This week was the worst. Well, there were good things like getting a 100 on a lab paper and a 99 on a cell physiology exam. But for some reason, my professors were trying to make me snap by loading me down with work. Work that I deem ‘busy work’..which is the worst kind of work.
This week I had another big lab paper due, two assignments due on the same day, an exam to study for on Thursday, and I somehow managed to get behind four chapters in Animal Phys, which is the class that I’m doing the worst in. So all of this worry and anxiety seeped into my little heart and I couldn’t sleep, think straight or hardly even function.
The fact that I’ve developed the new habit of leaving the fridge open is evidence that I’ve lost my mind. I never leave the fridge open, but this past week it’s all I do! Every time I walk into the kitchen, the fridge door is ajar and I’m all “Oops, I forgot to close the fridge again.” Craziness.
I had insomnia for four days straight, which is nothing when compared to the weeks when it used to take over…but even four days is enough for me to sit up at 2 a.m. and cry into my fluffy robe…over nothing and everything at the same time. Thankfully, the assignments got done (like I knew they would), the lab report finished, the test taken, and I’m now only behind two chapters in animal phys. I wanted to do a blog post about ways I handle stress and try to lighten the load. I figure if these things work for me, then maybe they would help you when your little ol’ heart is heavy too 🙂
1. Hug your husband. Tight. For like, five minutes straight. Tight like a boa constrictor (“Hug him like a bo-a constricta” – to the tune of “Shake it like a Polaroid picture”) and don’t let him go no matter how much he squirms and gasps for air to breathe.
2. Literally, jump around. With your kids, your dog, your hamster..whatever other live being you have in the house will work. This is a good song to get jumping around too 🙂
3. Do a puzzle or flip through a magazine. Do something that lets you zone out, even if it is for just a few minutes. Jason and I used to be really big into puzzles. Instead of coming home and sitting in front of Big Bang Theory, we would sit at the table and work on a puzzle together. It gives you convo time with your loved one and it’s an activity together that doesn’t involve just sitting in the same room staring at a tube. (Let it be know that we watch Big Bang Theory after we’ve had enough puzzle time) 🙂
4. Bake. I freakin’ love to bake. It makes my house smell good and I love making things from scratch. I like to give Jason the stare-down as he takes the first bite, my eyes wide and my face so close to his that he can feel my breath on his cheek. (Haha! No, I don’t get that close…most of the time). 😀 This week I made homemade (dough and everything!) cinnamon rolls. And they were amazeballs.
5. Know when to step away from whatever is stressing you out. In my case, it is schoolwork. I’ve been getting up at 6 or 7 every day this week and trying to catch up in Animal Phys. I will work on it for about 2-3 hours and when my brain literally starts hurting and I find myself rushing through the material, I stop. I go do something else, whether it is blog reading, cleaning or dancing with my broom, it’s something else. It gives my brain time to soak in what I’ve just read and learned without driving myself crazy. Most of the time. Sometimes all it takes is an hour and I’m like “Gahhh! I need to get out of here!”.
6. Find good wine.
This is a local (Vale, NC) wine that is awesome. This family-owned winery is actually where Jason and I got married this past May 🙂 Wine is good. Yes, very good indeed.
7. Exercise. Four years ago I went to the hospital with severe chest pain only to be told I was having a massive anxiety attack. The doctor asked me what I do to calm down and relax, I answered “I exercise.” He said “No, what do you do that is relaxing?” I replied “I exercise.” He suggested that I find other things to do besides exercise when I’m stressed out, and then he tried to prescribe anxiety pills…no thanks. Granted, back then I didn’t really do a lot of relaxing things. But today I do puzzles and all the stuff mentioned above, and so I think exercising when I’m stressed is OK for me. Actually, it’s wonderful. There is nothing like going for a run when you have so much steam to run off. I find myself working harder and kicking butt at my workouts when I’m super stressed, and I always finished feeling a little better..with a little better perspective on the things going on in my life.
And if you can run in the woods, well, then it’s pure heaven 🙂 Which brings me to my next stress-reliever…
8. Go be in the woods, or around a bunch of trees. Nature makes everything feel a lot calmer (unless your standing in the middle of a tornado, where… it’s actually pretty calm…so..nevermind). The quiet, the birds, the squirrels rustling the leaves, it is the best kind of therapy there is. I found myself in my back yard a lot this week. Bird-watching and cow-watching 🙂
9. Have lunch with your mom. This Friday I had lunch with my mom and it was wonderful. She is such a great lady. We talked and talked about what is going on in our lives, how God is moving in and through us, I think getting together helped both of us this week. We were able to encourage each other and just be there to listen to each other. It was so nice ❤
10. Have a doughnut. Or fries. Or that fast-food, unhealthy item that keeps popping into your head when you pass by the establishment. For me, it was a doughnut. It’s usually fries, but this week I kept thinking of doughnuts and so I got one. And it was awesome. Even if it doesn’t involve food, indulge in yourself a tiny bit. Splurge on dinner out, go get a nice sweater, paint your fingernails a different color, download a new song to your iPod, do something that makes you happy without regrets. Though, I do kind of regret downloading that Miley Cyrus song. I don’t even like her it’s just so dang catchy! Don’t tell anyone. Thank you.
Hope your week was great and your weekend even better 🙂