This post is sponsored by and in collaboration with Satva.
Satva is an incredible woman-owned sustainable yoga wear line with impressively commendable core values & practices using high-quality organic cotton & recycled polyester free of chemicals.
Not only do I LOVE their bold prints & yummy fabrics, but I’m incredibly inspired by Satva’s desire to have a positive impact within the fashion industry and within our world.
Satva has partnered with Suminter India Organics®, an environmental and socially conscious organic cotton production corporation in India to employ farmers who help grow the cotton used throughout their entire line. Together, Suminter and Satva launched Disha, an initiative that sponsors the education of young girls in villages where organic cotton is cultivated for Satva garments. Learn more here.
Satva Triangle Bra, Satva Anna Crop Top, Satva Anya Leggings
Founder & designer, Puja Barar stands by finding a harmonious balance in life & business and with TSTC being in business for it’s first complete year, we couldn’t agree more!
For as long as I can remember, I’ve known myself to be someone who stresses easily & I have struggled with anxiety that has increasingly flared up in the last 6-10 months to the point where my body was showing physical signs of stress.
Two months after getting engaged, launching TSTC and moving to NJ, the arches of my feet, knees, shoulders and hands began to swell, burn and itch to the point where they weren’t fully functioning! I was terrified as I had never experienced anything like this and had doctor’s appointment after doctor’s appointment and taken test after test. It wasn’t until an allergist asked when the swelling and hives began and made the connection that this all started happening after several huge life changes that I realized that stress could have played a role in what was happening to me both physically and emotionally.
Although I was initially resistant to accepting this as part of my diagnosis, I began taking steps toward reducing my stress levels and taking better care of myself– mind, body & soul! I’m so happy to report that since implementing these stress-reducing tools and techniques into my routine, my hives have completely subsided and I OVERALL feel so much more centered & clear-headed!
In today’s post, I’m super excited to share a few simple at home or close-to-home practices that can be applied to your everyday routine which have truly helped me manage my stress, anxiety and (even) depression!
Mid 2016 my stress levels were at an ALL-TIME HIGH, which was causing me to break out in hives all over my body. I turned to mediation classes to ease the stress, focus on being more mindful & more present as I found my stress being dictated by either feelings of the past or worries for the future.
Meditation classes were getting expensive and my favorite meditation studio was a bit far from home, so I decided to search in the iPhone App Store for an accessible, affordable option when I stumbled upon Simple Habit
and I have not looked back since!
I am so in love with the fact that Simple Habit offers so much variety helping keep mediation interesting and helping you ease into & out of whatever obstacles or emotions you may be facing!
Some of my favorite Simple Habit meditations for stress and anxiety relief are:
31-Day Fresh Start: Meditate, Reduce Stress, Feel at Peace
Centering, Positive Start, Anxiety, Panic and Fear,
Befriend the Breath, Calm Anxiety
*Meditation tip: When I feel low on energy I like to face my palms up to take in higher vibrations. When I feel high strung, I face my palms down/inward as a way to calm and relax myself.
The app is so convenient and reasonably priced for all the content they provide you with! Simple Habit makes meditating anytime, anywhere possible!
I’m TOTALLY hooked & recommend it ALL the time!
I’ve had a love affair with Yoga on and off since college, but I’ve gotta be honest–my workout game has been WHACK and practically non-existent since running TSTC full-time!
Before I became my own boss I was easily getting in 15,000-18,000 steps a day, which, at the time I didn’t notice, was keeping me pretty fit. So, what does my step in-take look like now that I work from home? 1,500-2,000 steps a day….IF I’m walking Pascal around the block a couple of times!
THAT IS A MASSIVE DIFFERENCE!
Sitting in a chair on the computer for most of the day has left me with a knot in my back that I’m convinced is permanent (even a professional masseuse couldn’t rid me of it! 😆 ), but my skin has been losing its elasticity (hello approaching 30!) and my aches and pains were making me curmudgeon-y and unable to stay focused.
The issue with working out for me is that I get bored very easily and if I pretty much know what to expect, I completely lose interest.
Reminding myself of how much I loved Yoga back in the day, considering how much I needed a gentle workout that would allow me to release some of this unwanted stress and acknowledging how it would pair perfectly with my meditation practice, I decided to revisit the app store to see if I could find a yoga app that would keep me coming back for more!
What I love about this app: their selection of cardio, strength and flow workouts keeping things fresh & interesting day to day, how quick yet effective the workouts are, making it convenient to fit into your daily routine and that you can do it in the comfort of your own home, at a park or in the convenience of your hotel room.
There are single 5-19 minute workouts, which include: Cleansing Detox Yoga, Fatburn Yoga, Yoga for travelers, 12 Yoga Exercises for Better Sex, Freestyle Yoga, Flow Yoga for Relaxation, Yoga for Creativity, Beach Body & more
And, there are ALSO 4-8 week coaching programs that are highly effective and designed to bring you maximum results like Life & Body 2017, Unwind & Relax, Yoga for Busy Moms, Body & Mind Balance, Happiness Flow, etc.
At the end of each workout, Asana Rebel allows you to log your workout and how you feel after completing each session, which I find so encouraging and effective on days where I don’t feel quite as motivated to get on the mat and working out. Reminding myself of how great I felt after a work out or of the progress I’ve made along my fitness journey (especially as I’m able to deepen into moves and increase my flexibility) helps get me right back on track!
Some of these workouts can be challenging, but what helps me push forward in completing these workouts is the fact that you get to take a break in between each training (each set of moves) and how light, loose, strong and AMAZING I feel afterward.
While meditation & yoga are the two main practices that keep my stress & anxiety at bay, here are a few more quick suggestions that have also helped me along the way!
3. Create a relaxing, calming environment
Light some aromatherapy candles or add a few drops of essential oils to your diffuser (my absolute favorite candle for unwinding is Goodnight Darling Co. Black Lavender Candle), dim the lights, listen to relaxing music (I frequently listen to Spotify’s Stress Relief playlist), take a bath, read a book or whatever it is that helps ease your mind.
4. Take breaks. Go out for a walk.
Surround yourself with nature, take in the fresh air & connect with yourself and your surroundings. Be present.
Having Pascal (my Pomeranian) has been such a blessing in my life. Because I take him for his walks in the afternoon and early evenings, this forces me to step away from my work and from the computer. I love going down by the water where there is so much greenery and the most gorgeous views of Manhattan. It’s truly my happy place.
If you don’t have a pup to remind you of when it’s time to push the restart button, set an alarm on your phone as a daily reminder to take a break for at least 15-30 minutes at a time, take a walk around the block, sit in your neighborhood park & soak in the sunshine for a few moments or schedule in a mid-day meditation!
5. Take Vitamin D
This teeny tiny supplement packs a punch & should be taken seriously!
During the winter, I fell into a depression for about 3 months and I knew something was off physically. It turns out I was very deficient in Vitamin D! After amping up my Vitamin D intake, I can honestly say I feel like an entirely new person mentally, physically & emotionally and on days when I’ve forgotten to take it, I DEFINITELY feel my spirit and energy level plummet. Taking these capsules of sunshine makes me feel like sunshine!
It amazes me how something so simple and easy to take can play such an important role when it comes to our mental health & well-being!
If you are vegetarian or vegan, I recommend Nature’s Plus Vegan Vitamin D3.
6. Get a good night’s rest
As someone who is familiar with having a mind that is tough to quiet before bed and has been known to toss and turn for a good portion of the night, I’ll be sharing more tips in a future post on what has helped me achieve a better night’s rest!
But for now, I can tell you that I NEED 7-8 hours of sleep a night to function at full capacity the next working day. Since making sure that I get in just the right amount of sleep on a more regular basis, I’ve noticed the positive effect it’s had on me.
As challenging as this can be, try to steer clear of any screens at least an hour before bed! So no T.V., computer or browsing through social media on your phone!
I’m still guilty of doing this every so often and I can tell you that my eyes feel heavier, dryer and I feel significantly more exhausted the next day, which sets the tone for the hours ahead and it’s no bueno!
7. Don’t quit when the going gets good
I have a feeling I’m not alone in this, but I’ve recently become aware that as soon as I start to feel better, whether it’s through regular exercise, taking supplements, eating a healthier more balanced diet, meditating, etc, I ease up on myself and fall out of my routine. And, what do ya know? Within a few weeks time, I’m back at square one feeling just as stressed and anxious as I did to begin with.
Yoga, meditation, overall wellness and self-care should be a continual lifestyle practice that I’m learning I should never stray away from. Staying on course and in a routine when I’m feeling great is just as important as the moments when I’m feeling low!
Have any useful tips on how you like to de-stress? Share them with us in the comments below!
Thank you so much to Satva for contributing to this post & to my peace of mind! 🙂
For more useful tips, check out guest contributor Pam Bauthues post