Sally writes: I am off to spend a few days at the beach chilling out after a hectic few weeks and before I head off for Summer School...So with that in mind this weeks questions are looking at how you deal with the stress monster!!!???
1. First, and before we start busting stress, what causes you the most stress, is it big things or the small stuff ? right now it's definitely the big stuff - graduation from seminary, family health issues, friends moving away, counseling for myself and other things I'm not willing to mention here... admittedly, when things pile up though, even the little things can become bigger than they need to be
2. Exercise or chocolate for stress busting ( or maybe something else) ? I wish it was exercise, but it's usually chocolate, particularly in the brownie or ice cream form... sadly this is one of the reasons that I am so overweight which only adds to the stress in the form of physical problems (I have degenerative disc disease in my lower back and my weight exacerbates the condition making it painful to sit/stand/walk for very long). One of the reasons I'm currently in counseling is to try to get to the heart of my emotional eating. One day I hope to bust my stress by going for a jog, or at least a long walk!
3.What is your favourite music to chill out to? Enya is always a favorite for relaxing, but it could be lots of differen things depending on my mood and the particular song. I've made several cd's of "chill out" music that include things by Sarah McLachlan, Indigo Girls, KT Tunstall, Depeche Mode (one of my high school faves), Alanis Morisette, etc. I also enjoy just turning on the classical music station on the radio to just listen without focusing on words.
4. Where do you go to chill? A lot of different places - sometimes it's just vegging in front of the tv (which isn't so much relaxing as it's diverting), others it's hiking in the woods, walking around the duck pond and beautiful grounds at a local park or people watching somewhere like a mall. I think what works better is determined by the cause of the stress in the first place.
5. Extrovert or introvert, do you relax at a party, or do you prefer a solitary walk? I'm definitely more of an extrovert but still have those times when I just need to be alone. I generally find parties energizing rather than relaxing, but like to take time alone to journal, listen to music, or meditate to relax and rejuvenate myself.
Bonus- share your favourite stress busting tip! I don't know if it's really a tip, but in general I find that perspective is everything - so when you're stressed out about something it helps to talk about it with someone you trust and get their perspective on it. Sometimes it's not as big a deal as it first seemed after sharing it with someone else, or perhaps they can offer some advice that makes it easier to deal with. Community and caring for each other always helps!