Personal Development

6 Natural Stress Reducing Cures

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Are you struggling from a bit of anxiety these days, but you've already done everything you can to get rid of it? All throughout our lives we have to deal with some amount of anxiety or stress in some form – maybe we have too much going on, or not enough going on; big decisions to make, or even small decisions to make. Sometimes we invent problems in our head and we're not sure why we are putting ourselves through it, but we are. We've read all the self help books we own and have had every kind of delicious coffee to try and relax, but still nothing's working. Well, sometimes the solution isn't something that can be bought at the bookstore. Sometimes the solution is right outside in the natural world that mother earth has created. Here are some natural aides that let us take the edge off, all for free and at only the cost of your precious and worthwhile time.

1. Watch the sunset or the movements of the sky

Please don't stare at the sun – but attending a sunset, sunrise, or being present while the sky is in it's ever changing pattern is considered in some cultures to be an out of body experience. Let yourself and your thoughts go as you witness the phenomenon of the universe – the earth moving around the sun, the atmosphere in motion, time passing effortlessly through your life. Perhaps we are the only species on earth and the known universe that are capable of being aware of the passage of time – use this power to your advantage by allowing yourself to the mercy of it all. Watch from a viewpoint near your home as the clouds drift into endless patterns to and from you and light bends all around you in the moisture in the air. How can you even think of your problems after watching such a beautiful demonstration?

2. Sit peacefully by water

They say that as long as you follow water, you will always reach civilization. Humans are about 60% water and our whole life is based on it. Most of the world's cities are on ocean fronts near the sea and situated near rivers and fertile valleys. We need water critically in our life and we use the water and the food in it to sustain life. When we go on vacation we like to choose sunny places near the ocean – it's like watching a fire. For some mysterious reason, we can always sit in front of a fire for hours and watch it burn and dwindle. And for some reason, we can sit in front of the ocean or lake, listening to the soft or hard waves and feeling the fresh air wash over us. It takes our breath away.

3. Be around plants

Plants, trees and foliage provide oxygen for everyone in the world, little bit at a time. There is a great concern in modern times about the deforestation of such large parts of the world – but if you travel in the jungle or through the countryside you will see that fortunately we still have plenty to go around. All of our cities and areas have park regions for leisure activity. Being in nature lets us come as close as we can to our oxygen providers and lets us enjoy the natural feelings associated with it, that we are usually deprived of in our apartments or homes. If you are lucky enough to have a garden or greenhouse, perhaps you have a small forest in your house already. Sit or walk near trees and plants and let nature take over your troubles.

4. Go people watching

We have a lot to think about in our lives. We want to be successful, we want to have a convenient life, we want to help others, we want so many things. And you're not alone. Go out to a public park, walk area, coffee shop or downtown core and enjoy some people watching. It's not weird – everyone does it! Bring a friend and have a fun time gossiping about others or musing about what everyone is up to. Where is everyone going? Is everyone in a hurry? What's the rush? The truth is, we all have deep and complex lives, and although we cannot share it all with one another, we can imagine and sympathize with our brothers and sisters from a distance. Spread peace.

5. Watch the outside world

You work at home, at a school, a hospital, an office, a store. We spend so much of our time inside at work, crunched into a desk, cubicle, book or computer screen. It's easy to forget what's going on outside if you're not near a window. Why shouldn't you know whether or not it's raining, sunny, or windy? If you work inside, try spending more time by the window, observing the outside world and all its intricacies. Cars are running about, birds are living their lives, clouds are developing, coming and leaving. There so much going on to think about that if you really get involved, you'll forget all about your issues. Be amazed at the wonders of man as we have built massive buildings, provided electricity and created beautiful cities for us to live in. What's not to love?

6. Enjoy a pensive rainfall

If you're from the UK or a region near the ocean, then surely you know a thing or two about rainfall – we get it almost year round! But if you're from middle America, or more mountainous regions in Europe or Canada, rain is not something that you might get too often. We don't like it when it rains because we get overcast weather and muddy driving conditions. But we do get lucky sometimes when we have the unique opportunity to sit on our porch with a nice cup of tea and listen to the rainfall, or be able to fall asleep to the pitter patter of rain on our roof. It's the world's natural soundtrack, and brings nature to us right in our home. We even have internet websites that create rain soundtracks so you can pretend it's raining out. The white noise is lovely to sleep to and gives a background to take your problems away.

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About the author

Steven Aitchison

Steven Aitchison is the author of The Belief Principle and an online trainer teaching personal development and online business.  He is also the creator of this blog which has been running since August 2006.