In a previous article, we talked about why flipping out is seriously unattractive. Well, if that describes you, then fortunately we have some help. The opposite of flipping out is mellowing out. And, while you don’t want to be too mellow to the point of lacking ambition, if you have a tendency to let stress bring you down, then you may need to learn to relax. Below are four tips and ways to mellow out and relax.
Stop Predicting the Future
Think about everything that caused you stress last week. If you can remember it, did the worst case scenario you imagined in your head actually happen? I highly doubt it. Maybe you can’t even remember what stressed you out last week. I’m sure in the moment it seemed horrible. But, after you settled down, it wasn’t even a big deal.
When we stress we typically do something called “catastrophizing.” This is a mental distortion where we always think the worst is going to happen. We don’t know the future! But scientists have determined what we do know: eighty-five percent of what we worry about doesn’t even happen. So, stop worrying about literally nothing.
If you find yourself in a stressful spot and feel you’re ready to melt down, then the easiest way to stop it in its tracks is to simply breathe. Breathing slowly actually slows the body’s systems down and relaxes us instantly. When you melt down, your body actually begins to rev itself up. And, after a few minutes, voila, meltdown! Taking a few deep breaths puts the breaks on a meltdown. Just train yourself to take a few deep breaths when you start to get stressed.
Taking a few minutes (or more) a day just to meditate, relax, or pray has been shown to have numerous health benefits. It makes us mentally more focused and generally relaxed. Most teens and adults live incredibly busy lives with little down time. Meditation is good “me time” that all of us could use.
Take a few minutes a day just to listen to music, pray, or focus on something of value (like a beautiful nature scene). Enter into the meditative state by slowly breathing. Turn off your cell phone and computer. Have no distractions.
Let It Out
Oftentimes, people blow up because they hold in the stress and negative emotions until it boils over. Instead of letting problems grow and grow, release the stress quickly. Talk to a friend about it, get a punching bag, take it out on the football field, etc. Whatever you use to de-stress, relax, and mellow out, make sure your bad energy and worries come out. Don’t let them stay in!
I hope these four ways to mellow out and relax help you live a more relaxed life. Flipping out won’t make you more popular, that I promise. If you can be more relaxed, you’ll go much farther in life and that includes your social life.