Photographed by Mark Iantosca.
We know, we know: Meditation and yoga are magical stress-busters, and we should all be doing one or both on the regular — so we are repeatedly told. While we're not denying the de-frazzling power of these practices, we'd like to take a moment to talk about a few of the many other relaxation techniques that exist. They won't stand in for a consistent meditation habit, but sometimes, a quick fix is exactly what we need to stay (or get) calm when our day (or week, or month) isn't going as planned.
To get you started, Shape has assembled a list of eight of the best strategies used by calm folks. One trick: To declutter your brain, first clean your space. When you have a to-do list that looks more like a novel, it's hard to step away to complete what may be a low-priority task — but, a messy room, apartment, or house can demand attention from your brain that could be going toward other things. Another strategy: motorboating (no, not that kind). "Trilling" your lips and making that motorboat noise can release pent-up tension. (You just may want to save this one for when you're alone.)
You could also take a page out of Leonardo DiCaprio's book: Shape reports that the celebrity recently purchased a $10 million Manhattan pad with an air-circulation system that pumps out soothing smells. If this setup isn't exactly in your budget, try burning candles or incense sticks with scents you like; sage, sandalwood, and peppermint are particularly recommended for soothing stress. Click through for the full list of eight relaxation techniques for the meditation-phobic. (Shape)