According to the American Psychological Association, although the holidays are joyful, many people report stress and fatigue through the holidays. Even work can creep into your festivities and stress you out. “During the holidays people in the United States are much more likely to say they behave in sedentary ways like watching TV, sleeping, eating and drinking to manage their stress.”
We all do it, who doesn’t love curling up and snacking to deal with stress. It turns out, though, that there is a daily ritual for stress that actually works and is quite healthy, especially during the holiday season!
It’s all about brewing tea. A study by psychologist Dr. Malcolm Cross at City University London found that even a single cup of tea can significantly reduce stress. It’s not all about the ingredients, however, it’s also about the act of making a cup of tea. Boiling the water, taking five minutes to breathe deeply and wait for your tea to brew.
Although tea is seen as a very British thing, Dr. Malcolm says that psychological aspects of tea enhance the effects of its chemical make-up on our bodies and brains! Which in some way, explains why we turn to tea in our time of need, and why even in America, certain teas are becoming much more popular.
Be present while you boil the water
Stress is inevitable, so take ten minutes out of whatever you’re doing and stand by the teapot/kettle/water while you boil it. Breathe in for two, out for three, in for three, out for four and so on, until the water has boiled.
Choose a mug you associate with moments of calm
A big, tranquil blue mug is perfect for this, if you’re using a loud, colorful, large mug, you won’t be able to make those psychological connections between the act of picking up your mug and a calm, stress-free moment.
Make sure your choice of tea is appropriate
Black tea, chamomile, peppermint, green tea, and matcha are all great for stress-relief. If you want to instantly restore peace, calm, and normality make sure to have your tea sugar-free and take some deep breaths while you sip. A good idea is to go to a quiet place when holiday stress is getting too much and practice your mindful tea routine.
Ready to try this over the holiday season? It’s a good idea to start now so that on the big day you’ve already trained your brain to accept calm and peace while you drink.
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