Health & Fitness

11 Science-Backed Merchandise to Enhance Your Temper and Cut back Stress

Sometime between week 1 AC (after coronavirus) and week where are we now? It became pretty clear that the ongoing pandemic was weighing on our state of mind. And, while helpful, there are only so many headspace meditation trails to be made. That’s why we reached out to mental health professionals to share the tools of the trade that have been proven to improve mood, calm anxiety, and reduce stress.

11 products proven to boost mood, calm anxiety, and reduce stress

Google Home Mini Courtesy Image

1. Google Home Mini

Seek advice from Solara Calderon, Ph.D., a licensed clinical psychologist in San Diego, CA, who uses this device to teleport herself out of the relentless cycle of messages to a location in the zen every evening. “From ocean waves to crickets and pounding rain, I love soothing sounds,” she says. “I imagine myself sitting on the beach, sitting by the campfire and looking at the stars or watching the rain fall outside my window. This combination of sound and image helps me to distance myself from the mundane quarantine life and to remember pleasant moments in the past. It also reminds me that those moments will come back in the future, ”she continues. Studies have shown that listening to nature sounds promotes relaxation and induces physiological responses such as a decrease in muscle tension and heart rate. “One study in particular sought to explain why this is the case. It found that hearing natural sounds can affect brain activity and the autonomic nervous system in some people, especially those with high levels of stress.” So, “Hey Google, play Country Night Sounds.”

[$39.99; bestbuy.com]

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Sonoma Lavender Pure Lavender Essential OilSonoma Lavender Pure Lavender Essential Oil Courtesy Image

2. Lavender essential oil

“Research has shown that lavender actually has anti-anxiety and stress-relieving properties, among other promising properties,” says Carla Marie Manly, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist in Santa Rosa, CA. We will take it. Manly also appreciates that lavender “evokes a feeling of spring, fresh air, and sunshine,” three things we could all use right now. Put a bottle on your desk and a spray bottle in your car. It has never been easier to reduce stress and improve your mood.

[$19; amazon.com]

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Deer crossingDeer crossing Courtesy Image

3. Crossbreeding

The next time your partner yells at you about playing video games, let them know that they are approved by the therapist. “There’s a reason the Nintendo Switch sold out last March – it’s a certified, blissful, and calming escape from current reality,” offers New York-based therapist Taylor Orlandoni, LMHC. “To the surprise of those who haven’t played it, Animal Crossing is shown to elevate the mood and alleviate negative thoughts, emotions, and feelings. And if you’re skeptical, check out Reddit for hundreds of personal anecdotes. “

[$59.99; nintendo.com]

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How to Relax by Thich Nhat HanhHow to Relax by Thich Nhat Hanh Courtesy Image

4. How to Relax by Thich Nhat Hanh

“My favorite relaxation book – which I read frequently and recommend to clients – is a pocket-size book called How to Relax by Thich Nhat Hanh, an expert on mindfulness,” says Risa Williams, LMFT, therapist, coach, and author of The Ultimate Anxiety Toolkit: 25 Ways to Worry Less, Relax More, and Boost Your Self-Esteem “All of Thich Nhat Hanh’s books are good for providing insight. However, the ease of writing this book makes it especially easy to read when you are stressed out. Hanh reminds us to stay in the present moment, appreciate what we have, and breathe through intense emotions to help us feel relaxed and calm. “

[$9.95; amazon.com]

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Alpha-Stim AIDAlpha-Stim AID Courtesy Image

5. Alpha-Stim AID

Josh Briley, Ph.D., Texas licensed clinical psychologist and director of science and education at Electromedical Products International, Inc., has this FDA-cleared cranial electrotherapy stimulation (CES) device both personally and with his patients used with much success. “Within minutes of putting the ear clips on your earlobes and adjusting the flow to a comfortable level, you will feel very relaxed and calm, as if your anxiety and stress have just melted away,” says Briley. The product is backed by more than 100 clinical studies showing its effectiveness in treating anxiety, insomnia, depression and pain. “I have used Alpha-Stim on veterans who have suffered from anxiety and depression for decades, and on patients who are in the midst of a suicidal crisis or panic attack. In my 17 years as a practicing psychologist, I’ve never seen anything work faster, more effectively or more safely than Alpha-Stim. “

[$795; alpha-stim.com]

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Acupressure matAcupressure mat Courtesy Image

6. Anja acupressure mat

Dr. Brian Wind, Ph.D., clinical psychologist and chief clinical officer of JourneyPure in Murfreesboro, TN, has praised the humble yet effective acupressure mat. It provides relief at the end of a long day when all you want to do is sit back and relax. The mat stimulates pressure points in the back, neck and shoulders to promote the feeling of relaxation. Based on traditional Chinese medicine, there are some encouraging published scientific research showing that acupressure works: “A 2015 review showed that acupressure was effective in relieving anxiety symptoms, although it was only temporary,” says wind. “Another 2015 study found that acupressure helped relieve anxiety in patients hospitalized for cancer treatment.”

[$30.95; amazon.com]

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A Year of Zen: A 52 Week Guided JournalA Year of Zen: A 52 Week Guided Journal Courtesy Image

7. Diary

This simple, age-old practice does the trick for Hannah Milford, LPC, at Happy Camper Counseling in Austin, TX. “When I need to get myself to a better place, I turn to journaling. I find that expressing my thoughts and feelings through the written word helps me externalize and let go of difficult emotions faster, ”she says. Countless psychological studies show the benefits of journaling, from this investigation to expressive writing for depression and writing about feelings and stress as a means of strengthening your immune system.

Try the A Year of Zen: A 52 Week Guided Journal.

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Or the No Worries Workbook if you prefer prompts.

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Bloomscape Winter Solstice CollectionBloomscape Winter Solstice Collection Courtesy Image

8. Succulents

“The benefits of plants for our mental health have been well studied. However, if you are limited in space in an apartment or if you don’t feel the urge to become a home gardener, incorporating plants into your space can be daunting. Says Orlandoni. Because of this, she advises starting with small, low-maintenance succulents for mental improvement, and points to studies like this one that showed that interacting with houseplants can reduce mental and physiological stress.

[$65; bloomscape.com]

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BlowBlow Courtesy Image

9. Bubble bottle and wand

This is a great thing if you have children: “I use bubbles with children and adults as a fun way to achieve mindfulness,” says therapist Stacy Haynes, Ed.D., LPC, ACS, founder of Little Hands Family Services in New Jersey. “Any brand of bubbles will work [for this science-based strategy]. Breathing regulates the mind and body and helps calm the brain. “How can you not be in a better mood and relieve stress after playing with bubbles?

[$12.99; amazon.com]

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MindShiftTMMindShiftTM Courtesy Image

10. MindShiftTM

“Not just another meditation app!” says April Brown, LMFT, marriage and family therapist and owner of Heard Counseling LLC, an online private practice in Florida. What makes Brown a fan of this free app is its use of cognitive behavior therapy (a science-based strategy) to manage anxiety and stress, and improve your mood. “You can choose the type of worry or bad mood you are experiencing and tailor the tools to address that particular type of concern. It offers quick fixes and tools to improve your mood when you feel bad, ”she says. Brown also appreciates all of the app’s features that derive from this therapeutic approach, as “research has consistently shown that CBT treats anxiety and depression and improves mood”.

[Free; apple.com]

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Apollo NeuroApollo Neuro Courtesy Image

11. Apollo Neuro

Dr. David Rabin, MD, a neuroscientist, certified psychiatrist, and health technology entrepreneur based in Monterey, CA, was inspired to develop this device after encountering countless patients who simply wanted to feel better but held back stress and insomnia. (Join the club.) He worked with the University of Pittsburgh, and they found that certain combinations of gentle vibrations can help improve mood and reduce stress, as measured by heart rate variability. The result: Apollo Neuro, a wearable wellness device that “trains your nervous system to recover from stress faster and is extremely helpful for people suffering from chronic problems such as anxiety and insomnia.” Studies have shown that it reduces stress in caregivers by 40 percent in two weeks and can aid athlete recovery and performance.

[$349; apolloneuro]

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