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rest & relaxation

World Mental Health Day: 50 Ways To Relax

By Health, LifeNo Comments
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World Mental Health Day

Yesterday was World Mental Health Day. But I was too busy relaxing to post this post.

We all need to relax at times and we all go through spells of finding it difficult to relax. So with this in mind, here are 50 ways to relax:

  1. Talk with friends and family.
  2. Watch a film.
  3. Burn essential oils in an oil burner.
  4. Read a book.
  5. Listen to slow music.
  6. Go for a massage.
  7. Have a reiki treatment.
  8. Have a hot bath.
  1. Have a long shower.
  2. Watch a TV series.
  3. Plan future events to look forward to.
  4. Online shopping.
  5. Drink a cold drink.
  6. Drink a hot drink.
  7. Get an Indian head massage.
  8. Take a nap.
  9. Go for a drive.
  10. Eat something sweet.
  11. Meditate.
  12. Write.
  13. Dance.
  14. Go for a walk.
  15. Take a deep breath or six.
  16. Sit in a place of natural beauty.
  17. Do something fun!
  18. Visualise you somewhere else.
  19. Get your hair cut.
  20. Get a manicure/pedicure.
  21. Take a break.
  22. Burn incense.
  23. Splash your face with some cold water.
  24. Get some essential oils and practice aromatherapy on yourself.
  25. Chill in comfy clothes.
  26. Cuddle your childhood teddy.
  27. Play with desk toys.
  28. Look through photos on your phone.
  29. Get Creative – make something.
  30. Watch some comedy.
  31. Sunbathe.
  32. Go for a meal out.
  33. Sing.
  34. Spend time with pets/animals.
  35. Put on some mood lighting.
  36. Solve a puzzle.
  37. Organise something.
  38. Tidy your environment.
  39. Ride a bus, train or the Metro Link.
  40. Help Others.
  41. Turn your phone off for an hour.
  42. Take a break from social media.

Blog soon,

Antony

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Tips to help deal with Worry and Anxiety

By Health, Life6 Comments

I have been filled with worry and anxiety this last week. There were two main sources: my boiler breaking and money.

I managed to get my boiler repaired. But it took all week and almost everything that could go wrong with getting it repaired did. Moneywise, I’m skint. In the last two months I’ve had to find more than £700 for unexpected but essential expenditure.

I’ve been meditating for years. But I was so worried and anxious this week that I have been unable to meditate each of the three times I’ve tried.

Of course recognising that you’re anxious is the first step to addressing it.

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Here are the signs and symptoms of anxiety according to MIND:

Effects on your body:

  • a churning feeling in your stomach
  • feeling light-headed or dizzy
  • pins and needles
  • feeling restless or unable to sit still
  • headaches, backache or other aches and pains
  • faster breathing
  • a fast, thumping or irregular heartbeat
  • sweating or hot flushes
  • problems sleeping
  • grinding your teeth, especially at night
  • nausea (feeling sick)
  • needing the toilet more or less often
  • changes in your sex drive
  • having panic attacks.

Effects on your mind:

  • feeling tense, nervous or unable to relax
  • having a sense of dread, or fearing the worst
  • feeling like the world is speeding up or slowing down
  • feeling like other people can see you’re anxious and are looking at you
  • feeling like you can’t stop worrying, or that bad things will happen if you stop worrying
  • worrying about anxiety itself, for example worrying about when panic attacks might happen
  • wanting lots of reassurance from other people or worrying that people are angry or upset with you
  • worrying that you’re losing touch with reality
  • rumination – thinking a lot about bad experiences, or thinking over a situation again and again depersonalisation – feeling disconnected from your mind or body, or like you’re watching someone else (this is a type of dissociation)
  • derealisation – feeling disconnected from the world around you, or like the world isn’t real (this is a type of dissociation)
  • worrying a lot about things that might happen in the future

From: MIND – Anxiety symptoms, Last Accessed: Saturday 21st October 2017.

There’s lots of advice out there about what you can do to deal with worry and anxiety. But what actually helped me deal with my worry and anxiety? Doing these:

  1. Off-load to a supportive friend – This gave a voice to my worries. The simple act of telling someone helped me sort through my worries and realise what was and wasn’t within my control.
  2. Remind yourself what is outside of your control – I was worried about a lot of things outside of my control. It helped to constantly remind myself to try not to worry about things I had no control over. That I should focus on doing things that were within my control.
  3. Double or triple relaxation time – This was something I did to reduce my heightened stress levels because of the worry and anxiety. At first I did feel guilty spending so much of my time relaxing. But each time I felt guilty, I reminded myself that this self-care was essential in order to prevent mental illness.
  4. Distraction – This is something I did repeatedly during my relaxation time. Intruding thoughts and emotions of worry and anxiety would often enter my head and it was my job to ignore those thoughts and distract myself from them.
  5. Write down all worries – It helped to get the worries out out of my head where they were going round and round like a circulating CD stuck on repeat. It also put my worries into perspective, helped me face them and sort through them. This cleared my mind, giving me clarity that allowed me to start planning what needed to be done. Anyone that’s been worried or anxious will know that the emotions make it difficult to think clearly. So this strategy was really helpful.

I’m proud I managed to get through this week. I’m hoping I wont have another week like it for some time.

Take it easy and write soon,

Antony

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A List of Things I’ve Done on a Week of Annual Leave

By Amazon, Books & Authors, Friends & Family, Games, Gay, Happiness & Joy, Health, Life2 Comments

I’ve just been off work for a week on much needed annual leave. I’ve had a great week off, the weather has been warm, but with intermittent sun and showers. Here’s a list of things I’ve done:

  • Had plenty of rest and relaxation – including some naps here and there.
  • Finished reading Carrie by Stephen King and reviewed it.
  • Attended Wigan Pride (gay pride event), organised by BYOU+. It was a great event which included: a parade led by the legendary Sir Ian Mckellen (better known to some as Gandalf or X-Men’s Magneto), a stage with local performers performing (also opened by Mckellen) and a marketplace of information stalls. BYOU+ and the residence of Wigan did Wigan proud and it is an event that I shall look forward to attending again in the future. Here are some photos from the day:
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Wigan Pride Parade (1)

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Wigan Pride Parade (2)

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Wigan Pride Parade (3)

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Wigan Pride Parade (4)

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Wigan Pride Parade (5)

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The closest I could get to Sir Ian Mckellen (under the rainbow brolly).

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Wigan Pride Main Stage

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Sir Ian Mckellen opening the main stage (1)

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Sir Ian Mckellen opening the main stage (2)

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A photo of a rainbow from my bedroom window.

Blog soon,

Antony

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The difference between a House and a Home

By Home4 Comments

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My Apartment is in a former Cotton Mill. Image Illustrated by Sye Watts.


A house is a building usually with four walls, a roof, windows and doors that people live in. Whereas a home can be any sort of dwelling and is infinitely more. A home is:

  • A destination that you always look forward to arriving at.
  • A sense of belonging.
  • A place where kin come together to socialise, share meals, drink and be merry.
  • A place filled with laughter.
  • A place where birthdays, Christmas and other events are celebrated.
  • A place of mental and emotional comfort.
  • A place of physical comfort.
  • A place of good memories.
  • A place of love, affection and sex.
  • A place that can be quiet or noisy.
  • A place that may have children, pets and plants that need caring for.
  • A place of growth.
  • A place of life and death.
  • A place filled with sentimental items: photos, ornaments and artwork.
  • A place of safety.
  • A place where you can be yourself without fear of judgement.
  • A place where you can feel exactly as you do without having to explain.
  • A place you feel yourself immediately relax on entering.
  • A place of mediation and reflection.
  • A place where you can dance unobserved.
  • Somewhere that there’s always a cup of tea on offer.
  • A place where good meals are made and devoured.
  • A place filled with sentimental items: photos, ornaments and artwork.
  • A place where personal hygiene takes place.
  • A place where pyjamas are worn.
  • A place where books are read and your imagination is ignited & stimulated.
  • A place where TV and films are watched.
  • A place where music is listened to and enjoyed.
  • A place of privacy.
  • A place where some practice their faith, religion or magic.
  • A place where more than one language may be spoken, sometimes in the same conversation.
  • A place that is part of a vibrant and diverse community.

I am so fortunate. Seven years ago I bought my own apartment (see The Move) and it quickly became my own home. But what makes me feel really fortunate, is that I have several other places that feel like home. Places where friends and self-proclaimed-adoptive-families live.

Take care,

Antony



I aim for posts on this blog to be informative, educational and entertaining. If you have found this post useful or enjoyable, please consider making a contribution by Paypal:


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