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5 tips to Overcome Work Addiction

by George Mensah
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Here are 5 temporary solutions to relieve the stress of mental exhaustion caused by work addiction until you’re ready to make the courageous effort to change your approach to work.

1.Take a Walk Around the Block


Close your computer and step away from your desk, then put on your walking shoes and go outside. Walking has long been recognized as a way to unwind both the mind and the body. In fact, studies have shown that a brisk walk can relieve stress and tension in the same way that aspirin does. [1]

The reason for this is because this low-impact exercise causes the release of endorphins, or brain chemicals that promote relaxation. [2] If your work addiction has left you with little time on your hands, you’re in luck. A 10-minute walk can provide the stress-relieving benefits you require to reset your mind.

If your energy has been depleted to the point where a vigorous walk appears to be more trouble than it’s worth, try a slower-paced walking meditation to help you unwind. Many forms of Buddhism practice mindful walking, which focuses on walking with reverence. This means that each step is taken with deliberate breathing, whole-body awareness, and profound gratitude. Mindful walking is intended to bring your body and mind together in a peaceful manner, and it can help you relax in as little as 10 minutes.

2.Crawl Up Under a Weighted Blanket

For many people, taking a nap is the perfect antidote to re-energize the body and mind after a long day of work. If you are addicted to work, you may find it difficult to disconnect from unfinished projects and drift off to sleep.

A weighted blanket may be of assistance. This type of blanket weighs 5 to 30 pounds and is intended to make you feel snug and secure, similar to a comforting hug. In theory, the blanket provides “pressure therapy,” which aids in the relaxation of your nervous system and the reduction of your heart rate when you are stressed. [3] Pressure therapy can increase the amount of serotonin and oxytocin released in the brain, resulting in a calm state.

Some experts recommend lying down for 20-30 minutes with a weighted blanket. However, the duration is entirely up to you, depending on your level of comfort and relaxation. You may find yourself falling asleep quickly after snuggling beneath a weighted blanket.

If a weighted blanket alone does not seem to be helping you relax quickly, you may want to add music to the mix.

3.Turn on Otis Redding

Music is frequently used to induce positive feelings. If you’re addicted to work and looking for a way to relieve the tension caused by your intense focus on productivity, fire up your favorite music streaming service and listen to some soothing sounds. According to research, “music at 60 beats per minute can cause your brain to synchronize with the beat” and produce alpha brainwaves. [4] These are the beneficial brainwaves that appear during relaxation.

You might be wondering what kind of music has a beat rate of 60 beats per minute. Consider Otis Redding. Spotify has a playlist called “60 bpm” that includes several songs by Otis Redding, including “My Girl” and “These Arms of Mine.” If you’re not a fan of old-school jams, there are other artists and songs on the list for you to enjoy. You can also conduct your own research to create a personalized playlist that is immediately available when you need it the most.

When selecting relaxing music to listen to, keep in mind that you don’t want to just pick a song because science says so. Listening to music that does not appeal to you may have the opposite calming effect you seek.

4.Say Cheese

Smiling is simple, quick, and full of relaxation benefits. It only takes getting past the awkwardness of sitting down or walking around with a grin on your face for no other reason than to relax. According to research, a simple act like smiling can reduce the intensity of the body’s stress response and lower heart rate levels after stressful activities. [5] All of this can happen regardless of whether you are happy.

When you smile, your brain releases dopamine and endorphins, two chemical messengers that help you feel better. As a result, smiling is a sneaky—yet effective—way to trick your brain into making you feel better.

Smiling can also make you look more attractive, according to research. In a study at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, participants discovered that men and women who made eye contact and smiled were more attractive than those who did not. [6]

If you want to take your relaxation to the next level, try smiling while lying on the floor.

5.Lie on the Floor

If your addiction to work has left you so exhausted that the only thing you can think of is lying flat on the floor, you’re closer to relaxation than you realize. The Alexander Technique, named after a Shakespearean actor, describes a specific way to lie on the floor in order to release muscle tension. [7]

Turning on your back with your knees bent and your feet on the floor is the technique, also known as Constructive Rest. In addition to assisting with relaxation, the specific position promotes spinal alignment. [8] But be careful not to get too close. Long periods of lying on the floor may result in soreness and stiffness. It only takes a few minutes to feel at ease with the Alexander Technique, and practicing every day can lead to longer-lasting results.

The Bottom Line

Working addiction can cause an unbearable amount of tension and unease, leaving you with an urgent desire to find relief. But, unless you summon the courage to change your approach to work and success, your relief will be fleeting. There are several scientifically supported methods for achieving a brief sense of relaxation.

Walking has been shown to release neurochemicals responsible for stress relief. Positioning yourself under a weighted blanket is thought to provide pressure therapy, which aids in nervous system relaxation.

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Furthermore, listening to music with a specific rhythm can cause your brain to produce alpha waves, which are produced when you are relaxed. You could also try lying down on the floor. The proper horizontal position can assist you in releasing the tension that has built up as a result of working overtime. The simplest and quickest way for those addicted to work to achieve a sense of calm is to crack a smile. Smiling has been shown to reduce the stress response in the body.

Now, if you’re an overachiever when it comes to figuring out how to relax, consider walking around the block, returning home, turning on smooth sounds, and lying on the floor with a weighted pull.

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