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Career Advice

10 Simple Stress Relief Tricks You Can Do At The Break Room

By Marga Salvador on November 11, 2015

Working a nine-to-five job, 5-6 days a week is no walk in the park. No matter the nature of your work-- whether you are a financial consultant or a fashion model — at some point, the workload on your plate and the high expectation environment of the office will take a toll on you and you won't be happy about it.

Pick up a tip or two that you can bring into the break room and give yourself a quick de-stress.

Breathe in... and out...

(Source: Shutterstock)
(Source: Shutterstock)

Just chill. Step away from your desk, sit on a different chair and take a breather. You don'y have to think about anything except inhaling and exhaling, inhaling and exhaling. Studies have shown that deep breathing can lower your blood pressure as well as your cortisol levels which help reduce stress and anxiety.

Plug into nature

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Aside from your get psyched mix for the commute to work, load some sounds of nature into your music player and plug in during your coffee break and bring things back to your center. The sound of a flowing stream, birds tweeting, chimes tinkling in the distance, you can find Mother Nature's playlist here.

Chew gum


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Sometimes all you need is mundane and mindless repetition. Pop a piece of gum into your mouth, stare at nothing, and chew those toxins away. There are some great tea-infused chewing gums available at supermarkets and sari-sari stores that can double the zen action.

Hug it out

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The feeling of being overwhelmed is inevitable and you might feel like you literally cannot handle it alone. The good news is that you don't always have to. Invite one of your office buddies into the break room with you and ask for a hug. There are only a handful of evil human beings who would say no to an innocent hug.

Dance (even just a little)

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This one can be tricky in the break room but is absolutely doable. If you're lucky, the room will be empty and you can stomp your feet, pump your fists, and twerk to your heart's desire. However, if you do have an audience, ask them to join you or get your professional freak on anyway so that they become the most awkward person in the room.


Laugh it off

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Stress is something you hold internally and while it would be great to shout those profanities out at the top of your lungs, that would be considered unprofessional and you could get fired for it. You cannot, however, get fired for having a laugh. Might as well make it a big one. Release the serotonin and let loose with  a good laugh.

Take a power nap

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A quick 10-15 minute nap will do you wonders in the workplace. From refreshed mental efficiency to increased productivity, power naps are another way to destress and make up for some lost sleep the night before. Some companies like Google even encourage their employees to take naps. Its a small investment for more long term results. Win-win.

Read a poem

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Spend a minute or two going over the words of your favorite sonnet, sestina, or haiku. Allow the luscious language of poetry to clear your mental counters before you reset the numbers and figures. Shakespeare or Pablo Neruda might not be your cup of tea but there are others like Shel Silverstein or Dr. Seuss with carefree rhymes for readers of any age.

Have a cuppa

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Infuse your mind, body, and soul with the healing powers of lavender, chamomile, or ginseng tea. Herbal teas are known for their calming effects and if you're in need of a quick fix, break room pantries are almost always stocked with at least one kind of tea.

Indulge a bit

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Bring out your secret stash of candy or the chocolate bar hiding in your desk drawer. It never hurt anyone to indulge in a guilty pleasure once in a while and one of the quickest ways to get rid of bad vibes is some of the good stuff. We're not talking about just sugar but a quick bite of your favorite and forbidden foods will brighten your mood. 100% guaranteed.

Be one with the peace

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Mental stress, simply thinking about a problem or amount of work at hand, can manifest as physical stress and tire you out. Be one with your inner peace; visualize your calm environment and mentally transport yourself there. As the epitome of calm, Buddha, put it, "What you think you become."

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