Managing stress is an important part of recovery. When our emotions are activated and we are stressed, it can be hard to keep in mind our long term recovery goals. Use some of these skills to manage your stress to keep yourself healthy & on track:
1- Practice mindfulness meditations in the morning. This will help set a positive tone for your day! Try deep breathing, color searches, the game "I Spy", or progressive muscle relaxation.
2-Create a routine. Creating a routine will help you stay on track each and every day, and will give you the opportunity to be excited about what you do each day. Include activities that make you happy and feel soothed during the day, such as: taking a shower, listening to a favorite song, spending time with a friend who you care for, etc.
3-Find Beauty in the Everyday. Each day, pick out 1-2 things (minimum) that make you happy, that are beautiful, or that just make you feel better. Each day, spend a few minutes being thankful for what makes you happy - this can be a part of your daily routine! Even five minutes each night of being grateful will have a positive influence on your mood, emotions, and stress.
4-Make time to journal. Talk to Peer Support Staff if you need paper, a journal, or pens. We are happy to provide you with materials to support you in your recovery! Journaling is a great way to process through experiences when we don't have another person, such as a counselor or friend to talk to. You can also opt to share your journaling with someone you love and trust to support you if you want!
5- Listen to calming music. Find a playlist or a genre of music that soothes you- everyone is different, so it might take some searching to find what works. Try google-ing "soothing playlist".
6-Exercise. Exercise is a great way to relieve stress, and you don't need a gym! Go for a walk, a hike, a swim - or try bodyweight exercises like squats, burpees, sit ups and push ups. Aim to get a little bit of movement in each day to relieve stress and boost your mood!
7-Spend Time with Friends and Family - being around people who support you is a great way to manage stress. You don't need to even talk about your stress- just enjoy being present around those who matter to you most. If you are feeling lonely, come in to The Cascade Peer and Self Help Center Monday through Friday 9am-1:30pm for some company and connection! We are happy to spend time with you :)
8-Try a breathing exercise. Some good ideas have been shared in other blog posts, but you can try any of the following techniques found here: https://www.healthline.com/health/breathing-exercises-for-anxiety
9-Cut Back on Caffeine. Caffeine can makes us more anxious and wound up, which can makes us feel stressed sometimes even when we have no reason to be. If you're feeling extra stressed, swap out your caffeine for some herbal tea, a caffeine free soda, or some flavored water.
10-Practice Progressive Muscle Relaxation. This is a tool you can use to relax each part of your body, one at a time. It is a great meditative practice you can do any time! Here is a link to an example of a progressive muscle relaxation meditation here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nZEdqcGVzo
Want to read more? Here's the link to the FULL stress management during recovery article here: https://lakesidemilam.com/blog/de-stress-addiction-recovery/