Today, while talking in a chat room with Karen, she gave me the idea for this column. You see, Karen was having a bad day.  It was the first day back to "school" with her boys and things were not going according to plan. The children were fighting, not really wanting to do their work, and Karen was having a difficult time dealing with it all.  She ventured into a homeschool chat room hoping to get some help for her struggles.

 

My advice to Karen was to yell at her children to "KNOCKITOFF!"

 

Before you all e-mail me telling me how horrible I was to tell someone to yell at her children, I am not a proponent of yelling at children to reduce your stress. 

But I am convinced that laughing will reduce your stress.  She laughed, which helped to reduce her stress.  As we talked though, I did begin to think of several ways for homeschool moms to reduce their stress during the day. I would like to include some of my favorites. 

I guess I should put in a disclaimer that I am not a psychologist.  I have never had psychological training, unless you count being sent to them as a child.  And the only credentials I have are the initials that can follow my name, Terri S. Camp Mo.M. (Masters of Motherhood).

     

One of the things I've noticed with myself is that rather than dealing with my stress, I continue to try to push through it, which ends up feeling more like pushing past my own limits. I'm learning to try to notice that my stress level is getting beyond my comfort zone, and to take appropriate actions.

 

The number one most important thing for me is to find some chocolate in my house and consume it.  Now, I don't need a large amount of chocolate, I just need a little bit.  It's always a good idea to have a ready supply hidden away in a cupboard somewhere.

I often wondered why I would enjoy a little piece of chocolate now and then when I was feeling stressed and have actually discovered it has important health properties that are especially good for women.  Just don't eat the whole bag!  So, grab yourself a little kiss, and the day might just go a little smoother for you.

 

My number two item on my list is food.  I often tend to forget to eat.  When I'm feeling myself getting extremely stressed, I can usually see that it's 3:00 in the afternoon and I haven't eaten anything today.  I try to avoid this, but like I said, sometimes I simply forget.

 

Another quick stress reducer for me is to walk into my bathroom, rummage through my make up case, find my favorite bottle of perfume, and give myself a little squirt. This almost always perks me up.  Many of us don't realize the importance of keeping our olfactory glands satisfied.  Perhaps for you a great stress reliever is to light a candle?