An antidote to busy-ness and stress

There is the dream of how summers should be, and how they feel to me… Stressful. And right now, the back to school season is ramping up and with it, all the additional tasks that need to be accomplished. Getting school supplies and clothes is just one small thing. The forms, forms, forms and signing up for extracurricular activities. Physicals to be done and documentation to collect -Oh, and you didnt’ submit that form correctly, go back to the start, do not pass go and do not collect a check mark on your list. Dentist appointments too, because why not… As you can imagine, I feel my stress level ramping up.

The house has gotten progressively messier over the summer because there is more living being done in it. And I haven’t had time and energy to deal with it while I am driving kids around more and accommodating requests for attention and fun. It was summer after all, and I have always had a dream of summers spent poolside and going on road trips and outings.  And I packed those things into this summer. Well, the poolside lounging was only one day, but we went camping, to the beach, the city, the mountains and concerts. We did crafts and cooking and shopping and exploring. I did not play Pokemon Go, but I facilitated it.

But the messy house and full days have taken their toll. I like a regular routine and a relatively tidy environment and the feeling that I can remember what is going on and can attend to it. And right now I feel like there is too much to do and no time. I feel I am forgetting things and getting time for myself seems impossible. Exercise falls by the wayside and with it my stresslevel increases. The way I react is to check my calendar obsessively and to sit down and write lists again and again as if I can organize my stress away. I decided that rather than finding another productivity hack, I would look for ways to calm down.

I started out with my mini retreat on Sunday evening, which I posted on Instagram. Then as I drank some tea and relaxed in bed I looked for ways to change my outlook and relieve my stress. Here is a roundup of some favorite advice I found:

First of all, It seems counterintuitive that stress may be beneficial, but mentally reframing it as a challenge is helpful. So the first thing to ask yourself is: What is the challenge in this situation? What are the benefits?

Stressed for Good: Surprising New Science about Stress

Second is prioritizing what you you really need to do, and letting go of what you don’t need to do. I create a let go of list as well as a list of things not to do. Marc and Angel have all kinds of life hacks just like this one.

3 Ways to Find Your Peace When Life Feels Overwhelming

This is another great article about mindset and not clinging to outcome. For me this is a work in progress.

Let Go of Stress: Nothing to Cling To

Similar to a mini retreat, putting together a set of stress relieving tactics and items can help you find relief for the moment.

Build Your Own Stress Relief Emergency Kit

Here is another article of someone who feels they are in the same situation.

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