Ease Your Stress With Your Senses
Stress over finances can affect your health. When you are stressed it is natural to seek comfort. We yearn to comfort ourselves through our senses—often in ways that do us harm. We over eat, eat the wrong foods, drink, smoke, or over work. We want to control our world. You can’t control the economy, but you can take control of your environment. Here are some simple ways to ease your stress over finances with your senses.
Start with. . .
1. What you see.
What greets you when you come home? Are there stacks of bills? Is the light blinking on answering machine with messages from bill collectors?
Rearrange. Create a pleasant focal point that welcomes you when you step into your home. Some examples—a coffee table with a few of your favorite books, a dining table with a bud vase holding your favorite flower, a house plant in a basket, or afghan draped across your rocking chair.
Then listen to. . .
2. What you hear.
“Give me five minutes,” I told my three children when they were all shouting requests as I walked in the door.
We all need time to shift gears after work. Music-soothing music-is a perfect way to do this. Have your CD selected in your jam box or stereo ready to play.
You may sit in your chair, curl up with the afghan and listen.
Only after this routine do you listen to phone messages or hear “urgent” requests from children.
Avoid listening to news. News, which is usually troublesome and loaded with situations over which you have no control, doesn’t help you.
Now take a whiff. . .
3. What do you smell?
Scientists tell us that smell is often called the sense tied most closely to human memory, profoundly influencing people’s ability to recall past events and experiences. So, to take control of your thoughts about the past, perhaps you should change what you smell upon entering your home.
Some like fragrances throughout their home. Others prefer scented candles. Still others want the simple aroma of fresh food or a very clean home. Whatever your preference you can create it as a welcome home-to your sense of smell.
And what comes close to you. . .
4. What do you touch first when you come home?
If you wear a uniform you may want to change clothes. Put something comforting on your body. Change shoes. Wrap yourself in soft touches.
Finally, how does your life . . .
It may be tempting to grab a candy bar or potato chips. Instead have a healthy choice waiting.
Going through an arrival ritual can relieve even financial stress. Let your senses provide the way.
Gail holds a degree from Lamar University in Speech and a Master’s from the University of Texas. She married Sam after raising three children as a single mother. She was an educator in regular and special education for eighteen years, finishing her professional career as a Braille teacher. In 2007 She founded SMORE for Women. SMORE is a nonprofit association whose goal is Single Moms, Overjoyed, Rejuvenated, & Empowered. She is a Women’s Transition Coach and her stories have been published in several Christian books and magazines.