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15.02.2014
One thing that you don't want to do is think about all the negative outcomes before your big moment.
Some people a superstitious about rituals before important events, but there are benefits that come along with consistently doing the same things before a game or performance. Whether you need to plug in some music, take a deep breath, or surround yourself with a calming color, there are ways to lower your heart rate and put you in a good place to perform at your best. Please share this where you think people would benefit the most using the sharing buttons on the left !
The wonderful thing about the internet is that there is a style of music available for everyone.
There are many calming music radio sites available – some are free, some are a subscription payment model. Over the last six months or so, it is safe to say that my wife and I have been under a bit of pressure. I’ve been sick with a monster ‘flu – I actually took two weeks off work and spent most of it in bed. My wife’s father is very sick and the pain management drugs he is taking to keep him comfortable for the little remaining time he has left are bombing him out.
My wife’s job over the last year or so has also been rather unpleasant and most stressful too. However, this, combined with the hit to my income in my recent job change, isn’t doing our bank balance any favours. We had just decided together on subject choices with our oldest daughter for next year, when an unexpected opportunity at yet another new school has been offered to her.
It is safe to say that this combination of normal family events – that happen to all families – has involved some laughter and some tears.
Too many questions, big decisions, friendships, unknowns, life, death, worries: all mixed together to cause stress and tension. I’ve been in a musical theatre show with Nuworks Theatre ; a small independent amateur theatre group based in Melbourne.
I’ve been going for long, brisk walks at lunch time around the parks and gardens near where I work.
My oldest daughter (almost 15yo) has also been involved with several musical theatre shows with Nuworks – singing, acting and dancing. However, with a bit of effort and planning, it is possible to find some time to calm down and do something that you love…. Perhaps you could have a look at your calendar or diary and deliberately block out an hour of “you time” ? When and how do you fit in time for yourself, to recharge your batteries, to unwind, to do something you find relaxing or love to do ? Please welcome to our blog Ashely Sotelo who has written a sensational Guest Post article about a concept that rolls off the tongue very easily… but actually can be harder than it instantly appears. There are tricks that you can employ to induce a state of peace into your troubled mind, and in a while, you will be reading about them. When you are feeling stressed, you can break the tension by engaging in an activity that you enjoy.
I am pretty sure that you’ll agree that great food does not only delight your taste buds but also makes you feel better.
A combination of all of the three suggestions above will go a long way towards helping you learn the art of relaxation.
Ashley Sotelo is a pro-active health enthusiast; she does research for various leading health companies--focusing mainly on the different alternative treatments available for chronic illnesses.
Changing bodies, changing minds, changing thought processes, changing attitudes, discovering identities, changing schools, changing friends, peer group pressure, parental pressure, trying to fit in, not wanting to fit in, testing boundaries – it’s all stressful stuff.
Stress from their family, stress with their friends, stress and pressure from their school and teachers, stress with money, jobs (getting one and keeping one), driving, relationships, body image, aging grandparents, exams, exposure to drugs, sex and sexuality – the list goes on. Helping your teenager through the potentially stressful times in their life is going to be important.
Teaching your teen to handle stress on their own in a positive way, and not handling their stresses for them, is a great way to teach them valuable life skills. So, how do you help your child, who not so long ago probably didn’t have a care in the world ? At the risk of sounding cliche, the key to helping your teenager is with talking, communicating, asking questions and providing options. Family dinner time can be an excellent situation during which to solve the problems of the world and your teenagers’ part within it. Sometimes, the solution to common teenage stresses and pressures can be exceptionally boring. Educational issues such as managing and completing homework and exams really only have one guaranteed way of success – regular and consistent effort on behalf of the student. The challenge for the parent often can be motivating and helping their teenager to consistently and regularly complete their homework and studies. Reducing the feelings of overwhelm can go a very long way to help your teenager overcome their stress.
One, two or three bad marks on their test or assignments does not mean that the world is going to end. Giving your teen real information about the implications and realities of these situations is going to help them avoid stress and make appropriate decisions. Help them choose the right friends, help them to have fun without drugs, and provide options of where they can hang out so they won’t be tempted to make the wrong or inappropriate choices.
Provide some stress relieving ideas and options to your teenager when the inevitable stresses of their rapidly changing world catch up with them.
Help them schedule some time to listen to calming music, or classical music, or calming jazz music, or relax on the couch with their headphones on. Help them to meditate – not necessarily from a “peace, love and mung beans, obtaining spiritual enlightenment while contemplating their navels” meditation…..


Encourage your teenager to play a sport, play a musical instrument, read a book, to invite a friend over to watch a movie, to do something creative, to follow their passions. But I think the reality is more along the lines of a combination of belaying my daughter at an indoor rock climbing place on a Sunday afternoon, then crawling around and contorting under some desks at work wrestling with some computer cables on the Monday.
Not because I have deliberately made the concious descision to not post more calming music, information, videos, updates, or relaxation suggestions. Taking the time to listen to calming music is one of many ideas mentioned within the pages of this blog. Recently I was reading some articles and suddenly realised that it’s all well and good to say, “Oi !!
Then I started to look around my immediate surroundings and got to thinking about what I and others I know do to deliberately relax. Probably the most obvious method and location of calming down is to go on holiday or vacation.
But, not everyone has the time or the resources to head to their nearest tropical paradise when-ever they feel like it.
A spare bedroom, a corner of your lounge room, a special chair, a quiet place where you can close the door and shut out the world. Building on the idea of a specific area within your home, perhaps you have some space in your backyard, or a friends back yard, where you can go out of your way to create a purpose built Man Cave or She Shed. There is a growing realisation that public relaxation spaces are becoming a requirement in city planning. Pampering yourself, be that in a public Day Spa that might cost a few $$$, or taking the time to turn off your mobile phone and running a nice warm bath with a sprinkle of your favourite essential oil WILL do you the world of good. Immersing yourself in bubbling, steaming hot water for 30 minutes (or more if you can) will soothe your body and relax your mind.
I made a little video to explain what is contained within the pages here and how this site can help you to calm down, relax, reduce your stress, lower your tension and help you to just chill out. Being responsible for a small but rapidly growing human can bring about a very complex set of feelings. Are you suddenly finding it difficult to deal with the stresses of raising your children – be they brand new babies or toddlers, tweens or teens ? Clenching teeth, voice rising in pitch or volume, you may feel your heart begin to race, sweating, headaches, loss of balance: these are all signs of someone who needs to stop what they are doing and try to relax.
Facing your problems head on is going to help you with lowering your stress levels almost immediately. You will need to learn (and try) to remain calm throughout the many different and difficult situations that children of all ages can ‘throw’ at your family and into your life. Some of these stress-busting options and coping mechanisms require patience and practice: not easy in “the heat of the moment”. However, when armed with a bit of foresight, these suggestions can make life just that little bit easier.
The simple support we gave each other in that moment allowed each of us to calm down… just a little. Inhaling slowly, counting to 10 and then exhaling slowly, also while counting to 10, then repeating this several times will have an immediate effect on your stress levels.
Filling your lungs with air and oxygenating your body and brain allows you to consciously stop and assess what it is that is making your heart race, your blood boil or your mind turn to mush. Coping in this way with long deep breathes allows you to formulate your next thought, or action, or words. The conflicting directions his family was pulling him in at that moment in time was causing him a major tension headache. Stopping and breathing allowed my brother-in-law to focus, to think, to calm down, to determine the best course of action and to cope with the situation. Depending on the seriousness of the situation and how upset you are, going for a walk is an excellent way to cope when you feel that stress attack coming on. Clearing the mind, getting some fresh air and temporarily removing yourself from the stressful situation can help reduce your stress levels. Grabbing the phone or MP3 player on the way out the door and listening to some calming music while walking can double the benefits.
Make it clear that they do need to eat their vegetables at dinner time, that throwing a tantrum when you do not buy them a chocolate bar at the supermarket is not the way to behave, that saying “thank you” when someone gives them something is the correct response. Young children do not need to know “why” (and usually they cannot understand anyway) – they just need to know “what”. Homework, school, teachers, expectations, growing bodies, peer and social pressures, sex, drugs, rock and roll – nightmare !! However, it also can be one of the most rewarding and uplifting delights you will ever have the pleasure of experiencing. You may like to read further about Stressful Parenting and the Art of Not Doing Stupid Stuff. I found it very motivating to paint in your studio surrounded by all your lovely paintings. Whether you are giving a presentation, starting in an important game, or have a dance performance it is easy for stress and anxiety to get in the way.
Color psychology has become more well-known recently and it also has an impact on mood, anxiety and relaxation. I’d like to be able to say that I was saving princesses from fierce dragons which is what caused my compressed disc and disc bulge. However, I am pleased to say that I have recently changed roles and while I am really enjoying my new gig, it is very busy and I have more responsibility.
She has recently made the decision to go “casual” in this role – mainly so that she can spend more time looking after her father and his affairs. This has been a big adjustment for both of them and to their credit they have handled it extremely well. This newest school specialises in music and drama, which is what my oldest daughter enjoys and excels at.


We’re almost ready to do a couple of gigs now that the new bass player is comfortable with the songs.
I am hoping that soon she and I can be in a show together, but given that I am an Embarrassing Dad, she may not be as enthusiastic about this as I am. We will probably go to Jamieson (near Mt Buller, three hours’ drive from our house in Melbourne) for a few days, come home and hang out for a few days, then go back to Jamieson for a few more days. Fresh air, feeding the birds, walks and adventures along the river and in the Australian bush, an open fireplace in the winter, swimming in the river in summer, sleeping, reading and eating is about it in Jamieson. If you are, then you most likely need to give yourself a break from whatever you are doing right now. Learning the art of relaxing yourself is not difficult at all and can prove especially helpful when one stress after another comes your way. If you ask me, the first image of a meditating person that pops up into my mind is that of a person doing yoga. Music plays an important role in meditation, as it helps you focus on your thoughts and drown out whatever noise you may hear in the background.
Finding a comfortable position for your meditation will help minimize distracting thoughts. Take note of the rise and fall of your chest and crowd out all other thoughts from your mind. Experts note that using guided imagery for meditation will help you keep restless thoughts at bay. If you are into sports, you could also try to release your pent-up tension by playing or watching a game. Experts say that watching a movie is a great way for you to stop thinking of, at least for a few hours, the worries building up in your head. Foods high in selenium content such as nuts and tuna, salmon, cod, and shiitake mushrooms, can aid in minimizing depression and anxiety.
Most people alternate between the two – sometimes it’s simple, other times it is a major challenge and a huge source of stress and worry. All of them require a form of self-control, of conscious and deliberate mind set, a healthy dose of humor and some learned behaviors.
Going for a walk around the block, or to the shops, or through the local park is a very similar stress reducing alternative to the deep breathing mentioned above. I highly recommendA  anyone desiring to improve their craft to spend time with you in your studio. Make sure you have everything you need for your big day this includes, equipment, note cards, uniforms, and anything else you may need. Whether you are using music to wind down and calm yourself, or get pumped up and excited, music has the ability to greatly influence you and your mood in that particular moment.
Deep breathing is a key component in meditation, hypnosis and yoga which are all tied into relaxation, and have an overall calming effect.
Depending on the person the color green may have a calming effect and the color red could cause more stress. By focusing on the present you will lessen the “what if’s” and be able to focus on the task at hand. We had three gigs last week and two this week for our version of “Roaring Girl” by David Dunn. Often, what we need to make us feel better is a mini deviation from the task that is causing us frustration.
However, yoga is not the only form of meditation you can employ although it is the most common form.
Meditating in a place with loud music blaring from a nearby speaker just would not help you concentrate on your thoughts. Their minds will race at first (“so much to do, not enough time to do it” type thoughts will run through their thoughts).
Take a chill pill !!!”, but that is not necessarily helpful when you might be in the middle of some noisy or stressful situations. I will always remember your delicious Chai Lattes your banana bread and nutritious lunches your generosity of time and other things you did for me. If you are preparing for a presentation, blocking out surrounding sound and focusing on music can be exactly what you need to relax before your event. So when you are going into an important event a few deep even breaths can calm you down just enough to reduce anxiety and get you in the zone to perform at your best. Being aware of the colors around you when you are preparing for an event can possibly help you perform better when the time comes. She also relaxes by chatting with her friends using her thumbs and various electronic devices. If you are having a bad day, it is best that you keep your mind off the unfortunate events that have transpired in the past hours.
Avoid giving only ultimatums, but tell the teen about choices for the best possible outcome.
I have never been more motivated to hit the canvas (with a light touch), and confident in my ability to do so!
You know what I'm talking about If there are other artists out there that think ( like me) that your not good enough or your scared for what ever reasons believe me they'll be quickly put to rest with this wonderful teacher who I now consider my friend.A  Thank You Arleta i hope to see you soon. There is nothing more stressful than arriving at the venue and realizing you forgot one of your cleats, or your lucky socks!




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