We experience stress daily. Stress may result from school, work, relationships, or children, but there are ways to deal with stress as it enters our daily lives. Managing stress doesn’t have to be an individual thing and would be easier done with some support.
Marriage is about supporting one another, right? What better support than that of a spouse. If you notice you or your spouse is stressing then try some of the activities below. Remember you want to do these things together.
Exercise. The endorphin release after a workout is the perfect solution for your problematic stress load.
Go on a walk. Getting outside and taking in some fresh air can have a calming effect. This light form of exercise will help you both escape from your minds momentarily as you begin to notice nature.
Take the dog on a walk or to the dog park. Dogs are always so glad to see you, no matter how long you’ve been away. Can you even think of a time when your dog didn’t put a smile on your face?
Do some light yoga. Try out the eagle pose, which is known to help relieve tension in the body.
Take deep breaths. Close your eyes and count to three as you inhale and exhale three times each.
Try aromatherapy. Bring out the essential oils, put a little in a carrier oil, and apply the mixed oils on each other. Remember to use caution when applying these oils responsibly, due to their effects.
Watch a comedy. Turn on the TV to watch one of your favorite sitcoms or movies and enjoy a laugh … or two.
Watch a funny video that’s gone viral. When you don’t have time to watch a movie or a TV show you can improvise by watching a short video clip on YouTube.
Give each other a neck or foot rub. Slowing down to give and receive massage can be great way to relieve stress in the body.
Give each other a bear hug. Hugs from loved ones have the effect of making you feel all warm and fuzzy inside; who doesn’t like this feeling? A hug may even decrease stress levels and blood pressure.
Write about it. Just getting it out there and off your chest can do wonders for someone under a lot of stress. In some ways it can be therapeutic to write down what is bothering you and allows you to reflect on the stressful situation. Share with you spouse what you wrote about.
Read your scriptures. Whatever you faith, pick up your holy book and take turns reading aloud to one another.
Have a make out session. Kissing releases chemicals that fight stress hormones in both men and women, though effects are higher in men. Kissing is also a way for husbands to transfer testosterone in their saliva to their wives, which could lead to the next activity.
Have sex. If one spouse is in the mood and the other is feeling up to it, then why not allow the endorphin release after sex help you feel less stressed.
Have a chewing gum war. Chewing gum helps reduce cortisol levels, which are the result of stress and can cause weight gain. Who knew you could prevent weight gain and stress with a piece of gum?
Try mindful eating. This might be a different experience for many of you, but it will definitely pull you out of your head long enough to really enjoy what you are eating. Notice the details about your food before you take your first bite, including: color, texture, smell. Next take your first bite and notice how it feels in your mouth, then start chewing. Chew slowly as you take into account its flavor and aroma and lastly swallow. Continue slowly eating your food and together discuss what you’ve notice.
Buy a house plant. Being around plants may cause a relaxation response in individuals. Maybe it’s because plants remind us of nature and being out in nature tends to be relaxing for many individuals.
Take a nap. Sleep allows your body to combat cortisol, the stress hormone. When you feel like you’re tired during the middle of the day cuddle up to your spouse and get some zzzz’s in.
Maybe, you haven’t done some of the above activities yet or at least not with your spouse. Doing novel things with your spouse may increase your love and marital satisfaction. That is reason enough to try doing these activities together in my book.
1. Choose one of the activities from the above list and complete this activity with your spouse.
2. Tell each other about the effects or changes you noticed after completing this activity.