5 Fast Ways to Calm Yourself Mindfully When You Get Stressed
We all have moments of needing to find our way back to an inner place of calmness and ease. Life can quickly overwhelm us in today's busy world, so it's important to develop a simple routine to calm yourself down. I've learned to utilize certain methods in my life whenever I've needed to find my way back to a state of calmness, especially in the face of stress and uncertainty.
Based on my background and years of study, I found these five practices, in particular, are the quickest and most effective tools to calm myself down in an instant.
Like I share in my course at RoundGlass, your nervous system directly reflects your mental state. In a 2018 research study conducted at the University of California, Los Angeles, scientists confirmed that the automatic nervous system could deregulate when your physical and mental states are altered or disrupted.
The good news is by self-soothing and self-regulating your nervous system; you simultaneously influence your mental state.
If you practice my "5 Ways To Calm Yourself Fast," I am confident that you will feel resilient and more in control when exhaustion or stress starts to take over. Don't be fooled by the simplicity of these quick, accessible, and in-the-moment practices; they function this way for a reason.
How to Calm Yourself Fast
Breathe, now. That's right, take a long, deep breath followed by an extended exhale. Try and count out the exhale to the numbers four, five, or six.
Go into silence. We are used to being on the go and working 24/7. I want you to begin normalizing rest by taking two minutes to exist in total silence and stillness. Then, watch the clarity and calmness unfold.
Find your rhythm. Dr. Bruce Perry has a well-known practice for soothing and calming the nervous system known as "rhythm and rocking." I love this practice, use it myself, and know you will too.
To find your rhythm in the moment and on the quick, seek repetition in music, chores, or even chopping up vegetables to make a salad or a soup.
You can play your favorite song repeatedly, practice the air drums, or tap your fingers on a table.
Maybe sweep the floor or fold the laundry.
Make sure to let yourself relax into the repetition, rocking, and experience of finding your rhythm.
Move your body. You don't need to change into workout clothes to practice movement in the moment. One of my favorite quick mindful movement practices is gently twisting your spine to the left and right or in a circle. A nice brisk walk is always another great way to calm down quickly.
Experience nature. As mentioned in my course, spending time in nature is always a "mini-win." Sit outside in the sun for five minutes, take a stroll in a nearby park or garden, and if you're stuck indoors, look out the window at the bright blue sky.
Remember that finding your way back to calmness and ease is often simpler than we think it might be. Now that you've learned my five ways to calm down fast, you can put them into practice when you find yourself facing a stressful situation.
Continue to engage in these five techniques anytime you want, especially if you need to quickly calm down as you go about your day.
To learn how to develop these tools as your practice grows, try this premium RoundGlass course, Build Mental Fitness by meditation teacher Cara Bradley.