Millennials – broadly speaking, those of us born 1980-2000 – get a bad rep; we can be a bit entitled, crave praise too much & are inept when it comes to face-to-face interactions.
Sure, all those things are true, but we also are more tolerant, more educated, more connected & harder working than our predecessors.
All of those great things about millennials are also our biggest stress triggers
We are so tolerant that we get anxiety about how to be politically correct & avoid offending people (I’ll be honest I keep going back and forth deleting and retyping this, trying to find a way to express this idea without inciting reactions such as “you shouldn’t have to work so hard to not offend people….” aaand point made).
We are so educated that we have full awareness of how completely fucked we are.
- We are living in a time where if you are not outraged, you are not paying attention.
- There is a reason for the old saying “ignorance is bliss”.
- Being more educated also means that you are probably in debt. College debt is a huge problem
- The economy cannot sustain the amount of college graduates hitting the job market between 2010 and 2020 (NY Post)… and because we are educated, we are extremely aware of this reality.
We are so connected that we suffer constant FOMO, are chronically overstimulated & actually become addicted to that constant stimulation.
- We are so connected to our social networks, news media, etc that we become disconnected to the present moment.
- It seems paradoxical, but it has become a fairly well known phenomena – Millennials are the loneliest generation, despite having everybody we know at our fingertips at all times.
We are so hard working that we have become labeled “work martyrs”.
- We work longer hours
- We remain connected / available on the weekends and after regular office hours
- We are less likely to take vacations
- We get paid proportionately less than previous generations at the same points in our careers.
NO WONDER WE ARE ALL INTERNALLY MAKING THE HOME ALONE SCREAMING FACE ALL DAY, EVERY DAY!
Ok, We Have Reason to Be Stressed. Thanks. Now What?
The immense amount of stress & anxiety thrust upon our shoulders has also led to the age of “self care”. Ya know, just like generally taking care of ourselves and not being attached to our phones every second of everyday, that kind of stuff, is now a ground breaking concept.
You see the term self-care everywhere, but I know (I’m guilty of it, too) you’re like ‘OK self-care is super important, I know, and I’ll get to it right after I [fill in the blank]’ … OR you practice self-care just to post about it on social and then proceed to incessantly check to see how many likes it got (again, not judging, I’ve been there).
We really need to slow our roll, people. If you honestly take a step back to look at our lives this shit is INSANE. So here are some helpful stress-relief tools that, in my opinion, can be easily incorporated into our daily routines.
There is a difference between “self-care” & “treat yo self”, although we seem to use these terms interchangeably. Indulging in some pizza & cookies is a “treat yo self” moment, it is not self-care. I am all for rewarding yourself with something that makes you happy for a few fleeting moments… no, seriously I can’t begin to express how big of a fan of pizza & chocolate I am… BUT I am also very, very aware of the difference I feel when I over indulge – sluggishness, irritability, inability to focus. This quote from the Harvard Health Blog sums it up pretty well ….
“Like an expensive car, your brain functions best when it gets only premium fuel. Eating high-quality foods that contain lots of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants nourishes the brain and protects it from oxidative stress — the “waste” (free radicals) produced when the body uses oxygen, which can damage cells.
Unfortunately, just like an expensive car, your brain can be damaged if you ingest anything other than premium fuel. If substances from “low-premium” fuel (such as what you get from processed or refined foods) get to the brain, it has little ability to get rid of them. Diets high in refined sugars, for example, are harmful to the brain. In addition to worsening your body’s regulation of insulin, they also promote inflammation and oxidative stress. Multiple studies have found a correlation between a diet high in refined sugars and impaired brain function — and even a worsening of symptoms of mood disorders, such as depression.”
I’m not saying overhaul you’re entire diet and lifestyle, just saying find that balance between treating yourself & caring for yourself. Stay on the straight & narrow 80% of the time when it comes to your diet, and save that other 20% for the treats you deserve
Breathing & Mini Meditations
Never underestimate the power of you. Everything we need is within us. The question is: is your power dormant or energized, living its best life?
If you’re feeling stressed & anxious, my guess is your power is dormant. WAKE THAT BITCH UP.
Remember all of those things we touched on at the start of this post? All that stuff is understandably stressful & when we don’t address ourselves and our role in the craziness, we let the craziness take us over. Here is a really simple way to grasp what I’m trying to express:
Remember in High School when you weren’t invited to a party & the next day everybody was talking about it and had inside jokes that you weren’t a part? Remember you were convinced there was no coming back from this and your life was over and you had no friends? Now when you look back on these times, do you say “OMG how did I ever make it out of these life or death situations in one piece” or do you say “OMG I can’t believe how big of a deal I thought that was, how silly”. Probably the latter, right?
Now, in grown up life the stakes are admittedly higher, but still really not life or death. You’ll still probably be a little embarrassed when you look back from the other side of the situation. Speaking from experience, again. I have a mental breakdown at least once a week due to the stresses of being a solopreneur with no money, but after I snap out of it (using these techniques) I’m like ‘oops, that was a bit much, sorry everybody!’
When you feel like it’s all too much, start by focusing on your breath.
- With every inhale, feel your belly expanding & filling with the power of everything you need
- With every exhale, feel your belly contract as you force out everything that is no longer serving you
- Repeat with every breath “I can & I will”
- Realize that your energy is the energy of the universe & that you are in control
- Remember that in the grand scheme of things, you will be ok
You have to really believe it, though. Don’t bullshit yourself. Or else you’ll just be an idiot sitting there breathing heavily talking to yourself. Believe that you are the most powerful tool at your disposable & it will become truth. It’s that little bit of perspective – that’s all it takes to realize that the world is not crashing down on you; that life goes on; that you will be OK.
Disconnect (just before you go to bed, don’t worry!)
About an hour before you go to sleep, put your phone away. Turn it off if you can, but if you can’t (because you use it as your alarm or something like that) just turn off the WiFi & put it on airplane mode. But really try to put it out of sight
Studies have shown that even having our phones next to us & visible cause a marked difference in our ability to focus. The same study shows that there is a significant spike in cortisol (stress hormone) when we hear our phone alert us/feel it vibrate.
Nobody’s going to be pissed at you for answering an email at 9AM instead of 9PM. You can even tell them that you are doing a digital detox & don’t allow blue light exposure after 8PM and that way they’ll be so impressed by your enlightened lifestyle, immediately feel inferior & you’ll look back at that as the time when your wellness influencer career was launched & you officially transitioned into a plant based beam of light who does yoga every morning…. or something like that.
But really, most of us aren’t doctors or holding somebody’s life in the balance every time our phone rings, so just chill.
Engaging with tech before bed also leads to worse sleep, which leads to worse mood, increased irritability, less focus and then more anxiety because you can’t get all the shit done that you need to and you keep scrolling through instagram thinking how is that plant based beam of light doing it all? Why can’t I be like her? Seriously. It’s a vicious cycle.
and now for the shameless plug ….
TONIC CBD Oil
I am sure you have heard of the anti-anxiety benefits of CBD oil. It is one of the main things that draws people in, myself included. Going hand in hand with the anxiety relief, CBD helps defend your body against the effects of chronic stress. It is an adaptogen, which means its primary goal is to restore & maintain homeostasis: our bodies’ ideal state of balance.
Ashwagandha, found in our OG & Chill blends, is also an adaptogen. When CBD & Ashwagandha team up it is an all out anxiety-relieving, balancing, restorative extravaganza. Ashwgandha has been clinically proven to lower cortisol levels (stress hormone), which is huge because prolonged, chronic exposure to cortisol can really wreak havoc on our minds & bodies.
The power couple of CBD & Ashwagandha (our OG blend) balances mood, immune function, sleep patterns & blood sugar, while improving focus & mental clarity and relieving pain & inflammation.
So what’s the difference between Chill & OG? Chill takes the calming effects to the next level by adding Lemon Balm & Passion Flower
Adding CBD into your regimen is a super easy way to not only provide immediate relief from symptoms of high stress/anxiety, but to fortify your body’s defenses against future attacks from the almighty cloud of stress hovering over all of us. YAY HAVE A LOVELY DAY!
but really, life is hard. we are all suffering & this post was in no way meant to diminish that. My hope is that you feel empowered & start taking the steps to put your mental & physical health into your own hands with all natural solutions like CBD oil. My heart & soul has gone into formulating TONIC; I blend, fill & ship each bottle myself and this all started with me looking for a natural solution for my own mental suffering. The combination of CBD & Ashwagandha changed my life so much that I had to share it with the world. Now I am on my mission to spread the love & light. Hope you will join me!
all the love ~ Brittany Carbone