When life gets tough, it’s important to know how to collect yourself and just keep pushing on throughYour report card just came in the mail: uh oh. Your mom has been nagging you to clean your room all week. Can she be more annoying? Your best friend’s moving away at the end of the summer. Who will you sit with at lunch? With the stress piling up, you can’t even begin to imagine how things could get any worse. When it feels like your class is too long, your job is a drag and your life’s upside down, the worst thing you can do is hide in the shadows. Don’t worry. Just keep calm and carry on. If you feel a panic attack approaching, use these stress relieving tips to loosen up and you’ll be back and better than ever in no time!
Step 1: Inhale, exhaleSounds pretty simple, right? Breathing is a natural instinct, but sometimes it’s hard to catch your breath when you’re worked up. Stress can elevate your heart rate and make it impossible to focus. So close your eyes, take a deep breath and relax. Slowing down your pace will help you clear your head and get a fresh insight on the situation. When you feel like you might explode, just take a minute to unwind and let your body do what it does best: breathe.
Step 2: Hit the gymCramming for an exam in your pajamas with a box of cookies in your lap and crumbs on your face? We’ve all been there. When you feel bloated and lazy, and you just can’t get out of bed, focus. All you need is a little push. Grab your smart phone, throw on your cute Lulus and get moving! Exercise helps release endorphins which make you feel happy and rejuvenated. Hit the pavement or catch a spin class; sweating out your stress is a great way to get a fresh start.
Step 3: Talk it outWhether it’s your mom, best friend or teen hotline, discussing what’s bothering you is a surefire way to gain perspective. You might think that airing out your problems will make them real, and it may seem like once you say it out loud, you can’t take it back. Though those are legitimate fears, keeping your feelings bottled up will only make it worse. Your friends and family are there to listen without judgment. Sometimes all you need is an extra pair of ears and a friendly smile to help you see your path clearly.
Step 4: Pick up a hobbyDo you love to swim? Draw? Play the guitar? Don’t let your hobbies get lost in the shuffle. Life may seem pretty overwhelming at times, but take a moment to do what you enjoy. Set aside an hour each day, and dedicate it to “me” time. Focusing on an activity you love can allow your mind to wander and, when you finally come back to what’s been upsetting you, your wandering mind just may have stumbled upon a solution.
Step 5: Take controlIf you’re trapped in a situation where you feel powerless, it’s time to remove yourself immediately. Whether you’re hanging out with the wrong group of friends, or stuck in a relationship that just doesn’t feel right, these things can cause anxiety. Don’t let others walk all over you. Stand up for what feels right, and take control of your life. Show the world who’s boss and choose your own destiny.
Keep ‘em comingThe now infamous “Keep Calm and Carry On” poster was originally designed and copyrighted by the Ministry of Information in 1939. During WWII, the British Government intended to distribute the posters to lift the spirits of civilians in case of an invasion, but the British public never officially saw this one. More than 60 years later, an original copy of the poster was discovered in Barter Books, a used book store. Although the founder of the phrase is unknown to this day, the copyright ownership expires after 50 years, so the media and public are free to utilize the design. Known for its distinguished font and bold background, the poster has resurfaced into the public eye, and many spoofs have been made on this once serious phrase. Hundreds of people have twisted the wording around for advertising, design and entertainment purposes. Parodies such as “Keep Calm and Eat a Cupcake” and “Now Panic and Freak Out” have made their way around the twittersphere and stirred up lots of buzz. Various apparel, appliances, foods, notebooks and electronic cases have been produced and sold in the spirit of calm and can be purchased at www.keepcalmandcarryon.com.