12 Brilliant Methods To Reduce Stress While Stuck At Home

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I know what you’re thinking. Being stuck at home can be stressful in itself. I should know, I’ve had my fair share of stressful situations since April this year. You may be wondering whether there are really methods to reduce stress while stuck in a stressful situation?

Whether you work from home, are recovering from an illness or surgery, or any other reason, if you are stuck at home you may find yourself feeling stressed and depressed.

If you’re struggling with these feelings, you’ll be pleased to discover that there are many things you can do to help reduce your stress, uplift your mood, and increase your productivity on important tasks.

Grab your FREE checklist (with three bonus stress-relieving tips) that you can refer to whenever you feel like stressful feelings are getting the best of you. Just run down this list and try the activities until you start to feel better.

Disclaimer: This information is intended for educational and reference purposes only. Use of this information is entirely at your own risk. Should you have any health concerns, please consult your Doctor or another relevant professional. If you are in need of professional help I use and recommend Online-Therapy.com (affiliate link). They will match you with a therapist that you can message or live chat for an affordable monthly price. 

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Methods to reduce stress while stuck at home:

Get some exercise

Physical activities produce endorphins, which is a natural painkiller. Exercise also reduces fatigue, improves alertness and concentration, and enhances overall cognitive function. It also enhances your sleep quality.

I’ve been enjoying exercise more lately, thanks to a number of exercise classes I found online. Kukuwa Fitness is the first exercise I’ve been able to do in a long while that hasn’t left my knees begging for pain medication afterwards, followed by Afrifitness, another African dance-based workout. I also recently started yoga and enjoy doing yoga exercises. Who knew yoga could help with weight loss? Seasoned yogis most probably knew this, thousands of years ago, but I’m kinda late to the game!

If you enjoy yoga, I recommend this Yoga Burn 12-week challenge. Yoga Burn promises to make women feel lighter, healthier and happier by helping them burn calories, manage their weight and get into great shape at the same time. Yoga is beneficial for cardiovascular health, flexibility and weight loss.

Importantly, evidence shows that yoga increases body awareness, relieves stress, reduces muscle tension, strain, and inflammation, sharpens attention and concentration, and calms and centres the nervous system.

I don’t know whether my pain-free knees after working out are as a result of now working out bare feet, or whether the Highest Power sent some healing my way (I believe it’s the latter), but I’m loving it! Don’t get it twisted though, these workouts are not easy, and you will sweat!

Light a scented candle

Scented candle for stress

Certain scents can help reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Lavender, sandalwood, ylang-ylang, and geranium have all been shown to offer these benefits.

Scented candles have been used for centuries to promote healing. They have been used for meditation and relaxation and scented candles have been proven to transform the mood.

The smell of the scented candle stimulates the part of the brain that affects mood and memory. This means that depending on the scent things such as boosting energy relieving stress or enhancing mental clarity can be achieved.

Even psychotherapists have adopted the use of scented candles to enhance the services provided to their clients.

Scents such as lavender, orange, lemon, apple, sandalwood, and vanilla work to boost mood and reduce stress. Apple especially works to control anxiety.

Reduce your caffeine intake

Caffeine is a stimulant found in coffee, tea, and energy drinks. It can also cause anxiety in high doses. If you experience symptoms such as jitteriness or anxiety, consider cutting back on your intake.

Taking high levels of caffeine can cause loss of sleep and stimulate the fight or flight response, and these can increase anxiety. Caffeine in itself doesn’t cause anxiety but it can worsen symptoms.

I’m sure you’ve heard the term, everything in moderation. A little caffeine won’t hurt. How much is a little? That’s a million-dollar question. Please seek advice from your health professional, to ascertain how much is best for you.

Anyone who knows me knows that I love my tea, caffeine and all! I used to have four cups of tea every day but I have significantly cut it down to one cup. Sometimes I don’t have any tea at all. Now that’s progress!

Chew some gum

Chewing gum when you’re stressed has been found to help reduce anxiety. Studies show that chewing gum reduces stress, depression, and anxiety. At the very least chewing gum helps with relaxation.

When you chew gum, you will experience greater blood flow to your brain. Doing this can cause brain waves to occur that are similar to those experienced by relaxed people.

*Please don’t buy a packet of gum in place of going to see your doctor! Please and thank you!

Spend more time with family and friends

Your family and friends can offer you support in times of need, so it’s important that you keep them close to you. Research has found that spending time with friends can help release oxytocin, which helps to relieve stress.

Thanks to technology you can video-call your friends and family and it can be almost as if you are all in the same room. Many people have friends and family that live abroad or far away from them, and technology can help keep them closer. Talking to people who care about you can help improve your mental health.

Laugh

Spending some time out of your day to laugh can go a long way to relieving stress. It helps to relieve tension by relaxing your muscles and can also strengthen your immune system and uplift your mood.

Laughing can boost your immune system by releasing antibodies which fight infection, and neuropeptides that help fight stress. It can reduce stress and have a positive effect on both your physical and mental health.

The act of laughing causes you to take in more oxygen and oxygen is vital for the cells and organs in the body. When you laugh endorphins are released, which reduce the negative effects of stress and leads to lower blood pressure.

Laughing will improve your mood. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen or known of anyone who can laugh and be angry at the same time. Have you?

Avoid procrastination

If you put off doing important tasks, you could find yourself getting stressed and having to scramble to complete those tasks before the deadline. Instead of trying to multitask, make a list of your tasks and do them in order of importance. You’ll reduce stress and enjoy greater productivity.

Procrastination has negative impacts because it leads to poor performance, stress, anxiety, worry, guilt, and potentially physical health problems.

Procrastination is a lose-lose situation. You may find temporary relief from stress, but the long term costs far outweigh any short term comfort.

Dr. Neil Fiore ph.D in his book The Now Habit, states that the way you talk to yourself will help you to change your procrastination habits. This is not because a change in language alone will end all procrastination, but because how you talk to yourself represents the attitudes and beliefs that determine how you feel and act.

This is why affirmations are so powerful. You can choose to reinforce positive feelings of power and overcoming.

Rather than looking at your task as a monolith, break it down into small tasks. Rather than telling yourself that you have to, or should do certain tasks, you tell yourself that you choose to.

For example:

  • Replace “I have to do the washing up” with “I choose to do the washing up.”
  • Replace “Redecorating my house is such a huge task” with “I can paint one small area at a time.”

Practice mindfulness

Whether you take a yoga class or try some self-meditation, if you practice mindfulness and focus on the present rather than the past or future, you’ll see a reduction in anxiety.

Arguably the most famous person to walk on earth said

“Do not worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Jesus Christ

Worry is a natural reaction to life’s happenings such as relationship, family, work and financial issues. The automatic response may be to frantically do things to rectify things, however, mindfulness requires a state of being.

Mindfulness allows you to become more aware of your thoughts. It allows you to focus on the present so that rather than just seeing the negative consequences of feeling stressed, it would enable you to seek positive solutions to the stressor. 

“Search your heart and see. The way to do is to be.” Lao Tzu

Listen to relaxing music

Certain types of music can lower your blood pressure and heart rate and may help to reduce stress hormones too. Slow-paced instrumental music works well, but classical, Celtic, Native American, and Indian music can also be soothing.

Researchers at Stanford University found that rhythmic music may have some positive neurological effects, on conditions such as depression. Slow beats were found to encourage the slow brainwaves that are associated with hypnotic or meditative states.

A search for “meditation music” on YouTube results in an array of relaxing music. Some of them are that soothing that they can put you to sleep. Some may just relax your brain and body enough for you to regain some energy to plod along.

Just because something is labelled as meditative doesn’t mean it will remove your stress. It’s really up to you what kind of music would relax you and relieve your stress.

Practice deep breathing

The aim of deep breathing is to slow your breathing and make it deeper. This process will bring more oxygen to your body’s cells, relax your muscles, slow your heart rate, and leave you feeling more peaceful and relaxed.

Deep breathing is the more natural way for us to breathe. As we inhale, our lungs fill with air and our lower bellies rise. This encourages gas exchange, which is the transfer of oxygen from our lungs into our bloodstream, and the elimination of carbon dioxide from our bloodstream into our lungs.

Not breathing deeply – shallow breathing –  leaves more carbon dioxide in the body which can cause symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, high blood pressure, dizziness, and the inability to concentrate or think clearly.

A simple yet effective method of breathing is to sit in a quiet place and breathe in through your nose for four seconds, holding for seven seconds, and breathing out through your mouth for eight seconds. Repeat this up to four times. 

Create a schedule

Creating a daily schedule or to-do list is a great method of reducing stress. Let’s face it, LaRona and lockdown mean that there’s often no difference between work life and family life for a lot of those of us working from home. With a schedule, you are less likely to procrastinate, live and work in a disorganised environment, or haphazardly complete assignments.

Schedules do not always have to be set in stone. They can be adjusted to make room for additional tasks or tasks that take a longer or shorter amount of time to accomplish than what was originally planned.

You can start with a short schedule of tasks without cramming many things to do in one day. A short list of the three most important things to accomplish each day is sufficient to relieve stress and change your life for the better.

Spend time with your pet

Or get one if you don’t have one…

I don’t have a pet, but I did when I was younger. Actually, we had quite a number of dogs and a couple of cats, who had ample room to roam freely in our gated compound in Nigeria. Space permitting, one day I will buy a dog! My girls would love a Cavapoo breed, and I’m sold on the idea! I digress.

Cavapoo dog to relieve stress
Cavapoo

Stroking your pet can build trust and reduce stress by improving mood and health. Pets are especially beneficial for keeping you active. While you may not have the motivation to get up and exercise, having a dog could encourage you to get some exercise and fresh air when you walk the dog.

One study found that University students, who are normally reported to have high levels of stress, had lower salivary cortisol levels after 10 minutes of petting cats and dogs. Cortisol is a hormone that is released in response to stress.

Compared to those who merely observed, watched still images of the animals, and waited without external stimuli, these results suggest petting animals may provide effective stress relief.

When you interact with a pet, your body releases oxytocin, a chemical that uplifts your mood. Plus, having a pet will give you a purpose, and provide you with companionship – which all can reduce stress.

Conclusion

While stress can easily occur at home, there are plenty of methods to reduce stress you could try out. These are just a few. Make a habit of practising these whenever you feel stressed, and soon you’ll find that you can subdue it just as easily as it arises.

What tips do you have that have helped you relieve stress whilst you’ve been at home?

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Did you find this post helpful? If so, please share with a friend, and stay uplifted.

Ngozi Signature Elevated Mum

P.S. Check out my free e-book below to help you overcome worry and anxiety and live a more joyful and peaceful life.

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56 thoughts on “12 Brilliant Methods To Reduce Stress While Stuck At Home”

  1. I love your tips on stress relief.
    We live in a chaotic world right now, and it is important to be mindful of our mental health. This year has been surreal! For me, survival and being present in the moment has been my motto.
    I keep reminding myself to be grateful for the little things in life I have right now such as family, hot water bath, ability to laugh and watch a favourite movie. Thanks for sharing – Angy – socialworkhaven.com

  2. Wow! Enjoyed reading your tips about stress relief. In spite of Yoga, my mindfulness practices, my loving animals, my family, scented candles and music, and laughter, it is undeniable that this year has been surreal. I am grateful for the leisure, good health, and the company of those who care for me. Somedays I just have to sit with it like a teabag steeping in hot water.

  3. Excellent tips, love them all. When I want to relax and depressure I go for long walks or hikes if possible. I also read and draw, drawing helps the most because it is my hobby. Thanks for the checklist, looks great!

  4. These are great tips! If you can, getting outside every day for some fresh air has been huge for my own mental health – whether it’s taking a walk or just sitting on the porch.

  5. Such a great list! Mindfulness and meditation have been a real lifesaver during quarantine for me so it was nice to see it included in your guide! Thank you for sharing 😀

    1. Yayyy!😀 You’re welcome. Meditation has been a lifesaver. I love it because it doesn’t have to be complicated and is so effective.

  6. I’m definitely guilty of getting too much caffeine… and I ALWAYS feel better when I don’t drink too much. Thanks for the reminder!

  7. Awesome list of activities to reduce stress. I love your suggestions about using candles and listening to music to unwind. Laughter and deep breathing work like magic for me to get the feel good vibes going.

    1. I find it fascinating that we have the tools within us to improve ourselves, and even if we choose to try external sources, they don’t have to be expensive or complicated.

  8. I find many of the points you made and tips you gave very helpful. These are crucial, especially with the current global situation.

  9. In light of what’s going on in the world, learning how to reduce stress is needed more so than ever before. Thanks for sharing these amazing tips. I for one need to exercise more.

  10. Out of all those great suggestions, creating a schedule is the one that has worked best for me especially with two kids at home. Thanks for sharing!

    1. My schedule is probably the one I need the most work on at the moment. I can see the difference when I plan my schedule more. I’m glad you find these tips useful.

  11. Awesome tips! I love cuddling with my pups when I am stressed out, they always seem to know when I need some extra love the most!

  12. These are great and practical tips. To be honest, I am feeling the stress of staying at home since January. Love the idea of lighting a scented and listening to relaxing music. And yes, spending time with my dogs has definitely helped me cope.

    1. These times can be stressful. especially if you’re used to going out freely, and doing other activities that we can’t do so much right now.

    1. It’s easy to stop working out sometimes. I hope I can keep up with my new found exercise routine. It’s so beneficial for the body and mind.

  13. Yes these are good going for walks has helped me reduce stress from being stuck at home. Especially with. Toddler and new baby I just need to step outside and clear my mind sometimes.

    1. That’s great! I think these times require us to practise ways of achieving calm. Even though the world is going haywire, we can have peace within.

    1. Thank you. I used to be haphazard with my exercise, but I must admit, whenever I exercise consistently I feel so much better and have more energy.

  14. Yes to these! My husband and I have actually completely given up coffee, and I’ve moved my daily run from the evening to the morning. It’s really changed my stress level through this!

  15. Most relevant for the present times when adults, kids, the elderly are all dealing with their own demons stuck at home. These strategies are beautiful. A great reminder of how to prioritize our time. Well researched

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words. I notice a difference when I don’t follow these myself. The great thing is that we can always pick ourselves up and continue.

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