaggerated funny faces,” such as scrunching up your face, raising your eyebrows high and smiling big. In addition to releasing rigidity from your jaw, you’ll zap stress from the rest of your face.

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