To say 2020 has been a rollercoaster is probably an understatement. Most of us are feeling quite emotional and can go from feeling overwhelmed, to optimistic, to hopeless to content (and that can be in a single hour!). In the studio, our clients have said they are experiencing increased stress and anxiety which has often impacted other areas of their life, including health, wellbeing, sleep quality and skin.
In this blog, we want to provide a few tips and tricks to empower our clients to feel a little calmer and more in control. Remember, your feelings are always valid and it’s okay to be gentle with yourself in the current climate- and always! Self-care isn’t selfish; it’s a necessity.
It’s not surprising most of us are experiencing increased levels of stress and anxiety: this is is a completely natural response to uncertainty! However, there are a few ways to manage this in your day-to-day life, so try to find a tactic that helps you feel more at ease and in control.
If you’re working from home, we highly recommend sticking to your regular work hours. While it can be tempting to sleep in, you may then find yourself working late into the evening. Try to start at your usual time, and don’t forget to take lunch and other breaks too.
Finding you are checking the news every 5 minutes? We suggest limiting this to once in the morning and once in the evening. Staying informed is very important, but consuming dozens of (often sensationalized) articles will only make you feel even more anxious!
We are very lucky in Australia that we are able to go out to exercise, even when restrictions are in place. Make the most of this! Go for a walk, enjoy some fresh air and move your body (while maintaining social distancing, of course). There is a strong link between exercise and decreased stress so we recommend moving your body for 30-60 minutes every day.
Finally, if you’re wanting a little extra help, the Stress + Anxiety formula from JS Health is a great way to reduce feelings of unease. They contain Ashwagandha which is traditionally used in Ayurvedic medicines as a rejuvenating tonic. It is an adaptogen to help the body adapt to stress and relieves feelings of general malaise and debility. It also contains Passionflower, Vitamin B5 and Vitamin C to reduce and relieve the symptoms of mild anxiety, stress and nervous tension, relieve irritability, and calm and soothe the nerves.
Sleep is one of the main functions that is affected by increased stress. And inadequate sleep can leave to even more stress! If you’re struggling to fall asleep or maintain a restful slumber, there are a few things you can try.
Switch off electronics at least half an hour before retiring. You've heard it before but the blue light, noise and content on our screens stimulate the mind and make falling asleep more difficult. Try reading or listening to peaceful music instead.
You can also try enjoying a warm drink. This warm, cozy experience will help you to relax and tell your body and mind that you are starting to wind down for the night. We love sipping on the Digest brew from Mayde tea after dinner. This aromatic blend was created to support digestion and cleanse the palate. It contains a mix of therapeutic herbs that soothe the entire digestive system for gut healing. Plus the addition of peppermint may also help fight off infections such as the common cold and influenza.
Finally, make sure your space is calming. Use lamps instead of downlights where possible and relax with your evening brew/peaceful music/favourite book. You can also try a pre-sleep ritual to encourage feelings of relaxation, such as the Sleep Essential Oil Roller from Summer Salt. Apply to the wrists, temples and behind the ears to help lessen feelings of tension, calm the senses and support a restful night’s sleep.
When we become stressed, our bodies increase the amount of cortisol produced. This chemical response also causes an increase in inflammation and sensitivity as our body becomes more reactive. You may have noticed during times of stress, your skin can breakout or conditions such as eczema or rosacea may worsen.
We recommend following a simple skincare regime that focuses on nourishing the skin and barrier repair, as this will help to reduce inflammation. If you are experiencing breakouts, you can try adding a spot treatment such as the Pimple Punch from Skin Juice. It contains 7 potent actives that are clinically proven to treat congestion by targeting three key causes; bacteria, excessive sebum and inflammation. This powerful and natural formula helps to reduce sebum production, fight acne-causing bacteria, heal breakouts and soothe redness for clearer and stronger looking skin.
If you are more prone to redness and sensitivity, a weekly mask is both an enjoyable and rejuvenating experience! The Hyaluronic Acid Hydrojelly mask from Esthemax deeply moisturizes and improves skin elasticity. HA and Organic Aloe Vera powder maintain liquid balance whilst increasing cellular renewal by improving barrier integrity and reducing evaporation. We use these in the studio to leave our clients' skin bright, calm and hydrated!
Don’t forget looking after your health and wellbeing is more important than ever. Maintain healthy habits, eat well, exercise daily and look after yourself inside and out. Take time to do things that bring you joy, and don’t be afraid to reach out to others if you are feeling a little lost. Practicing self-care is essential for both the mind and body! You can’t pour from an empty cup so make sure you fill it up each and every day.