It can be tough to keep your head on straight when you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed out. But don’t worry, there are plenty of simple mental exercises you can try to help clear your mind and regain focus. Here are five quick and easy ones to get you started. Happy thinking!
Mental Exercises To Try During Stressful Times – Summary
Counting to 10 (or 20 or 30) is a great way to calm down and reset when you feel overwhelmed or stressed. Taking a deep breath in and out can also help slow your heart rate and clear your head. Picturing yourself in a calm, relaxing place can help you achieve that state of mind more easily. Exercising your favorite stress-relieving muscle group can also provide some relief. And finally, repeating a calming mantra or positive affirmation can set the tone for the rest of your day.
Count to 10
One of the simplest yet most effective ways to relieve stress in a short amount of time is to count to ten.
Deep breathing activates the body’s relaxation response, leading to physical benefits such as reduced muscle tension and lower heart rate.
Finding a quiet haven to relax and unwind is one of the top stress-busting tips recommended by experts
Progressively tensing and releasing muscles through activities like neck rolls or shoulder shrugs can help release built-up stress in that area.
Repeating these affirmations during moments of stress can help reframe negative thoughts and refocus the mind on solutions.
Get the best tools to master your mental exercises successfully.
Mental Exercises Pros
Mental Exercises Cons
Count to 10 (or 20 or 30)
One of the simplest yet most effective ways to relieve stress in a short amount of time is to count to ten (or twenty or thirty). This exercise not only interrupts the negative thought patterns that can contribute to stress, but it also allows you to focus on something neutral and distraction-free.
Counting utilizes sensory and motor skills, providing a multi-faceted approach to calming down and regaining composure. So next time you feel overwhelmed, take a moment to count silently and notice how much better you feel afterward. This simple strategy can easily be incorporated into your daily routine for a quick stress reliever any time you need it.
Take a deep breath in and out
Taking a deep breath can be a simple yet effective way to relax and manage stress. Deep breathing activates the body’s relaxation response, leading to physical benefits such as reduced muscle tension and lower heart rate. It can also improve mental clarity and focus.
Even just taking a few moments to focus on your breath can alleviate some negative effects of stress. Next time you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a few minutes to take a deep breath through your nose and out through your mouth. Regularly incorporating this practice into your daily routine can have lasting positive effects on your physical and mental well-being.
Picture yourself in a calm, relaxing place
Picture yourself in a calm, relaxing place, free from the worries and pressures of daily life. You may not realize it, but finding a quiet haven to relax and unwind is one of the top stress-busting tips recommended by experts. Taking time for ourselves to recharge is just as important as staying active and eating well.
And there are numerous stress reduction techniques to explore, from meditating to participating in relaxing activities like yoga or a hot bath. Don’t let the busyness of life prevent you from dedicating some time to yourself and relieving stress. Find your calm and peaceful sanctuary, and make stress-relieving self-care a priority.
Exercise your favorite stress-relieving muscle group (e.g., neck, shoulders, jaw)
Regular exercise is important for physical health, but did you know it can also relieve stress? Targeting a specific muscle group is especially beneficial for decreasing tension and promoting relaxation. Progressively tensing and releasing muscles through activities like neck rolls or shoulder shrugs can help release built-up stress in that area.
Incorporating exercises that relieve tension in your favorite stress-relieving muscle group into your daily routine can enhance the effectiveness of other stress-relief methods, such as meditation or deep breathing. Plus, a bonus is improved strength and mobility in those muscles! So next time you’re feeling stressed, try exercising and stretching your favorite stress-relieving muscle group for a calming break from the hectic pace of everyday life.
Repeat a calming mantra or positive affirmation
In moments of stress and anxiety, repeating a calming mantra or positive affirmation can be a helpful tool. Any phrase that speaks to your values or goals can be used as an affirmation. It’s important to choose affirmations that affirm your self-worth and affirm your ability to handle difficult situations.
Repeating these affirmations during moments of stress can help reframe negative thoughts and refocus the mind on solutions. By regularly practicing affirmations, you can train your mind to turn towards positive thinking in difficult situations automatically.
So next time you feel overwhelmed, try repeating a reassuring affirmation to yourself and see how it helps improve your mindset and coping skills.
These are just a few ways neuroscience can help us relieve stress. Have you tried any of these techniques? What works best for you?
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