When we took our trip to Washington D.C. with our two little boys – we had so much fun touring the nation’s capitol. But the trip wasn’t without several moments of stress, trying to get places on time, using public transportation, in a crowded city!
At the National Air & Space Museum, I saw the cutest little astronaut stress “ball” men, and I just had to have one. Sort of as a joke. But seriously…. stress = not good for us or our families. Cute astronaut stress man = smiles for everyone, which is very good!
Moms, we all have stress! It can be BIG stress like moving your family, a pregnancy, or going back to work after baby. Or maybe it’s small daily stressors like getting kids into the car on time, the mountain of laundry, or kids who won’t eat dinner.
I’ve partnered with United Healthcare and the We Dare You to Share challenge again this month to give you some simply stress busters for moms.
There’s a new chance to enter the monthly giveaway for a $400 prepaid gift card!! Just go here to take a quiz, watch a short video, or share a laughable moment with a hashtag – that’s three chances to win! Go do them all – I want to hear one of MY readers wins this month!!
My favorite option is watching a three minute video that shares some thoughts about stress and three simple stress busters. But I’ve got more ideas for you too!
Simple Stress Busters for Moms
1. Squeeze an Astronaut. Okay you may not have a cute astronaut stress man like me, but find a squishy ball and hang on to it for a bit. Wondering if stress balls really work? They do! The repeated squeezing can reduce tension and increase blood circulation, allowing muscles to relax.
2. Use Essential Oils. You knew I was going to say that, right? I recommend any of the following (or blend a few): Lavender, Bergamot, Cedarwood, Camomile, Frankincense, Jasmine, Geranium, Orange Blossom, Orange, Rose, Sandalwood, Ylang Ylang. Diffuse the oils or apply to the feet, back of neck, wrists, and/or back.
3. Eat Chocolate! Oh thank goodness for this. Just be sure it’s a healthful, organic dark chocolate, and only 40 grams daily. Studies show chocolate can reduce cortisol levels. What’s easier than eating chocolate?
4. Stand up straight. Poor posture creates muscle tension, impedes breathing, and can increase stress. Do this: stand up very straight against a wall and lean into it with your whole body. This will pull your shoulders back. Now straighten yourself up to your full height like you’re trying to be taller than someone. This elongates and realigns your spine. Without tensing yourself, hold this posture and carefully step away from the wall. Try to maintain this posture for as long as you can. If you feel yourself slumping again, just repeat.
5. Blow up a balloon. Your kids will love you for this, and the deep and slower breathing required will lower your heart rate, reducing stress levels.
6. Hum a tune. Music can definitely affect and lift our moods, and humming is a relaxing exercise. Not only that, but the tune you’re humming will momentarily block and break the cycle of stressful thoughts you might be having. Plus, humming is just fun.
7. Eat whole foods. What’s the first thing many of us do when stressed? Grab something sweet, right? It is SO important when facing stress to focus on healthy eating. Try having more protein like nuts or hard-boiled eggs. If you must have sweet, eat an apple or orange because at least it’s got the fiber and is a natural snack. I won’t belabor it, I am sure you know what’s on the “bad list” by now. (dark chocolate in moderation is okay! See number three!).
8. Pray and/or meditate. I put this last not because it’s least, but because I want to end with the MOST important. Simple stress busters are great, but there are always things outside our control. I believe we need to put these out-of-control moments, thoughts, and stressors into the hands of God. Tell God all about what’s bothering you, leave it in His hands. Meditate on Scriptures that bless and uplift your thoughts, and go back to number six and hum a song of praise!
I hope you’ve enjoyed these lighthearted and simple stress busters for moms. As a fellow mom, my heart is with you, because I know all we go through and do each day! We’re all in this together and I hope I’ve given you some ideas to bring a little relief into your mothering days!
Don’t forget to enter the We Dare You to Share contest for your chance to win a $400 prepaid gift card! That’ll reduce some stress right!? Plus you’ll get some more tips on reducing stress when you take the challenges!
How much is stress affecting your life as a mom? What are your simple stress busters?
This post is sponsored by United Healthcare. All opinions are my own.