We’re running quickly into to the most wonderful (read: stressful) time of the year. From holiday shopping to cooking and prepping for parties, seasonal stress can get the better of any of us. But thankfully, we can count on our favorite celebs to tell us exactly how we should be de-stressing. (You try surviving a press junket!) Ladies and gentlemen, here's how the stars unwind.
Get your Om on with the likes of Dr. Oz, Oprah, and Demi Lovato. Lynne Goldberg, certified meditation coach and founder of the OMG. I Can Meditate! app told The Lookbook that meditation can not only help you de-stress—it can boost your overall health. “Stress takes a toll on us, both emotionally and physically," she said. "Our heart rate and blood pressure increase, our immune response weakens, and our digestion slows down. When we are anxious, we also may feel frazzled, frustrated, and angry. Meditation is the antidote for this. When we meditate, we release oxytocin and serotonin, the love hormone and the feel-good hormone, respectively. Our blood pressure and heart rate normalize, as does our digestion.” Try it yourself at homewith a meditation app like OMG I Can Meditate! and Headspace.
Many people believe in the healing power of crystals. Famous fans include Adele, Spencer Pratt, and Miranda Kerr—who even has a crystal wand she takes with her everywhere. We chatted with crystal expert Heather Askinosie, who told us to find a danburite crystal to de-stress this holiday season. “Danburite crystal is one of the strongest crystals to alleviate stress and anxiety. The danburite meaning reassures you that everything is taken care of. It rids your mind of the fast-paced world and alleviates the constant stream of worry or checklists that run through your head. Everyone can benefit from having this crystal with him or her to keep anxiety and stress at bay.” Yes mam.
In an interview with The New York Times, Scream Queens star Emma Roberts stated that she likes to get acupuncture to feel centered. We asked Dr. Justing Neman, acupuncture expert and Medical Director at The Banyan Holistic, to explain the process. “There are a few immediate responses in the body once acupuncture as been provided," he said. "The needles, which are hair-thin, release muscle tension throughout the therapeutic area, which leads to a feeling of comfort and relaxation.” He went on to say that acupuncture signals to the brain to release endorphins that relive stress and pain. Like the sound of that but fear the needles? Dr. Newman suggested massage, if needles aren’t your thing.
We don’t know about you but we could go for a massage pretty much … always. And we aren’t the only ones. Mariah Carey once reportedly spent $1,500 on an eight hour massage. We can only dream of the post-massage nap after that. For a holiday treat, book yourself a Groupon for a massage and just chill for an hour. Your masseuse can work out any tension that you hold in your body to leave you feeling loose and relaxed. Massage will release those same stress busting endorphins as acupuncture.
If massage isn’t your jam because of the whole naked-with-a-stranger thing, look instead to Reiki. This practice is otherwise known as “the laying of hands” and is a favorite stress relief of Tori Spelling. During a Reiki session, the trained practitioner uses a variety of hand positions to channel healing energy into your (fully clothed) body. The word reiki literally translates to “universal life energy” in Japanese. Whether it’s the healing energies or just closing your eyes and chilling out that makes reiki work for people, we don’t know. But we'll take either!
6. Imago Relationship Therapy
Especially during the holidays, things can get extra tense on the homefront. Alanis Morisette was reportedly a big fan of Imago relationship therapy for keeping things relaxed at home. Rabbi Shlomo Slatkin, licensed clinical professional counselor and certified Imago Relationship Therapist told us just why this works so well: “When you are anxious, you aren’t able to make conscious and informed decisions. You will react out of fight/flight mode. If you do this, you will provoke your partner to feel unsafe and react accordingly.” Rabbi Slatkin went on to say “the next time you feel anxiety, try to take a few moments and allow yourself to calm down before you let it all out. Begin to self regulate by checking with your partner if now is a good time to talk or not. That will help them be more readily available to listen to you.” Keeping things calm at home? Always a good idea.
Remember during the Olympics when everyone went wild about Michael Phelps’s circular bruise- covered bod? He, along with the likes of Lena Dunham and Shannon Beador are fans of the ancient Eastern practice of cupping. This practice helps to relieve physical stress by using vacuum-sealed cups (hence the bruising) on skin. The vacuum promotes the clearing of old blood and cells from the body, allowing it to heal. Cupping fans find that muscle aches are relieved after just on session.
Pretty much everyone can agree that exercise is a good stress relief. Getting your body moving releases endorphins (aka the happy chemical) and makes you feel better. Celebrity yogis include Madonna, Nina Dobrev, and Lea Michele. If you don’t have a yoga studio nearby (or don’t want to commit to 20 classes for $200) Amazon Prime yourself a yoga mat and get to work. You can find yoga classes for free all over the internet. There are YouTube yogis, Yoga with Adriene is a favorite, and you can even find yoga classes OnDemand.
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