Life is hard sometimes. We all have days when our to-do list is longer than we’d like with increasingly more stress. It’s even more important during times like these to find ways to recenter ourselves and take a breath. Not just to prevent burnout, but for the sake of our mental health.
So, allow us to share our three favorite introspective exercises to bring you back to yourself. While all of our suggestions are fantastic even when not stoned, cannabis can elevate the experience and make it easier to shut out the clutter in your mind.
We know this one may sound a bit cliché, but it’s because it works. Research repeatedly shows numerous benefits journaling has on our mental health, including managing anxiety, reducing stress, and coping with depression. But journaling also helps you identify negative thoughts and behaviors while providing an opportunity and space to promote positive self-talk.
The best thing about journaling is that it’s sort of like cannabis – there’s no one-size-fits-all style or method. Maybe smoking dried cannabis flower is your prefer cannabis consumption method rather than say, edibles for any number of reasons. Similarly, you could write a detailed description of a dream you have or your favorite memory, rather than recording your daily experiences.
Adding cannabis to this already mindful exercise only lifts it further. Cannabis has long been known for its link to mindfulness, especially given ever-growing research indicating the plant’s almost magical healing effects. We recommend a hybrid strain that will providing calming creative effects. And of course, Greeley Gallery’s friendly and knowledgeable staff are happy to provide a recommendation from our high-quality cannabis selection.
Go for A Walk While Listening to Music
We know going for a walk may also feel a little played out, considering it’s been the go-to advice since the start of the pandemic. But like journaling, going for walks, for even as little as 10-20 minutes, have a long list of physical and mental health benefits. The most common perk of walking is reduced cholesterol and improved cardiovascular health. Still, walking also improves sleep quality, lowers stress, improves our mood, and increases our energy and stamina.
But, have you ever listened to music while walking? In our opinion, it can completely transform your experience. Put together a fun playlist for the event and pretend you’re walking to your own theme song. Or create one dedicated to enhancing the magic of nature while you appreciate the flowers in bloom or stare in wonder at whispering treetops. Consuming cannabis will only heighten your curiosity, especially if you choose a creative or silly Sativa for the experience.
Five Senses Exercise
This one is particularly fantastic even on its own, in our opinion. This is a well-known technique used to ground yourself in moments of high stress or anxiety, no matter where you are. Its purpose is to help refocus your mind and direct it toward your body and surroundings. Plus, it’s super easy to do and can take as little or much time as you want!
The concept is pretty simple. Choose one sense to begin with, let’s say touch, then name five things you can feel. For instance, the shirt against your skin, the firmness of the pillow your head rests on, an itch on your knee, and the breeze from an open window. Once you finish, continue through the rest of your senses, identifying one thing less each time. For example, after naming five things you can feel, list four things you can see, then three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste.
We recommend a body-heavy indica strain for this activity since they’re fantastic at heightening our bodily sensations. Curl up in your favorite chair or make a pile of pillows on the floor, then climb atop (because why not?), settle in and sink into your senses. You may be surprised at your transformation afterward.
The best thing about these three ways to center yourself with cannabis is that there are no wrong answers or ways to do them. There are no tests involved and no expectations. Just allow yourself to play and feel and be. Life is stressful, but we can do our best to find moments in the day to center ourselves and prevent stress from taking over.
Cannabis is an easy way to encourage us to do so and allows us the freedom to explore and reflect on the world and ourselves without judgment. Please stop by our recreational and medicinal cannabis dispensary, Greeley Gallery, in North Portland, for all your cannabis needs. We’d love to hear about your experiences.