This is a question that I sort of know the answer to of HOW I would like to deal with stress (lots of eating and shopping, preferably BOTH at the same time), but I am starting to learn some new techniques of dealing with stress, and trying my best to wean myself off the old, addictive ones (see: eating and shopping, preferably both at the same time).
WHAT ARE SOME OF MY TRIGGERS OF STRESS?
Constant Little Bun whining or general squealing
You know what I am talking about, parents.
The constant whine. You tell them “No”, they repeat insistently again that they MUST have it.
You repeat “I told you NO”, and their squealing escalates and can turn into a tantrum.
I have been consistent enough in the past two YEARS in my “No means No” approach (children are not moulded over night, that is for dang sure), that Little Bun has learned that once I say it the second time and my tone becomes a little stronger, it is time to back off, or be prepared for the wrath of Mommy which can include confiscation of beloved goods or activities (e.g. watching videos, favourite fruits, or train riding privileges).
People at work constantly hounding me
As much as I want to instinctively apologize for being too knowledgeable and awesome at my job, I WILL NOT.
I am good at my job, I work hard at it, I learn quickly, I am organized, and I am diligent.
Other people, are not so great at these things.
As a result, I end up being the Go-To Girl for all manner of questions, inquiries, design questions and so on.
This is great (yay! they need me!) but also not so great (omg why can’t they do a simple task WITHOUT HELP?)
I end up getting very stressed when it goes crazy, and ends up going on for too long. I once had a day start at 7 a.m., go all the way to 6 p.m. with about a half an hour break in between. The rest of it was constant conference calls (mostly useless garbage), meetings (again, no one takes responsibility or does anything) and lots of “we need to follow up on this with another meeting” (shoot me now!)..
Life or business-related issues
You know this little tiny things of following up with schools to see if they have available slots to sign your kid up to them, or having the tax agency re-assess your taxes AGAIN citing some dusty rule in trying to basically claw back any sort of benefits you might have gotten…
The stresses are all over the map for me, honestly.
Now, about stress relievers!
IDEAL STRESS RELIEVERS
These are the ones everyone recommends and are the best ones to do for your life, body and wallet.
I am not saying I don’t employ them, but sometimes it isn’t enough.
Taking time off / back and breathing slowly
I have started doing this at work. I am a rubber band that has been stretched too far, and very recently, I told everyone around me that I needed to work and I couldn’t get anything done.
I start cutting back on the breadth of the work they are handing off to me, and delegating as much as I can (true delegation is hard to achieve though, they will never be as accurate or as good as you).
This actually yielded some results and they took a huge load off my back for something. I can now focus on what is actually important.
Doing yoga when I can
I can do yoga at home, I have the apps, etc but for some reason, being in a room with other people, feeling the energy and having an instructor guide you along with a voice like silk, it makes you want to do better, to prove that you have a strong enough body (and mind) to hold these challenging poses.
It also really helps me because I stretch out and I love the slight ache you get in your body afterwards.
The other thing I will note is that you are not supposed to be frustrated or compare yourself to anything, but just in the past few weeks I have been practicing The Crow here and there, and just very recently, I have been able to hold it for at least TWO SECONDS. Two. Full. Seconds.
(They make it look so stupidly easy. But it is OBVIOUSLY not. I have been trying on and off to even DO this pose for one second, for 3 years.)
I know it sounds so stupid but just achieving that goal, has been the highlight of my year. I have been lax in my yoga attendance, and being able to do something I thought was near impossible before, has been amazing.
Also, it is super cute that Little Bun cheers me on. He asks me to practice my yoga at night, and then when I manage to hold The Crow and lift my feet off for even one second, he claps and giggles, and then gives me 5 high-fives, saying: Good job Mommy! Mommy did it!!!
This makes me want to practice it even more.
Get away and read a book
Again, ideal, but when I pick up my Kobo e-reader to read lately, I am thinking: Oh.. I could be doing X or Y instead, like vacuuming the floors which have not seen a vacuum in about 3 weeks, or writing more blog posts to get caught up so I don’t fall behind on blogging too!
Guilt trip extraordinaire, all pressure on myself, frankly.
Or, I try to read my book to calm down and Little Bun runs and jumps on top of me, wanting to do math, wanting to do yoga with me etc. All very cute, but very mentally exhausting.
ACTUAL STRESS RELIEVERS (e.g. Dopamine / Pleasure center rushes)
I… LOVE… shopping.
This Leece belt? Expensive ($130 USD) but made it into my closet because it is amazing.
This should come to no surprise to any of you (heck look at my blog title), but this is such a terrible one for my wallet that I am slowly trying to wean myself off it.
When I buy something, I get a rush. It is the same rush as when people exercise, except I really hate exercising (save for yoga). I am trying to replace this rush with OTHER rushes that feel just as good.
So far, no dice. The only thing that does help slow down or decrease THIS particular shopping rush, is when I go through my closet and think: dang girl, you gots lots of clothes.
…then I feel guilty and rein in my spending.
Food makes me happy.
(This was a lobster ravioli with arugula and vegetables and cheese and a cream sauce)
Chocolate, specifically KitKats have been my love as of late. I also will settle for sushi, or croissants, or anything that is yummy.
That’s about it.