Tag Archives: stress relief

Really Useful Websites (March 2008)

This month’s tidbits (yes, I think some might just be a bit odd – but sometimes that is an amusing thing):

  1. Listography: Yes, I’m one of those people – I make lists. I make lists of lists. Naturally, I think this is a wonderful site. You can make wish lists, top ten lists, autobiographical lists, to do lists, and goal lists, among others. There is even a topic generator!
  2. For those who like jigsaws, there is JigZone. They have puzzle of the day, puzzles across the top of the page, and you can sort through categories as well. You can also upload your own pictures. On top of that, you can choose unusual cuts for the puzzle pieces, like USA, lizards, and bulbs!
  3. On a completely different, and more serious note, I found a wonderful site called CaringBridge. They provide free websites to anyone going through a health crisis; it makes it tremendously easy to update family and friends about changes, procedures, progress made, etc. Unfortunately, I’ve discovered the usefulness of this site through a cousin’s cancer crisis, but I can say that I have used this site and I find it wonderful. It makes it so much easier on the family – they post the update on the site and people who have signed up for updates get an email notifying them of the change.
  4. From Texas Women’s University, I found the following page: 52 Proven Stress Reducers. I found this page to be full of helpful suggestions and I highly recommend it if you are having stress issues.
  5. Grocery Lists – this is an amusing site; this guy collects lost grocery lists. He started posting the ones he found and it has led to an online “thing” – apparently people submit the lost lists that they find. It has some interesting things on it: the top 10 found lists, lists of gift ideas, selections from the book, etc. It is quirky, but worth a look at.
  6. Google Page Creator – this is a great, easy way to create a simple web page. I’ve got several now. I’ll grant you that I don’t think you can get terribly complicated with this, and for professionals, this isn’t what you want, more than likely. I think this is perfect for someone who wants to play around, to create a simple page just to see what it is like.
  7. Every Day Giving – do I need to say more?
  8. Off The Mark Cartoons – I’ve found this artist’s work amusing, and I have purchased items from him via CafePress. He, or the people working for him, have been very responsive. Really, there should be a cartoon there for any interest.
  9. The Arcata Eye Police Log – really amusing writing style for a not-normally-interesting thing. Really worth a look – there are frequent chuckles.
  10. A bowling score calculator – this can come in handy, particularly if you are taking a “physical education” class in college…
  11. The Family Car Web Magazine: I have found some good information here. I do have to say that I am not a mechanic, nor do I play one on TV, so … while take that under advisement. Still, I found this site very helpful.
  12. The Vermont Country Store – ok, I love this catalog and the site. I have not actually ordered from them but they have some GREAT stuff and a good deal of items that are “old fashioned” – i.e., they might appeal to older folks as nostalgic gifts! Then there is the humor aspect of the site. Just so much fun to browse. And I, as I said, love their catalog as well. (Hey, they’ve got “Body on Tap” shampoo – you know, from the 70s and 80s!)
  13. After the Baby Arrives: this is a CDC page and it contains links to information on all sorts of information that new parents may be interested in. They range from breast feeding information to vaccination schedule and child development.
  14. Moms On Edge – this is a blog and I found some helpful tips on organization in this post, but they also have a wide range of categories, including an “Ask Moms On Edge”, surveys, movie reviews, and behavior.
  15. Creative Homemaking: this site contains a variety of tips on organizing, from organizing menus for a month to clutter control, seasonal organization, travel and vacation, and kids clutter (among others).
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Stress Relief for the Holidays

I have been thinking about this a lot recently. I have got to find a way to make my holidays less stressful. There are so many sources of stress these days: commercialization of holidays, work (or lack thereof),

  1. Focus on what is important and let the little things slide.  I know this isn’t easy.  I’m still working on this myself, but I realized over Thanksgiving that it was much more important that I got to see my 90+ year old grandmother and that she got to see my young children than the fact that everyone in the family is harping on the job situation for my husband and how I should fix it.  I’ve been trying to focus on her joy rather than the negatives and the stress.
  2. Draw boundaries where necessary.  Sometimes people don’t realize that they are offending or bothering you.  You may need to let them know as gently as possible – or you may have to be blunt.
  3. Get away from the situation if you can.  Sometimes you simply need a break from the situation.  Step back for a little while.  Do something that relaxes you.  Come back to the situation when you are calmer and can deal with it rationally or calmly.
  4. Do something nice for yourself.  Soak in the tub.  Get a pedicure. Find a quiet spot and read your favorite book for 10-15 minutes.  Talk to someone else about the stress or ask for some assistance, depending on what is stressing you.  Get away from all of the activity for a little while; find some quiet time.  Get up 15 minutes before everyone else so that you can get a quiet, slower start to the day.  Go to bed 15 minutes early for some peace and quiet.  Try meditating for 15 minutes before bed.
  5. Cut back on holiday activities.  I know that if you travel somewhere for the holidays many people probably want to see you, but you can overextend yourself easily.  Try to arrange a get-together in one place of as many people as possible to avoid having to drive around through your entire visit.  And know your limits – simply say “No, I’m afraid I can’t make it over this time.  I’m sorry but we’ll have to visit next time.”

I really think that holidays should be less about stress and driving around and seeing absolutely everybody and more about really enjoying the time you have with the people you do get to see.  If you spend more time in the car than you do visiting with people, you are going to be stressed.

I realized this holiday that I really  have to look at what I’m doing wrong.  This was the most stressful holiday I’ve ever had.  I enjoyed very little of it and there has to be something I can do to avoid a repeat of it.  The things I listed above are some ideas I’ve had about my own experiences.  I also realized that I set myself up for some of my stress; I tried too hard to please everybody and neglected my own needs.  That has got to change for the next visit.  Take some time to look at what you didn’t like about the last holiday and think about what you can do to improve it.

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