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Can't Meditate? Here are 9 Other Ways to Break Free From Stress

I know! I know! You can't meditate because when you do your mind wanders and then you start thinking of something else...and then something else comes up and your "monkey mind" goes over there now. It can be exhausting, infuriating or downright comical some days when you are trying to meditate and can't seem to focus.

Hold on - the whole purpose of meditating is to calm the mind and relax our physical body too, right?

Please don't stress out about it! Just find something else to do that calms and de-stresses you.

Here are 9 alternatives to reduce daily stress:


Spend some time every day just writing down your thoughts. Some call this a "brain dump" and find that writing everything down that is in your head, relieves stress. Other people find it useful to do a "gratitude" journal, listing everything they are grateful for every day. If you journal, get your self some nice little notebooks to keep your thoughts in.


Read a book for the pure pleasure of it! To get lost in a good story takes you out of yourself and gives your brain some respite the ordinary.


What is it about coloring that sends us into the zen zone? Is it the intricate details we find in coloring books for adults or the repetition of coloring? Is it just the quiet time we spend by ourselves coloring away. It doesn't matter, it works!

Knitting, crocheting and crafting

These yarn crafts are growing in popularity because they are so easy to get started,offer a social component, and the opportunity to create something. Destress together and maybe end up on Etsy!

Are you going to finish the other ear warmer before summer?

Gentle exercise

Walking, yoga, stretching, or tai chi can all be great ways to relax your mind and improve your strength and balance at the same time. You can do it alone or in a group and these gentle exercises help you wind down at the end of the day.


Sometimes the simplest solution is the best. If you don't get enough sleep, you add to your stress hormones. Give yourself a break and take that nap!

Pamper yourself

Maybe you love getting massages or mani/pedi's? How about a long bath, with candles, essential oils, and epsom salts in the mix? Sounds good right? Spending some time to pamper yourself regularly is great for your mind, body, and spirit.

Spend time in nature

Shinrin-yoku is a term that means "taking in the forest atmosphere" or "forest bathing." You don't necessarily have to find a forest, try a walk in a local park near you.

Make time for people and pets you love

Connect with your family, friends and pets to stave off loneliness and stress. Don't have a pet? Volunteer to walk your neighbor's dog.


So you now have a stress-reducing activity for the next nine days. Try them all or only what appeals to you. Reducing stress is the goal so find something that works for you. Share what helps you de-stress, I would like to know.

Recipe: Lavender Essential Oil

Instructions to inhale directly

Add up to 6 drops of undiluted essential oil to a handkerchief/tissue and inhale occasionally. Use up to 3 times per day.

Or use a diffuser

Add 8 - 12 drops of undiluted essential oil to a diffuser.

Tip: Lavender isn't the only calming essential oil. You can also use angelica, balsam, benzoin, bitter orange, cedarwood, celery, chamomile, cornmint, cumin, curry, frankincense, grapefruit, jasmine, juniper, labdanum, laurel, lemongrass, marjoram, nutmeg, palmarosa, parsley, patchouli, peppermint, rose, rosewood, sage, sandalwood, scotch pine, spearmint, star anise, sweet basil, sweet orange, thyme, or ylang ylang.

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