Finding Calm in a Minute: 11 Fast-Acting Stress Busters

Posted by Lisa Stovall on Mon, Jul, 24, 2023


There you are: it's 3:17 p.m. on a Wednesday, and the emails are raining harder than a British summer day.

Deadlines have cloned themselves like a bunch of excited amoebas, and your laptop has developed a mean sense of irony, choosing this moment to stage its rebellion.

Stress is creeping in, painting your thoughts in different shades of "aaaargh!"

Amidst the chaos, you have the power to banish stress without any fancy gadgets. We're not asking you to transform into a meditation guru in the midst of office mayhem. Instead, we offer these one-minute stress relievers that can be done anywhere, anytime, even when your computer decides to take a nap at the most inconvenient times.

Chill in a Minute

Don't let stress take control of your day. By incorporating these additional techniques into your stress-fighting arsenal, you'll be equipped to tackle any challenges that come your way with a sense of calm and confidence. Remember, it's all about finding what works best for you, so feel free to mix, match, and customize these methods to meet your individual needs.

Here are 11 amazing ideas on how to bust stress in just one minute:

1. The Invisible Chair 

Stand against a wall, slide down until your knees are at 90 degrees, and hold for 60 seconds. It's just like sitting, but more fun because you're defying gravity and pretending to be on a chair that doesn't exist! Regular practice not only reduces stress but also gifts you quadriceps of steel. You could possibly grate cheese on them. (Disclaimer: We don't recommend grating cheese on your thighs.)

2. Deep Breathing with a Twist

Inhale deeply for a count of five, hold for five, exhale for five. Sounds like something you did when you opened your last electricity bill, doesn't it? This technique helps to decrease your heart rate and blood pressure, casting that stress into the forgotten lands. The twist? Picture your stress as a little grey cloud you're blowing away with each exhale. Who knew you had weather manipulation powers, right?

3. Tense and Release 

Select a group of muscles, tense them up for five seconds, then release. You could even make it a game: tense-and-release from head to toe in under a minute. This method gives your body a small shake-up, like a reboot. It's like ctrl+alt+del for the body. The fun part? It's completely unnoticeable, making you a stress-fighting ninja right at your desk.

4. Power Poses

Channel your inner superhero, stand up, hands on hips, chest puffed, and hold for 60 seconds. Not only does it tickle your funny bone, but science also tells us it reduces cortisol (the stress hormone) and increases testosterone (the confidence hormone). So, go ahead and be the Batman or Wonder Woman of the office.

5. Laugh it Off  

Got 60 seconds? Pull up that favorite meme, comic, or joke that never fails to tickle your funny bone. Laughter's is the best medicine. It has a magical way of instantly lifting our spirits and melting away stress. When we laugh, our bodies release endorphins, the feel-good hormones that promote a sense of well-being and relaxation. Plus, your chuckles might even brighten up your neighbor's day. Just avoid the weird llama videos - we're trying to reduce stress, not add confusion.

6. Mini-Meditation 

Close your eyes, focus on your breath, and count each inhale and exhale up to ten. Then start again. This simple act of mindfulness can work wonders. It’s the equivalent of giving your brain a mini vacation. You may not get a tan, but you'll feel refreshed..

RELATED: Mind Racing? Feeling Overwhelmed? Try Meditation for Stress

7. Aromatherapy 

Whether you prefer lavender, peppermint, or citrus, carrying a small vial of your favorite essential oil can be a quick stress reliever. Just open the vial and take a deep breath, letting the aroma soothe you. It's like a spa in your pocket.

8. 5-4-3-2-1 Grounding Technique

Acknowledge five things you can see, four you can touch, three you can hear, two you can smell, and one you can taste. This grounding technique is like a speed date with your senses, and it’s a fantastic way to pull your thoughts away from stress and back to the present moment.

9. The Power of Music 

Put on your favorite pair of headphones and immerse yourself in the soothing rhythm of your preferred song. Whether it's an upbeat tune that makes you want to dance or a tranquil piece of classical music, let the melodies wash away your stress. Music is renowned for its ability to induce relaxation, alleviate anxiety, and uplift your mood.

10. Gratitude  

Take a moment to think of three things you’re grateful for. Gratitude helps us refocus on what's good in our lives, pushing that pesky stress away.  It's like a mental reset button that allows us to let go of stress and embrace a more positive mindset. Bonus points if you jot these down.

RELATED: How Practicing Gratitude Can Boost Your Mental Health

11. Neck Stretches 

Give your head a little nod from side to side, gently giving those neck muscles a nice stretch. And if it feels good, go ahead and roll your neck in a slow circle. It's a simple move, but it works wonders in releasing all that tension you've been holding in your neck and shoulders. Plus, it boosts blood flow to the area, helping you relax and say goodbye to any muscle stiffness.

Building Your Stress-Free Sanctuary 

Stress is like that uninvited party guest who devours all the guacamole: it's part of our lives whether we like it or not. But that doesn't mean we are helpless against it. These 1-minute stress busters are your secret weapons to navigate the world of overflowing inboxes and rebellious technology.

Your well-being should always be a top priority. So, the next time you find yourself overwhelmed by stress, take a moment to pause and implement one of these quick stress-busting tips. While you may not become a Zen master, you will definitely regain a sense of control. And be sure to share this wisdom with your team, so that your entire office can reap the benefits.

What are some of your favorite quick stress busters? Share your thoughts below!

New call-to-action

Topics: Wellness at Work


Subscribe Here!

Recent Posts