Sally at RevGals asks us to reflect on how we 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 ? My first thought was it depends on the day. Today, for example it seems to be all things. Overslept, stepped in something icky that came from a kitty's tummy, and I have to look nicer than usual (this takes time-trust me) 'cause I have to sing at a wedding right after work. I had to deliver the keyboard for said wedding to the church on the way TO work as it's too hot to leave it in the car, the gas gauge is going ping-ping I'm empty.... But really, it's not the stuff that stresses me at all , today or any day, but what I do with the the stuff, big or small. And since I'm still in a little bit of a pink post-retreat haze, all things are not as stressful on this particular morning as they might be otherwise. I'm kinda going with the flow. In general though, what causes me the most stress is me. When I can't/don't stay in the moment. Try to change reality. Worry about what other people think too much. Take it All Very Personally. Now that's where the stress all comes from!
2. Exercise or chocolate for stress busting ( or maybe something else) ? All things in moderation. Especially that exercise. I have always felt that one cannot be too moderate about that! I seem to be endorphin deprived and don't think I have ever experienced that high thing people talk about from exercise. Nope. Don't get it. Sorry. Yoga now, that is my destressor. Changed my life, it did! (If someone out there thinks of yoga as exercise, please don't tell me and ruin it for me). If someone did make me exercise under duress I'd do something dance-y or Pilates that would give my brain something to do also--otherwise it would cause more stress. Chocolate is good, too. Or ice cream. Or pasta. Or a good glass of wine. Or that getting back in the moment and breathing thing.
3.What is your favourite music to chill out to? Two extremes depending on mood, either something very quiet and meditative, chant or harp or piano, flute, something like that, or something BIG....choral with a big chorus, a great organ, a wonderful symphony. And sacred music always works, almost anything, especially old stuff.
4. Where do you go to chill? Lately my hot tub a lot. Or my "pastor's study" a little room I claimed and remodeled in my house that is my space to pray, think, meditate write, be.
5. Extrovert or introvert, do you relax at a party, or do you prefer a solitary walk? Oh please don't make me go to a party, pleeesepleeesepleeesepleeese don't make me go to a party, I'll be ever so good if you don't! OK, so it's not really that bad, not quite. But I am a serious "I" and find parties, coffee hour, etc. rather taxing and would find myself much more relaxed in the company of one or two others for good conversation, or would do really well alone on those walks.
Bonus- share your favourite stress busting tip! Mindfullness meditation: Be in the present on purpose. Sit with your breath. In and out. In and out. Stuff comes up, notice it, let it go, breathe again. Repeat as needed.