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yoga to reduce anxiety and headache

New Year’s Resolutions for People with Migraine Disease and Headache Disorders

You have almost made it through 2020 and the holiday season! Do you normally create a list of  New Year’s resolutions? Here are some tips to help reduce stress, fight the winter blues, and prevent headache attacks before they happen:

Work

  1. Schedule a realistic day. Avoid the tendency to schedule back-to-back appointments and give yourself a chance to decompress in between meetings.
  2. Allow 15 minutes of extra time to get to appointments. This way, unexpected delays won’t make you late.
  3. Make sure your workspace (home/office) is ergonomically designed from your chair to your computer keyboard. Using a non-glare computer screen and proper lighting can also be helpful. Consider wearing glasses to block the blue light from your computer screen or use a screen filter.
  4.  If an especially unpleasant task faces you, do it early in the day; then the rest of your day will be free of anxiety.

Home

  1. Get up fifteen minutes earlier in the morning. The inevitable morning mishaps will be less stressful.
  2. Prepare for the morning the evening before. Set the breakfast table, make lunches, put out the clothes you plan to wear, etc.
  3. Don’t rely on your memory. Write down appointment times, when projects are due, etc.  Crossing tasks off of your list gives a sense of accomplishment.
  4. Don’t put up with something that doesn’t work. If your toaster, alarm clock, windshield wipers or other item is a source of aggravation, get them fixed or replace them.

Play

  1. Check your breathing throughout the day, and before, during, and after high-pressure situations. If you find your stomach muscles are knotted and your breathing is shallow, relax all your muscles and take several deep, slow breaths.
  2. Try a yoga technique. Inhale deeply through your nose to the count of eight. Then, with lips puckered, exhale very slowly through your mouth for 16 counts, or for as long as you can. Concentrate on the long sighing sound and feel the tension dissolve. Repeat 10 times.
  3. Use your weekend time for a change of pace. If your workweek is slow and patterned, build action and time for spontaneity into your weekends. If your workweek is fast-paced and full of deadlines, seek peace and solitude during your days off.
  4. Allow yourself time —every day—for privacy, quiet, and introspection.

Here are some links for more helpful information:

Heads UP: Surviving the Holidays

Tips for Avoiding Holiday Headache

Headaches and the Holidays

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