There are many times in life when we feel overwhelmed and stressed out. Usually they are at the same moments where wonderful things are happening in our lives. Times of transition, times of change, or while we are working on our next big project. Wedding planning, awaiting the arrival of a new baby, looking for a new home and receiving a promotion at work are all wonderful opportunities for us, but more often than not, I hear brides, mom’s to be, and home hunters complain about how stressed they are and how there is so much to do. While those are big undertakings, there are so many special moments that are overlooked when we allow stress and worry to cloud our hearts and minds.
So today, I want to share 4 ways you can stop stressing and live a happier life!
1. Have Patience
Expectancy, by definition, is hoping that something wonderful will happen. And while having that hope in expectancy is good, I truly believe that we should not neglect our present. More often than not, I hear the phrase “I can’t wait…!” Even though its usually about something exciting, I’ve been trying extra hard lately not to say it because I am trying to re-learn the discipline of patience. Patience is Expectancy’s annoying little sister that no one wants to think about because she’s not as pretty. Patience, by definition, is the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble or suffering without getting upset. Ouch! I know that looking forward to something is so easy, but being content where we are is very important as well and can be difficult at times. I challenged myself to stop saying “I can’t wait…” because I feel like I’m telling myself that waiting isn’t an option, that I’m not choosing patience when I say it. Rather, I have been correcting myself with “I’m looking forward…” or “I’m excited for…” because in reality, I can wait and I should be patient. That way, I feel as though I am telling myself that where I am is good, and I can have a healthy expectancy for what’s ahead. This is also helpful because having patience helps you to get through whatever is stressing you out and you can enjoy daily life more. Patience puts things into perspective and can help you take one step at a time.
2. Change Your Environment
So many times, we get stuck in the same routine of waking up, going to work, coming home, having dinner, going to activities or bing watching Netflix and then we go to bed wondering where the time went! That can not only cause your days to be mundane, but also add unnecessary stress to your life. So change things up! Challenge yourself to do something you’ve never done before. Get out of your comfort zone and try something new. It doesn’t have to be something crazy or anything like that but when you open yourself up to new opportunities, it stretches you and opens you up to the possibility that something wonderful could happen. It can also be a big stress reliever so change things up! Since the weather has been so nice lately, my husband and I have been going for an evening walk around the pond at the park across from our home. It has been so nice to be outside in the fresh air and have quality time together and the opportunity to talk about our day! Plus walking is a great stress reliever and good for your body and soul!
3. Look For Beauty In The Small Things
Often times, when we are in a rut or stressed out, we tend to go through life with blinders on and are only able to take in what is already filling our schedules. These blinders cause us to miss out on the little things that make life beautiful. With the arrival of Spring, there is so much life happening and things changing with the seasons. One evening, on our walk, we came across a little group of tiny ducklings! They were so cute and fuzzy and I was sad I didn’t have my camera with me to document the start of their lives! I was determined to go back the next day and find them! However, if I had decided to stay home and sit on the couch that day, I wouldn’t have seen them and would have missed out on the joy of new life! Even still, I was able to appreciate how cute and tiny they were and how there is so much more going on in the world besides what I am dealing with. Times like this can really help put things into perspective. Simply taking the time to slow down and appreciate the world around you is easier said that done, but when you do, you’ll realize how much happier it makes you! There is beauty all around us, we just need to open our eyes to see it!
4. Take A Break For Yourself
Taking time off for myself is something I really struggle with. When I’m not at my job, I constantly feel like I should be working on my business or at my home and what tends to happen is I get burnt out. Burn-out is not good for us as it stifles creativity and causes us to not be at our best for the things that are important to us. Making time to relax and recuperate is very important and can give us more energy for the things we are excited about! I have been guilty of using my “me” time on Instagram and Pinterest and before I know it, I’ve wasted time that I could have been actually doing the projects Ive pinned or spending quality time with my husband. Plus seeing what everyone else is doing can sometimes make us feel like we are missing out, when in reality, we have our own unique lives to live and should be rightly doing so! This past week, Eli and I decided to take a break from our phones and technology and have a “Blackout Night.” Of course we still used electricity for lighting and making dinner, but we made it a point to not look at our phones or watch TV. I first heard of this idea from one of my favorite YouTubers, Loepsie (you can check out her channel here) on her blog when she talked about wanting to do a technology detox. I felt so silly that I was nervous to not “check in” with the world for one evening, but it was actually really nice! Eli and I had a wonderful evening of talking, taking a walk, making dinner together, working on projects and playing games without the distractions of our phones, computers or Netflix. The quality of our time together really was enhanced when we decided to disconnect from the outside world and only connect with each other. It seems silly to admit how dependent we are on our phones these days, but when we make it a point to live our own lives and not focus on everyone else’s Instagram lives, ultimately we will be much happier!
My hope is that this will inspire you to try something new or change your perspective on things. When we learn to let go of the things we cannot control and take ownership of our situations, thats when we will live life to its fullest. I hope you have a beautiful day and that you choose happiness!!
PS What makes you happy? And what do you do to relieve stress in your life? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
Here are some photos of one of our recent walks in the park. 🙂