Stress can manifest itself in a variety of different ways; it may cause worry, anxiety, changes in sleeping/eating patterns and even substance abuse. However, it’s important to understand that stress is nothing more than our body’s way of responding to challenges in our lives. 

While stress can have a huge impact on the way we live day to day, there are ways that we can ease the grip it sometimes has on our lives. As the ’80s band Frankie Goes to Hollywood famously sang, Relax! 

Relaxation seems to be a lost art in today’s fast-paced world, but it is vital in maintaining high levels of physical and cognitive functioning. Much like cars need to stop and refuel every so often, we need to stop and recharge too. 

There are many ways to do this, all of which involve us removing ourselves completely, both physically and mentally, from sources of stress. 

Relaxation techniques include: 

  • Allowing for flexibility and down time in your daily schedule 
  • Practicing meditation 
  • Doing moderate exercise 
  • Taking a walk 
  • Reading 
  • Listening to soothing music 
  • Taking the time to enjoy a meal or light snack 

While many of these strategies may seem obvious and commonplace, upon reflection, it’s likely that we don’t give ourselves enough time to actually implement them. Frankie says Relax! 

Did you know that Counselling Services and Learning Specialist Services offer free Student Success Workshops on study techniques and personal skills throughout the year? In fact, a free Relaxation Techniques workshop is being offered on Tuesday, October 8 from 1 to 1:50 p.m. in the Library building, room 119. Everyone is welcome.

What do you do to relax? Tell us in the comments section below.

Written by Jonathan Kwok, student, Communication Studies program

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