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Tuesday, 24 April 2018

How to Focus Your Mind During Stressful Situations


Nothing is worse than trying to calm a racing mind during periods of high stress. The physical aspects of stress are hard enough to deal with, and as if you didn’t have enough to contend with already, a serious lack of focus can set you back even more. Trying to get through your day, get your work done, and take care of responsibilities can be a challenge when you can’t get your mind to settle into a routine.

Luckily, there are approaches and practices you can apply to help take back control of a situation to allow your mind to settle, and in doing so address many of the physical aspects of a stress response. Never be afraid to seek outside help from a healthcare provider, counselor, or psychologist if your stress becomes chronic; but all of these practices can be used to help aide in some of your worst moments.

Identify the Stressor

Sometimes simply identifying and acknowledging the source of stress is enough to reset your reaction to it. This can be difficult in the moment, especially if another person is involved or an event is ongoing, but at your first opportunity find a quiet spot, tell yourself what triggered your response and recognize why. This can also help you be prepared for when a similar situation occurs again.

Diffuse Essential Oils

Many natural essential oils have calming and focusing properties. Diffuse oils in a room during days that you know are bound to be stressful, or use them to destress after a stress reaction occurs. You can also dilute them with a little coconut oil and rub on your temples and wrists for a more immediate reaction. Some favorites include Digize oil blends, Lavender, Rosemary, Peppermint, Citrus Blends, and Vetiver.

Meditate

Meditation is another practice many people use to help remove themselves from a high stress situation mentally in order to reset and refocus. It works best for those in regular practice and is a great way to help with daily stressors and mental clarity as well. All you need is 5 minutes in a quiet place where you can sit quietly and clear your mind. You can allow yourself to recognize the stress and emotion, but instead of thinking about it, let it go.


Slowing your breathing helps in lowering your blood pressure, lower body temperatures, and improves blood flow to vital organs. When you allow this to become a daily practice you can more quickly take advantage of it and reap longer lasting benefits.

Write!

Writing is another way to recognize and acknowledge a stressor, and in doing so provide you the ability to explore your reactions. Writing is highly therapeutic and many studies support the practice of writing to help ease stress and trauma. Ownership of physical and mental issues that inhibit your ability to focus often provide a release through the written word. 

If writing isn’t your forte, or you need something faster, try talking to a trusted friend or family member that can allow you to talk without trying to solve your problem. The emotional release and allowing your words to illustrate the situation may also provide you a way to reflect and solve the issues keeping you from moving forward.

Natural Supplements

You may also want to take advantage of natural supplements that work with your natural endocannabinoid receptors to help support the release of calming hormones. CBD oil is one such supplement gaining a lot of recognition for its ability to work with a calming for stress and anxiety and supporting concentration. 

Also gaining acknowledgement is the plant Mitragyna Speciosa. Known as Kratom, it can aid in reducing stress and providing a boost to energy and focus.

Avoid Caffeine and Other Stimulants

Caffeine and other such stimulants aren’t going to last, and will increase your heart rate- supporting feelings of stress and anxiety rather than easing them. If you need a hot drink or something to boost energy try a more natural approach. Non-caffeinated herbal teas such as peppermint, lemon, cinnamon, and chamomile can be helpful.


Get Sleep!

Get some sleep! Our reactions to things we cannot control can often be calmed when we have enough sleep. Adults should get between 7 and 9 hours a night to fully recharge and heal. Many studies also suggests a 20 minute nap can very much help with overall relaxation and energy.

Get Exercise!

We aren’t talking going for a marathon run here or weight lifting circuit training (although if you want to, go for it). A brief jog, brisk walk, or even practicing yoga can improve blood flow, get your mind focused on a different task, and help stress relief to occur. It also releases feel good endorphins to help you refocus and energize. 

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