Work-related stress and burnout are two of the biggest sources of stress for adults. As found in a survey across 16 European, Asian, and American countries, adults in the UK struggled more than any other nation, with more than a fifth of UK adults reporting emotional distress. Not only is stress hurting personal health, but it is significantly affecting overall productivity— which is why it’s all the more important to ease stress.
To deal with stress, it’s essential that people practice self-care and start “being kind” to themselves. There are plenty of relaxation techniques people can follow, such as taking a bath, exercising, or meditation. But while these methods can be effective, there may be times when you may face a situation. In this article, we list four things you need for a DIY stress relief kit.
When thinking of relaxation, often, the first thing that comes to people’s minds is tea. Being able to slow down and have a cup of tea is known to relieve stress and reduce anxiety, which is why many incorporate it into their routines. One of the main reasons why it’s so effective in cutting down stress is due to L-theanine, which is an amino acid that can balance mood. Teas can come in different forms and qualities, so it depends on your preferences and tastes on whether you want an instant tea bag or loose-leaf tea. Some recommendations include peppermint, chamomile, rose petals, and green tea.
Another set of items you shouldn’t miss having in your stress relief kit are essential oils. A benefit of these products is that you can use them differently, like applying a few drops on the chest or neck or using them in a cool mist diffuser. As found in a study on community-dwelling older people, aromatherapy of lavender and chamomile essential oils effectively reduced depression, anxiety, and stress levels with regular use. Aside from these, you can also use lemongrass, ylang-ylang, or bergamot. Before using any essential oil, start with a small patch test on your skin to ensure you don’t have any adverse reactions.
Hoodies are the ultimate stress-free clothing. Compared to jackets and blankets, hoodies are looser around the chest area while remaining portable, making them a comfy and convenient option to wear at home and out and about. In fact, personalised clothing company Banana Moon even went as far as to create the world’s first anxiety relief hoodie, with weighted pockets, a fidget popper, and chewable toggles. Of course, you don’t need a specialised hoodie to get the stress-free benefits, as top brands have created hoodies that focus on comfort. Whether you want pocket-front or zip designs, Oakley has a wide selection of hoodies to buy online in various colours and sizes. Models like the Fade Away Hoodie are perfect for “downtime” as they feature a soft-brushed back fabric that delivers warmth and lasting comfort.
It’s no surprise that eating chocolate makes people feel good, but research has found that this also impacts stress levels. Results show that daily consumption of dark chocolate can help lower the stress hormone cortisol— largely stemming from the presence of antioxidants, flavanols, and the taste of chocolate.
Recently, there have been concerns about heavy metal exposure, but experts note that most dark chocolates are safe to eat in moderation. For specific recommendations, it’s best to eat high-quality chocolate with a cocoa level of 70% or above, such as Ghirardelli’s Intense Dark (both 72% and 86% cacao). Not only are these found to have the lowest levels of heavy metals, but they also can help relieve stress.
While some of these things may seem minor or simple, these items can go a long way in easing stress. Preparing these on hand through a DIY stress relief kit ensures you have something to help you get through the day.