5 Stress Relief Tips for the Whole Family
Between working and attending school from home, avoiding crowds, and taking safety precautions when you do leave the house, it’s natural if your family feels more stress and anxiety than usual. With the holiday season upon us — and with many people celebrating this season much differently than in the past — it’s an excellent time to find new ways for stress relief for the whole family. Here are 5 ideas!
The act of practicing gratitude can help lower the heart rate, and invite a sense of calm and positivity. Start the day by having everyone announce a few things that they are grateful they get to do that day. If your child is concerned about something such as taking a math test, help them find the positive with a statement like “I’m glad I get to finally take the test I’ve been studying for.” Sharing gratitude statements is also a nice activity to do before bedtime, as falling asleep with good thoughts could lead to a more restful sleep. Before bed, ask everyone in the family to share things about their day that made them feel thankful. Not only will it make everyone feel more positive, but open communication leads to feelings of connection and security.
Studies have shown that there are numerous benefits to a regular meditation practice, including better sleep and reduced anxiety. Kids can meditate too — in fact, it’s great to teach them techniques while they are young so they can make it a life-long habit. Check out YouTube for guided mediation videos for kids, or try one of the techniques from our article, here. Whether you meditate separately or as a family, it’s a wonderful way to combat stress.
It can be hard to make time to exercise when we are busy and stressed, but that’s exactly when it’s most important to make the time. Exercise releases endorphins that increase happiness, and the exertion improves your chances of a good night’s sleep, both of which are important in stress-relief. Exercise together as family by going on a walk or hike, or playing games like tag or hide-and-seek. Movement plus time spent together will certainly improve everyone’s mindset!
Did you know that the benefits of reading include reduced stress and anxiety, feelings of happiness, and boosted brain function? Let your children pick out books to read together, or if they are old enough to read on their own, organize a family reading hour where everyone relaxes and reads at the same time. If you have younger kids, get them invested by inviting them to describe the book’s plot, or act out key scenes. Helping them fall in love with reading is another stress-relieving habit they can rely on their whole lives. Check out this article for more health benefits of reading.
Work in the Garden
Digging, planting, watering, and pruning can be very relaxing and a good way to unplug from devices and enjoy some quiet time. If you don’t have a yard, get indoor plants or a window box herb garden — they may not take as much time to tend, but any time spent focusing on a calming activity can help relieve stress.
For more tips on healthy living, check out our articles at scrippsamg.com.