Welcome to live free creative, the podcast that provides inspiration and ideas for living a creative, adventurous, and intentional lifestyle. I’m your host Miranda Anderson and I hope that each time you listen you feel a little bit more free to live your life exactly the way you want to live it.
Hello. Hello. Welcome back to the show. This is your host Miranda Anderson. You’re listening to Live Free Creative episode 76: Three Strategies to Stay Stress Free.
I am super excited today to finish out my four part mini series on going back to the basics of intentional wellness. We talked about sleep, we talked about food, we talked about movement, and today we are talking about stress and some specific strategies to reduce your stress or to avoid stress as much as possible in your day to day life.
You may listen to me say, “avoid stress” or “don’t feel stressed out” and wonder if that’s even possible. And I can assure you that it is. It’s not only possible, but it is wonderful and as I have been working on this in my own life, I have felt an absolute burden lift off my shoulders and I can’t wait to dive into some specific ways that you can work on not feeling so much stress in your day to day regular run of the mill life. To kick off today’s episode, I want to share a segment that I like to call life lately
Life Lately: Discovering Alice
The day this episode is released, I am going to actually be in Salt Lake City visiting my family, particularly visiting my grandfather, my dad’s dad. Grandpa Joe is 101 he will turn 102 in March.
Of course, living all the way across the country from our families. Dave and I don’t get to see our grandparents or parents or siblings as often as we would like. Once in a while we’ll get a feeling that it’s time to go home and to spend some time with our loved ones.
This trip has a little bit of an extra special background and meaning for me without telling you the whole long story. The short story is that part of the reason that I’m going home to spend some extra time with my grandfather right now is to learn more about his mother.
During the Christmas holiday, my sister and I were talking and she shared with me a story that my grandfather had told her about a Christmas when he was young and a special gift that his mother had given him and as she told me this story, I remembered that I knew a little bit about my grandfather’s mother, my great grandmother, but not a lot, and for whatever reason I felt intrigued by her.
It piqued my curiosity and so I spent some time reading some old journals, trying to put together the pieces of all the different stories that I’ve heard about her throughout my life into forming this one person. As I did this, I became just enamored with her and so interested and really truly have felt such a deep connection to her and my grandmother Alice and I decided that now is the right time to go learn a little bit more about her, especially while my grandfather is still here and he can tell me firsthand memories of spending time growing up with his mom.
One of the things that struck me as I have been thinking about her and feeling close to her is that I really think she has a fascinating story and that I would really love to be part of telling that story, so I’m not sure exactly what this is going to look like yet, but I am definitely going to learn as much as I can about her.
I’m looking forward to spending some time with my grandpa and recording some memories that he has and I’m also going to visit some other relatives that knew her personally and I have records of many of the houses that she lived in as a young mother in Salt Lake City and I’m excited to go check those out and just dive deep for a couple of days as I get to know my great grandmother Alice a little bit better.
This is kind of a last-minute thrown together trip. I felt like I wanted to make it happen and when your grandfather is almost 102 there is no time like the present so it will be a really fun and also I’m sure very tender weekend as I spend some time getting to know my great grandmother.
Let’s Talk About Stress
Okay, friends. Let’s talk about stress. Stress. It’s such a funny word. Even just like this weighty, weighty feeling comes around when we talk about stress.
Something that I have been thinking about in the last couple of days as I’ve been preparing to record this episode is how sometimes stress is just an identity. It can be kind of our default when we don’t know how else to feel or we don’t really, we haven’t chosen an emotion for a long time.
I know that I personally lived with stress and overwhelm as my default emotion when I didn’t feel anything else when I wasn’t, you know, particularly overjoyed. For some reason I had this underlying feeling of there must be something that I should be doing right now. I must be behind. I have lots. I have lots of really important things going on. I definitely don’t have enough time to handle everything that I need to do. My life is so full. My life is so busy. That was kind of the underlying feeling of my life.
What a horrible baseline. As I think back on a few years ago that really my most often felt emotion was stress. I feel so sad for that, for that person that I was who believed and clung to the idea that stress was a feeling of importance. That being stressed meant that you must be doing something important in your life. You must be doing something significant that people who were accomplishing great things did not do so without great amounts of stress and overwhelm and hustle.
I now know that all of those ideas are completely false and not only that, they’re really dangerous. It is really dangerous to spend your life in a state of fight or flight. And that is what stress is at its very baseline, basic level stress.
Stress is our body’s response to perceived danger.
The feeling of stress is our body’s response to being in danger or feeling like it needs to protect itself. The adrenaline, the heart pounding, the eyes focused in the heat and you know, digestion shutting off so that the energy can go to our limbs so that if we need to flee, we can.
This is a very natural response that our body undertakes when it believes that we have something to do right now in order to save our life. Most of us don’t often encounter true danger in that way where it is so necessary for every single one of our systems to focus in on allowing us to just to flee the scene. However, because of a lot of the ways that we’ve set up our lives with these arbitrary deadlines and these ideas of competition with the other people around us, whether true or not, you know, whether you’re actually in competition or it’s just a perceived competition.
The way that we are continually running the race for more and better and bigger and faster and stronger. All right. Now we have created lives where this can become our default, where there is always something more to do and if we don’t do it now we feel like we’re getting behind and we can put our bodies and minds in a constant state of chronic stress.
Stress can be an identity.
When I was in nursing school, I remember going to a class about stress and it was probably about the hormone systems or something and we were learning about stress and we learned about stress and use stress, how one type of stress was negative and the other type of stress was positive. This “eustress” as it was called, was engaging and motivating and allowed us to perform at a really high level, our highest ability for a good amount of time.
Like it was the added boost of energy that we needed to get through to the finish line. I remember thinking, okay, well that’s the kind that I feel because when I feel the, the stress, you know, I’m, I, you know, I’m always stressed out when I feel that stress, it is inviting me to do more. It’s inviting me to check more boxes on my list. It’s inviting me to study a little harder. Um, you know, all of the things that I wanted to get done that I felt were necessary for me to do as quickly as possible.
I thought all of this stress must be used stress in my life because I am getting a lot done and I always have been a person who got a lot done. I have always been a high energy, highly motivated, high aspirator or high achiever. And I truly believed, and this is going back to what I was mentioning in the beginning about identity around stress, I truly believed that all of that stress was necessary in order for me to be successful.
I thought that that stress, and I like to just think of it as, Oh well this is my positive stress and I have to feel this way. I have to muscle through in order to get things done. This is how someone gets things done. I thought that that was the only way to do it. That stress was the pathway.
The problem with that, the problems with chronic stress and living our lives with an underlying feeling of we must do the next thing or else we will die. You know, this physiological sensation of fight or flight. The problem is that it wreaks havoc on our bodies and minds.
Stress negatively affects our entire bodies.
That reaction, the physiologic reaction to stress or where our sympathetic nervous system gets activated was meant to be a temporary solution. When a saber tooth tiger is approaching you and your family, that you’re able to gather your young ones up, toss them on your back and runaway climate tree or, or go into a cave and push the rock in front of it. I don’t know, whatever the cavemen did, and then your body could flip back into its basic state of rest and being able to just get to kind of a normal.
When we put our bodies through chronic stress, through a continuous feeling or almost, you know, our, our default emotion, whenever something happens we get, we feel stressed out, we feel panic, we feel worried, we feel anxious.
Exposing our bodies to a chronic feeling of stress causes problems up and down. It can lead to anxiety, longterm anxiety and depression. It can affect our digestion. All of you know, you wouldn’t necessarily think that every time you feel stressed out, your digestion temporarily shuts down because when you’re running away from a tiger, your body doesn’t need to digest. It needs all of that energy in your muscles for running. So every, the, the more stressed out you feel, the less your body is able to digest.
Normally it can lead to headaches, it can lead to heart disease, it can lead to major sleep problems, weight gain, memory and con concentration, impairment. Every single aspect of our bodies and our minds is affected by stress.
I was listening to a podcast about health. It was a podcast on mindbodygreen with a doctor who was talking about ways to live longer like this. I mean, this is a great podcast, right? How we live as long as possible. We should actually just interview my grandfather. He could tell us all about it. I’m sure.
One of the things that stuck out to me so much however, was after the doctor talked about sleep, about nutrition and about movement, which there’s a reason that I’m talking about these particular aspects of our basic intentional health. In this mini series, he talked about stress and he said of all of the things that affect our bodies negatively, that affect our underlying health and wellbeing negatively, stress is the the worst offender and it is the least often addressed.
It’s a lot easier for us to say, okay, I’m going to try to get eight hours of sleep or I’m going to try to eat more veggies or I’m going to go on a 30 minute walk every day than it is for us to accept that we have way more control over our thoughts and emotions than we think we do.
I can tell you that for years as I lived my life in a almost constant state of stress and overwhelm, I believed that this was not a choice. I thought this was outside of me that the circumstances of the things that I had to do, that that needed to get done, the dishes in the sink, the kids that needed to be taken care of, the work that needed to get done, the projects that I had to finish, I believed that these were non optional things, that everything in my life was happening to me and that the only thing that I could control was just making it happen, like getting it done and checking the boxes.
Everything is optional, including feeling stress.
I failed to understand then what I understand now and that is that everything is optional, including the way that I feel. Let me say that again. Everything is optional, including the way that I feel, which means that if I don’t like the way that I’m feeling, if I don’t want that feeling of stress and overwhelm every single day in my life, that I get to choose to let it go because it’s optional.
I get to choose to, to think and feel something different and that is what I’ve been doing for the last several years and that is why instead of a constant state of stress, stress and overwhelm, my most often felt emotion at this point in my life is gratitude and abundance and ease. I can’t, I can’t even explain the difference, not in the day to day actually what I’m doing in my life, but in the how I’m feeling about it.
That has made everything just so much more wonderful. I have always really liked my life. I’ve really enjoyed it, but there were times that I felt like I needed to escape it because the day to day was hard and it was good, but it was just so hard and I don’t feel like that right now. Not that hard things aren’t happening, but that I can choose to live my life with ease, even in the face of hard things happening to me, that the way that I choose to handle them is always in my court.
Three Strategies for Staying Stress-Free
And so today I want to share three specific strategies for not feeling stressed all the time. These are my three strategies for staying stress free. And this doesn’t mean that you won’t have days or moments when you feel super stressed out or even weeks. So you know when there’s things going on and you’re learning to have to manage your mind better and to manage your emotions better.
I’m still working on it. Absolutely. I definitely had a day last month when I woke up and was just like, Oh my gosh, so overwhelmed. I like woke up and felt like a wall of overwhelm, which I’m not used to anymore because I’m used to feeling everything a little bit easier right now and I don’t know what happened, combination of hormones and external factors and a big launch that I had going on.
I kind of woke up into this wall of overwhelm and I asked Dave if he would take the kids to school for me and I decided that instead of what I wanted to do, what my mindset I needed to do, which was like get up and just get a bunch of stuff done, like I needed to just push through it and like work really hard. I decided that in order to get through the feelings that I was having, that I just needed to rest.
It was like the direct contradiction to what I thought I needed to do. But I knew that rest, that if I was feeling so overwhelmed, I was feeling so stressed out and feeling so emotional that rest was going to help me more than action in that particular moment. And so I spent the day in bed reading and meditating and journaling and sleeping and by the afternoon I had sort of eased myself out of that state of stress and overwhelmed. That was just perception.
There was nothing actually happening there. No one was coming to get me. There was no saber tooth tiger. It was just thoughts, thoughts about things that were, that were possibly going to happen that weren’t even happening. Worries and anxiety and just allowing that to allowing myself to embrace it and to feel it and to know that everything was actually okay.
Learning that in the moment I was fine was really a powerful experience and something that I’m trying to lean into more and more in my life. So let’s talk about three strategies to staying stress free in your life.
Strategy 1: Accept What You Cannot Control
Strategy number one is this, accept to what you cannot control. Now I know that’s like a big, huge one that we all will work on for our whole lives probably because we want to just control everything. We want everything to go exactly the way that we think it should. But when we release the expectation that everything is going to be the way we think it should be and accept what is happening, that takes a huge burden off of our shoulders.
The two ways that I want to address doing this, accepting what you can’t control are the following. One of them is to raise your tolerance for things that bother you.
Raise your tolerance of things that bother you.
This is something that I learned from Ralphie in an episode about intentional parenting, parenting on purpose. She talks about how when we get stressed out about our kids, a lot of times it’s because they’re simply behaving as kids, but we wish they wouldn’t behave like kids. We wish they would just like be quiet little perfect children. You know, like robots.
When we are annoyed by things or stressed out by some things, a lot of times it’s simply that we need to raise our tolerance of things that we don’t like very much and understand that that’s the way that, that some things are.
I can imagine that for people who get really stressed out in traffic, if you live in a city where there’s a lot of traffic that you may feel stress and overwhelm every time you hit traffic, you can’t control the traffic. And it is something that in a lot of cities happens every single day in the morning and the afternoon. So rather than being stressed out about it, try to raise your tolerance to the point where you know that this is what’s happening.
Your expectation is that you will be in traffic for two hours if you leave at three o’clock on a Thursday afternoon and you avoid the stress that you would otherwise feel because this is simply what is. So you raise your tolerance without saying, you know, I wish that all the other cars would just get off the road so I could get where you’re going. You recognize that this is the way that some things are, and allow yourself to raise your tolerance of the, of not liking some things and then all of the sudden you don’t feel so bad about it because you raised your tolerance and you feel fine.
I’ve really done this lately with my kids. Some of my kids less desirable behaviors, not bad things, but just, you know, when they’re, I’m talking really loudly or like singing a song in the car, like an annoying song, you know, and you’re just like, Oh man. Rather than saying, telling them to stop over and over, I just simply let no, I, I tell myself this is the way that kids are.
If it’s not inappropriate behavior and it’s not hurting anyone, then it’s great for them to sing a little song. And even if it annoys me, I’m going to raise my tolerance in order to allow my children to, to be kids and to just be themselves. Another area in my life that I have really raised my tolerance. And I guess the second point I was going to make here, the first is to raise your tolerance and things you don’t like in the second point is to adjust your expectations to more closely match reality.
Adjust your expectations.
Both of these go hand in hand with the state of my house on a regular day. I don’t know where we all got the idea that our houses need to be clean all day long, like magazine worthy all day long that you would walk in the door and there would be nothing out. That’s just simply not the way that your house will look if people are actually living in your house.
If you, if you have a staged home that’s just like for for photographs only then maybe, but if people are living in the house, if they’re actually using items, books, toys, dishes, those things should be out a good portion of the time because that means that they’re being used. That someone’s actually, you know, playing with the toys are actually eating lunch on the dishes. I don’t know where we got this idea that every single time we walked through a room, it should be put together.
I’ve started to totally adjust my expectations in the last couple of years and it has just been a life changer for me to not think that everything always had to look nice, that I know that when it is time to clean up the house, that everything has a place and we know where those places are and we can put them all away. But in the middle of the afternoon, on a regular day, there’s stuff out all over my house.
Instead of being frustrated and stressed out by that, now my expectation is adjusted to the point where I know that that simply means that we are living our lives really well, that my kids love to play, that I’ve been cooking because there’s dishes in the sink, muddy footprints back and forth between the front door and the back door. It means that my kids have been playing outside and rather than feeling like I need to follow them around with a mop.
I’m serious that there were years that I really would just like kind of go behind my toddlers and like cleanup as they took things out. I just put it all away because I just wanted to clear the path and how, I mean maybe I sound neurotic, but maybe some of you relate to this idea of wanting things to always be put away.
I’ve adjusted my expectation to now that I know that things can be put away and you know when we clean up the house every couple of days we’ll clean it up all the way and at least once a week I like do an actual deep clean, but for the most part things are out, things are out, blankets are on the floor, shoes are, you know by the front door and dishes are in the sink at laundry’s in rotation, whatever stage, you know. Sometimes that means it’s in the laundry bin. Sometimes that means the baskets on the table because I haven’t folded it yet. Sometimes that means they’re in piles in the kid’s room because they’re getting ready to put them away.
These are now signs of life. Rather than feeling frustrated and overwhelmed that my house wasn’t always perfect picture perfect or styled. Now it feels like we’re living in our house and it’s totally okay because my expectation has been adjusted now maybe a few years ago I would’ve said, I don’t want to adjust my expectation to the point where I think that my house, I didn’t want to think that it was okay for my house to be messy. I wanted my house to look clean all the time.
That didn’t change the fact that it wasn’t clean all the time. The only thing that that expectation did was reinforce the overwhelm that I felt when we were actually just living our normal life. So you see how it doesn’t necessarily matter. You get to choose still whether you adjust your expectation or not, but in what you choose as your expectation, you’re also choosing the way that you feel or your outcome.
And so you can choose to really, really want the dishes to always be done on time and feel stressed out all the time. Or you can choose to understand that it’s okay if the dishes don’t get done single night and you can go to bed with dishes in the sink if that means that you get to allow yourself to feel better, to not feel so stressed out or overwhelmed.
Adjusting our expectations absolutely adjust our level of stress and we get to choose the way that we want to feel. I hope that those personal examples of my own individual neuroses are helpful and that if there are some of you out there who relate to that, that you feel like in solidarity with me being a little crazy sometimes around the uh, the cleanliness and the organization and how wonderful it can be when you let that go a little bit.
Strategy 2: Stay Present
Strategy number two for reducing your stress is simply to stay present, stay present. I say simply, but it’s actually not that simple. This is something that requires practice.
Oftentimes our stress or overwhelm circle around things that have yet to happen. We’re worried about something or we’re anticipating something or we’re looking at this really long list of things that we need to do or we imagine that things might happen if we don’t X, Y, Z, and we start to create this whole imaginary circumstance that doesn’t actually exist because of the what if’s.
When I start to feel that way, the question that I like to ask myself is this, what is happening in my life at this very moment?
At this very moment, I’m sitting in my room recording a podcast. My kids are home from school today. They’re downstairs. I told them they could watch a movie on Disney+ while I record, they’re being very quiet. The sun is shining. I have a cup of water next to me. I made my bed this morning so it looks nice and fluffy and comfortable. I haven’t yet taken a shower today, but I did sleep very well last night. My body feels comfortable. We went on a hike earlier today and I feel pretty good right in this very moment. Nothing is urgent.
Everything is just as it should be. I can feel the weight of my body sitting here on this chair, my feet grounded on the floor, my hands a little bit cold, tucked in between my legs as I record.
Almost nothing terrible happens in the moment. Almost everything that we dislike or dread or that causes us stress and overwhelm is something that happens in the future. Something that that worries us or that makes us anxious or an expectation that we’ve created. When we bring it all back into the moment, into this very moment, what is happening right now and we stay present, everything usually feels okay.
Check into your five senses.
I like to check into my five senses. I shared this exercise way back in an episode about checking in rather than checking out, and I’ve mentioned it a couple times in the last couple of weeks because this is such a powerful way to become a present, especially if you aren’t yet in a habit of meditation, regular, you know, mindfulness and quiet.
Checking into your five senses is how you can bring yourself instantly into the moment.
So what do I see right now? I see my green door of my bedroom in front of me and my nicely made bed and my rainbow colored books in the bookcase and Quincy’s half eaten dog bone on the floor from where she was chewing it up last night.
What do I feel? I feel the hard seat that I’m sitting in this wooden chair. I feel the coziness of the inside of my socks and my toes. I feel the hat on my head.
What do I smell? Luckily, not too much. Hmm. I have the leftover of a Cedar Balsam candle on my bedside table that is leftover from Christmas. So if I bring that over, I can smell that. Otherwise my bedroom actually smells very neutral. I think that’s a good thing.
What do I hear? if I’m very quiet, I can hear the hum of my heater. I can hear the tiniest bit of the kid’s show playing downstairs. I can hear what sounds like a little insect somewhere buzzing around one of the lights and the fixtures maybe in the hallway. For the most part, it’s quiet.
What do I taste? The coolness of the water that I have next to me. Just finish some delicious roasted grape and Gorgonzola and pizza. After we went on a hike, we went to a cute restaurant nearby and grabbed some pizza for lunch, lingering taste of garlic and grapes.
You see how checking into your five senses instantly brings you into the present. It takes you out of your head and into awareness of where you are right this moment. That for me instantly starts to reduce my stress. It brings me from that fight or flight response into my resting response where my heart rate can go down and I can start to breathe easier and I can tell myself that everything is okay right in this moment, that there’s nothing that I have to do right this moment that I’m going to be okay.
Sometimes getting into the present moment requires that we release some of the other expectations of timeline that we have out there. If you’re feeling really, really stressed out right before you go to church, for example, you’re trying to get all the shoes on the kids and get the hair combed out and make sure everyone had something to eat for breakfast so they don’t complain during the meeting or whatever it is. Sometimes that stress for me is not worth being on time.
I would rather take a deep breath, bring myself back into the moment and know that it is better off for all of us if we take a little bit more time to be kind and to be calm and to help put things together in order and then to get into the car and go. Even if we’re a few minutes late, we arrive with peace and with presence rather than with frustration, overwhelm, stress and tears and that that is more important.
I choose that, and again, this is an adjustment of expectation. This is accepting what you cannot control. Sometimes people are going to take a little longer than you think you will, whatever the, the thing is that’s overwhelming and stressful for you. Sometimes you can’t control that, but you can always allow yourself to make the decision towards peace.
You can allow yourself to make the decision to release some of those unnecessary or even unhelpful expectations. And this doesn’t mean that you don’t try again, you know, wake up a few minutes earlier the next time or you know, try to work on the dishes a different time. It doesn’t mean that your whole house all of a sudden goes crazy and your kids never wear shoes and that nothing ever actually happens. It means that the presence that you bring to the activities that you do have a sense of ease rather than a sense of urgency.
Strategy 3: Breathe, Be Still, Be Grateful
Strategy number three is actually three in one. Strategy number three is breathe. Be still and be grateful. This one really connects to number two.
As soon as you’re able to stay present, pull yourself back into the moment. Realize that what’s happening right now is just fine. Then you can breathe. Be still and be grateful when you start to recognize in this place everything that’s going right.
This pause of being still gives you a chance to flip the script to change the storyline rather than whatever you’re telling yourself is going wrong. Recognize what is going right. Recognize how blessed you are. All of the incredible things that are happening in your life. All of the moments that you’ve been through that have brought you to this place delivered you to exactly where you need to be, which is exactly where you are right now.
And how looking back on that and recognizing that your pathway has always been correct, allows you to accept and understand that what is coming is also going to be just right. This breathing and being still and being grateful for me looks like a regular daily meditation practice.
By default, my energy of my body is not stillness. Maybe you know that about me. If you have followed along with my life and my story for any amount of time, you know that I love to do things. I love to get stuff done. I love to write a list. I love to do a project. I love to make things. I love to make things happen. My default energy is not stillness, it’s busy-ness.
So this is something that I am practicing. I have had to teach myself how to be comfortable with sitting still for 10 minutes. Just breathing and believing that where I am sitting in stillness is the right place. That through finding that stillness, through finding that peace, I’m actually inviting it into every other area in my life.
Now what happens when I start to feel all of that stress build, you know, something unexpected happens or my schedule gets thrown off or or I haven’t, you know, an unwanted result in my life instead of automatically jumping into frantic, hustle, overwhelmed, stress, action.
Because I’ve taught myself through practicing, you know, regular daily practice, how to breathe, be still and be grateful. I can find that place in the middle of, of what would otherwise be panic and start to make more levelheaded decisions from that place of sort of peace rather than jumping straight into stress and making decisions from a place of fight or flight.
What happens when you are calm in the face of, of unexpected or even dangerous circumstances is that you’re able to make better decisions because your mind is open. You’re not constricted. You know, all of that clenching feeling that you have when you’re stressed out doesn’t exist.
When you’re in a state of calm and peace in that calmness and openness, you’re able to see true solutions, things that will actually make a difference. You’re able to be a lot more thoughtful and creative then when you are stressed out and frustrated, so it’s actually more beneficial unless the stress that you’re feeling is because you actually do need to run away or like climb a tree or something physical.
Most of the stress that we sense in our lives right now is not that in those situations, absolutely runaway in every other situation. Finding this place of peace, calm and clarity is going to be better off for the solutions that you find and also to keep your body from being chronically overworked to the point that you’re destroying a lot of your physiological and mental abilities.
Sleep, Nutrition, Movement, and Stress all affect each other.
Of course I ended with stress in this mini series because sleep is going to reduce your stress.Good nutrition is also going to reduce your stress. Regular physical activity is going to work to reduce your stress. If you slowly work on these four areas, they all will contribute to each other.
They all start to balance each other out and as you improve in one area of very basic wellness, your other areas are also able to improve at the same time. Everything starts to work together for your good.
So the three strategies to stay stress-free are number one, to accept what you cannot control by raising your tolerance of things you dislike and adjusting your expectations to become more aligned with reality.
Number two, stay present. When you start to feel that overwhelm and stress, ask yourself what is happening right now, and if you need to check in with each of your senses to pull yourself back into the moment, then you’ll be able to have a little bit more clear picture of what’s true and real.
And number three, breathe. Be still and be grateful. I love encouraging a regular meditation practice. I use the Headspace app. There’s also tons of free apps out there. I being able to just find five, 10 15 minutes a day to sit and be still not only teaches yourself how to come to this place of calm, it also adds to the feeling overall that you have plenty of time. I think a lot of our stress as especially as wives and moms and women circles around timeframe, that we think that we need to be further ahead than we are or we don’t have enough time to do the things that we want to do.
When you give yourself 5-10-15 minutes a day to simply sit and relax and breathe and feel gratitude, what you’re doing is reinforcing to yourself that you have plenty of time and that practice in and of itself of allowing yourself to recognize that you’ve got plenty of time. If you have 10 minutes to just sit and breathe, then you’ve got plenty of time for everything else in your life that will help you to see things more clearly and to understand the truth of what’s actually happening in your life.
I hope that you’ve enjoyed these tips and this podcast conversation about stress. This is a big one, and if you can start to exercise even one of these strategies in a way that helps you to feel a little more calm, a little more grateful, a little more peaceful in your everyday life, then it will have been worth it.
Thank you so much for being here. This concludes our mini series on basics of intentional wellness. I have loved hearing all of your insights as people have shared on Instagram, and so many of you have enjoyed this series, so thank you so much for listening along.
Make sure that you are subscribed so you don’t miss any of our future episodes. I have so many fun shows coming up this year. I cannot wait to share them all with you.
If you’re loving the show and you would love an added episode every single month, consider joining Patreon at the podcast plus level, patreon.com/livefreecreative is where you can sign up for $6 a month. You get a bonus episode with a worksheet as well as an invitation to join our self-development digital book club, which is super duper fun and I would love to have you there.
Also, if you haven’t checked out my book More Than Enough, make sure that you grab it on audible Kindle or on Amazon. My book shares the story of our family’s journey to practical minimalism and in it you will find so many insights just like the things that I share every single week in this podcast. That’s all for today. I hope you have a wonderful week. I can’t wait to chat with you again next week. See you later.