Was today one of those days? Have you shed a few more tears lately than you planned on? Are anxieties creeping in around every corner? Are the tensions you carry manifesting in backaches or other physical pains? As a military spouse or SO, there are so many things to worry about: the safety of our service members, our kids, family and friends far away, money, PCSing… All of us have our own lists, but many of those lists have one thing in common: they’re always on our minds. Take a moment to read the follow aloud to yourself:
I am valuable. I work hard. I do the best with what life presents me. I deserve happiness and love. I am strong.
A little self-affirmation to remind ourselves that we’re so much more than what’s going on around us can go a long way to reducing stress. But if you’re feeling worried and need more than a few words to aid in calming down, this post can help. Below you’ll find a list of self-care treatments that I hope will help you worry a little less.
(Note: The items listed below can us help to reduce temporarily worry and stress, but if your anxiety is sustained and interfering with life’s daily activities, please seek medical help.)
1. Bath salts
If you haven’t used bath salts, give them a try. They elevate a plain bath with silky water and aroma therapy. Try to use bath salts that are organic. These are made with eucalyptus essential oils, and work their muscle-relaxing magic in about 20 minutes, so even the busiest milspo can get a little R&R in their day. If you’re looking for sea salts and epsom salts, try this bath soak. It utilizes essential oils from juniper, orange, and menthol to ease tense and tired muscles.
2. Bubble bath
Continue your at-home spa treatment with bubble bath. What else is so luxurious as being enveloped by warm water and rich bubbles? Dr. Teal’s Foaming Bath uses lavender to soothe and relax. Lavender even supports better sleep. If lavender isn’t your jam, give this bubble bath a try.
(If you really want to curate an ambiance, why not turn down the lights and put on some tea lights? Is it possible to feel any fancier?)
3. Bath bombs
Make like Tom Haverford from Parks and Rec and treat yo’self to some fancy-schmancy bath bombs. If you haven’t used a bath bomb before, you’re in for some fun. Fill your bathtub with water, climb into the tub, and drop a bath bomb into the water. It’ll fizz and float and propel itself around, all the while releasing aromas and making the water feel silky smooth and colorful. Try some an assortment of scents, like the ones from D’Vine Wonders, HanZa, or Calily, to vet a variety of scents, colors, and moisturizing ingredients.
4. Spa gloves and socks
If your hands and feet have taken a beating recently and haven’t gotten the love they deserve, spa gloves and socks are what you need. Apply your favorite lotion, put on your gel socks and gloves, and then watch a TV show or two because these babies need about 30-60 minutes to soften and rejuvenate your skin. Get that mani/pedi feel without the mani/pedi price.
5. Foot massager
If foot massages help you relax and relieve stress, a personal foot massager might be in order. Whether you prefer a single row of massaging nodes like the TheraFlow foot massage roller, or multiple rows like TheraFlow dual massage roller, enjoy the foot massage that you deserve. If you’re looking for something a little different, try this shiatsu foot massager. Not matter how you cut it, treating your tootsies always helps to take off the weight of the world.
6. Calming tea
Take a cup of hot tea into the bubble bath with you, or enjoy one while you’re wearing your spa gloves, but however you choose to enjoy it, don’t forget about the soothing and healing a mug of tea can bring. For stress relief, try Honey Lavender or Kava tea. If anxious worrying is keeping you up at night, add Yogi Bedtime to your evening routine.
7. White noise machine
So you took a bubble bath and had a mug of calming tea, but you still need a little help to calm your mind and reduce your stress? No worries–noise machines have you covered. Machines with six sounds or 10 sounds provide you a variety of natural, soothing background noises that help the world around you dissolve into sleep. Don’t let worrying keep you up at night; use a noise machine and the sound sleep you need.
8. Essential oils
Essential oils are trendy right now, but the benefits of essential oils have been around for a long time. You can dilute essential oils with oil or water before applying to your skin with a washcloth, but simple ways to reduce stress and anxiety is by using a diffuser. A few drops of lavender for soothing and calming or rose for uplifting and comfort will do you good. You can also put a few drops into a warm bath. (Here are a list of the best essential oils for military spouses.)
If you’re not one to relax from sitting still, release some tension with a stress reduction yoga DVD. In the comfort of your own home, embrace this is ancient practice of controlled breathing, stretching, and meditation. After a few sessions, you may find yourself using the breathing techniques to mitigate the stress that enters your life.