• Sabrina Jo Atto

5 of My Favorite Tension Tamers

Updated: Feb 25

"AUGH!!!! What a long day! My feet hurt and I'm tired!"


These are the words that fell from my mouth just the other day. And my immediate reaction was​​​​​​​ - Ooooh my gawd...I sound so lame...so old. As I said the words again in my head and cringed I realized that I've had a lot on my plate lately and just need some Sabby time to regroup, relax and recharge.


I don't believe we feel tired and burnt out because we're "old". I think it's in our culture to push and then push harder when there's a lot going on. Then we turn on the tv or any other form of distraction when we want to relax.



So, I'm just going to come out and say it...sometimes distracting yourself with television isn't what you need! Maybe your "television" is getting on FB or perusing the internet, distraction comes in many forms...

And I can hear you, "Whyyyy Sabrina??? Whyyy?? Don't take The Queen's Gambit from me!"



Calm Down!! You can still watch tv.

My point is, when the mind is overwhelmed and there's a lot of "noise" and chaos around your day sometimes what you need isn't a distraction but an exercise that will bring you in the present moment or something to tap into your creative mind.

I've found that a lot of times the best way to counter fatigue and burnout is to turn inward. A lot of our daily activities pull energy from us. So, when and how are you replenishing that energy?

If you're feeling tired and burnt out you might not be replenishing it enough.

Note to procrastinators of Selfcare: Taking time for yourself will make you more efficient with all the things and people on your to-do list. Maybe you're the queen of excuses when it comes to explaining why you can't make the time. (Next week's blog post will touch on this and it's for you).

These 5 tension taming activities are some of my favorite ways to get more clear headed, grounded and recharged.



1. Journaling


Journaling can be so relaxing and therapeutic. It's a beautiful way of clearing the mind of restless and overwhelming thoughts.


Grab a notebook or some paper and free hand the thoughts and ideas that are swirling around your mind.


Maybe you use a pretty notebook and pen to make it more appealing. Maybe you grab computer paper and a pencil... It doesn't matter.


What matters is you're doing something for you.


I'm a visual person so I enjoy buying pretty notebooks and journals and colored pens to use. It makes me feel artsy. LOL




2. Meditation


Whether you have a regular meditation practice or not getting still is a great way of nourishing the soul.


If you prefer to do a guided meditation you can use an app like Insight Timer. I personally like this app because I'm familiar with it. (See my Pin on Meditation Apps Here)


If you're religious and your religion has a practice for meditation (e.g. Catholicism has the rosary) than that might feel like an appropriate way to get still and practice this tension tamer.




3. Make Your Favorite Meal or New Recipe


I find cooking to be a fun and relaxing activity. I personally prefer cooking over baking. If you're more of a baker than go for it - make those cookies!


Sometimes I like to cook in total silence, other times I'll play a podcast, audiobook or a favorite music playlist.


The intention with this activity is to be present. To connect with what your doing - smell the smells, taste the tastes, revel in the senses that cooking awakens.


I'm sure you can find some delicious recipes on Pinterest! (You can follow my recipe board here)


Maybe you don't like to cook but paint, draw, woodwork - find you're favorite way to create.



4. Commune with Nature


I'm writing this in early February and I'm in Michigan, with that being said, anytime of year is a good time to get outdoors.


If your city has a parks + rec department you can find season appropriate activities.


My city offers snow shoe rental in the winter through the parks + rec department.


I say, layer up and spend some time breathing in the fresh brisk air...while getting a decent workout!


Each season has its own beauty. Take some time to explore the smells, sounds, sights and feels that each season offers. Gardening, nature trail walks, swimming in the lake, biking, horseback riding there are so many activities to choose from.


Spending time with Mother Nature is always an awesome way to melt the tension and recharge. For fellow Michiganders check out Pure Michigan Outdoors Here.




5. Read a Book


If you prefer the cozy comfort of your home, than reading a book may call to you. I LOVE reading. It's such a fun way to use my imagination.


It's different than watching television (for me anyway) I'm able to imagine the characters and settings. It's fun to get caught up in the characters story.


I think tapping into our creative brain is such an important way to recharge and refresh the mind. It's easy to get caught up in the day to day and begin to feel stagnant.


Grab that novel you've been meaning to read, and cozy up with a hot cup of tea and light your favorite candle as you settle your active mind with this tension tamer.



What are your favorite ways to regroup and recharge? or Which one of my 5 favorites are you interested in trying? Let me know in the comments below.

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