7 January Stress Busters

Happy New Year, friends! What say we kick off 2018 with some January stress busters? Hopefully you’ve been enjoying—and benefiting from—the monthly Stress Buster blog series I’ve been offering over the past few months. I pray you’re finding some new ideas and also being reminded to try some strategies you may have heard of or tried in the past.

As far as January goes, some might think that since the holidays are over, January would be smooth sailing. But January holds stresses all its own.

Many are coming face to face with paying for their Christmas spending while others are paying in pounds for their holiday eating. Some may be battling the stress of cabin fever and others are dealing with the stress of winter blues and seasonal affective disorder. And then, of course, there are the regular stresses of life that plague us any time of year. So yes, Virginia, there is indeed stress in January.

May the following January stress busters help get your 2018 started off on a good foot. Be blessed as you try them, friends!

7 January Stress Busters

  1. Before getting out of bed, start each day with a short prayer. You could say good morning to the Lord while telling him you love him and asking him to go with you through the day. Or perhaps you can give your day—and yourself—to the Lord and ask him to help you be a blessing to him and to others. As you put your focus on him first thing in the morning, you’ll be more likely to turn to him when stress begins to mount.  
  2. Increase your physical activity in simple ways. Try standing or walking while doing some of the tasks you normally do sitting down. Or take the stairs at work rather than use the elevator. Think of your own routines and get creative. Let endorphins released during exercise combat the stress of the day.
  3. Take some time one evening to relax and re-read the Christmas cards and letters you received in December. Most of us are so busy during the days before Christmas that we don’t have the time to truly savor the beauty and messages of the holiday greetings we received. After reliving those greetings, go ahead and recall some of your favorite moments of the season and give God thanks. 
  4. Soak up some sunshine every time you get the chance. January can have an abundance of gray days so when the sun comes out, take advantage and recharge. Whether at home or out and about, when it comes time to find a place to sit, choose a spot in the sun. And if possible, spend some time outside when the sun is shining. Soak up the rays even if the air is still cold.
  5. Make a few simple changes in spending habits to help pay off your bills more quickly. Instead of buying bottled water or expensive hot drinks, fill up a stainless steel insulated bottle or tumbler with your favorite hot or cold drink and take it with you. Also, don’t spend your change. Save it and apply it to a bill that’s weighing on your mind. Spend a few minutes evaluating your habits and see what else you might be able to do.
  6. Make the most of the cold weather and enjoy the cozy comforts of January. Savor the warming effects of candlelight, comfy throws, snuggly sweaters, and fires in the fireplace. And don’t forget to wrap your hands around a cup of hot cocoa, coffee, or spiced tea. Enjoy!
  7. Break free and go on a spur of the moment outing. If you’ve been snowed in or are staying in as much as possible due to bitter temps, brave the elements and get away from the stir-craziness of your four walls. Go see a movie, meet friends for coffee and conversation, or go wander the aisles of your favorite home improvement store and make plans for spring and summer projects. Do something to re-energize your spirit.

Here’s to less stressful living in 2018—in January and beyond!

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” 1 Peter 5:7 NLT

*Which of these stress busters will best hit the spot for you?

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, comes out in early February. One lucky subscriber (new or current) will receive $15 gift card to Starbucks and a signed copy of my book to use personally, give as a gift, or donate to a library. Sign-up is free and to the right! (If you’re on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click View Full Site to find it.)

*Flickr photo by Caaru, Creative Commons License

Mother of the Bride Relaxation Time—with Coloring!

broadstreet-coloring-books

Mother of the Bride, I’m sure you’ve noticed the adult coloring book craze that’s swept the nation the past year or so. I haven’t jumped on the bandwagon myself yet, but I know lots of folks have and are thoroughly enjoying relaxing through coloring.

Since relaxation is something every mother of the bride longs for (and needs to work into her schedule), why not try coloring, MOB? If you enjoyed coloring as a kid, I bet you’ll love it now, too. And if you didn’t really care about coloring in your younger years, you could still give it a try. After all, we change as we grow older and often develop new hobbies and interests.

Adult coloring books can be found almost anywhere books or crafts are sold now, both in stores and online. BroadStreet Publishing, the publisher of my book Mother of the Bride, is one of many publishers offering adult coloring books. The photo above shows a few of the ones they offer—The 5 Love Languages® coloring book, Beside Still Waters, Cattitudes, and This Is the Day the Lord Has Made.

If you’re ready to relax and refresh through coloring, MOB, here are links to the coloring books BroadStreet offers as well as some links to the coloring books my blogging and artist friend Jana Botkin offers on her website. Hope you find one you’d like to try!

Majestic Expressions coloring books by BroadStreet Publishing

Heart of the Parks by Jana Botkin

Other “Heart Of . . .” coloring books by Jana Botkin

*You might also like to read Relax and Refresh with This Wedding Story and An MOB Prescription: Movie Fun! 

mob-meme-relax-and-refresh

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, will come out in early November. One current or new subscriber will win a $25 gift card to Barnes & Noble so don’t miss out. Sign-up is free and to the right!

*Photo courtesy of BroadStreet Publishing