Free Press Journal

Mumbai’s de-stress mantras


FARHANA MADAR lists some unique ways in which Mumbaikars are trying to beat daily stress.

Stress is something that is universal and natural as we are only human after all. Taking that jerky hop on to a bus,  feeling ever so charged up before an office presentation or running to the aid of a toddler that tripped over are ways that stress is doing its job and saving us from a fight or flight attack. However, when stress over the small and big things build up, it turns in to distress.

Coming to our own city, living in a metropolis, life can get tough. We call Mumbai the city that never sleeps, and reflexively our mind paints a happy picture. We instantly think of the good life. While precisely, we are a city of high spirits, on the flipside, we also comprise of tired souls and overactive minds in the comfort of our own beds yet, the subject of insomnia.

Pritha Saha, a psychologist and counselor that has previously worked with the Mumbai police to help the uniformed officials deal with their high stress jobs, shares, “Stress is an integral part of existence. It technically means that your body is reacting to a challenge; however, if stressful events don’t reduce like work pressure, family crisis etc, then your body remains in a state of hyper-stress. This can lead to anxiety and panic disorders.”

She adds, “Sometimes we can’t change the situation, but taking care of yourself is priority or you can’t face life’s challenges effectively.” While that is true, for this very reason, put together are some stress busting activities offered in Mumbai to bring about a calmer happier you!

Work Out A Sweat With Some Zumba:

In recent times, Zumba seems to be the trending fitness activity throughout the globe. To give us an insight, Krishna Dalal, a licensed Zumba and Fitness instructor of her very own upcoming Zumba company called Dance Heals Dance shares, “Being a Zumba instructor, my class is always like a fitness party. I get to meet a lot of people and get to learn a lot from them. It feels good to get a smile on their face from the work I do. They see positive changes in themselves and they love it.”

When asked about how Zumba can help relieve stress, Krishna comments, “The best part of Zumba is it has peppy-uplifting music along with easy and fun moves which are a non-stop part of the class so everyone can enjoy. Furthermore, she adds, “Being a dance inspired fitness form it helps vent out mental and physical stress giving one a happy feeling in the end.”

In consequence, given our city offers a number of Zumba classes to its occupants, why not consider belting out stress through positive means? Like they say, the best way to get rid of your heavy burdens is to keep your mind active; and what better way than to dance your stress away.

Treat Yourself To The Spa:

2nd lead 2Out of the shuffle of several renowned Spa outlets in Mumbai City, 02 Spa is one from the pack. They offer massages such as the Balinese Massage which uses acupressure and reflexology to eliminate stress. Their other popular service is Aromatherapy that is treated with essential oils to bring about an all around wellness.

Lastly, their deep tissue massage is a full body rub-down using finger pressure and firm strokes to break all that accumulated tension.  On that note, let your hot head and tired bones relax as you enjoy a little regale. After all, a little self-indulgence doesn’t hurt from time to time!

Sing Your Heart Out To Some Karaoke:

2nd lead 3Sherwin Sooren, Karaoke Host at Hotel Intercontinental shares with us, “Karaoke is on Friday Nights and Sunday Brunches, at Long and Short Gastrobar. Usually guests don’t expect Karaoke when they walk into a fine dine and they abstain initially.  All I have to do is convince them, that they should and certainly could dedicate a number for their spouse, partners, friends and children. That’s 80% job done.”

When asked about the nitty-gritty, he says, “I strongly believe singing at Karaoke shows definitely is the best Stress Buster, solely because you get a big round of applause, whether you sing well or you don’t and that really is happiness in its purest form. Also a good host will make sure everyone gets acknowledged, respected and appreciated.”

Enroll In A Baking Class/Session:

There’s science behind the fact that dark chocolate enhance2nd lead 4s ones mood, boosting the production of endorphins. These are, chemicals in our brain that leave us feeling euphoric. So not only will baking a dark chocolaty delight act as a mood lifter, but baking by itself can become ones new found hobby.

Owner of All My Sins Patisserie, Etee Podar who conducts personal baking classes encourages people to give baking a try, she says, “My classes are open to all age groups and to individuals who are willing to learn and have fun!”

Consequently, with a rise of baking studios and home-bakers conducting courses/single sessions, taking a keen interest in this leisured pursuit is probably a good idea.

Stand-Up Comedy Shows Await You:

S2nd lead 5apan Verma of EIC and one of India’s top comedians briefs us about his love for all things comedy, he shares, “Standup comedy is literally a dream job for me, for multiple reasons. It involves making people laugh, I don’t have to go through a monotonous 9-to-5 office routine, and as a comedian I can talk about anything and everything.”

More importantly, Sapan believes that standup comedy has helped release stress, he comments, “Often people come to me after a show and tell me that for those two hours of the show, they forgot about all their office stress or family problems and had a great time, and that’s always good to hear.”

Adding, “We as standup comedians talk about day to day matters, things that you can relate to – and we make jokes about it. So if there’s a banker in the audience, I can always make jokes about banks and finance and he can have a good laugh, and I guess that works as a stress buster for a lot of people.”

Open Spaces and Sea-Faces Are Natures Gift To You:

Last but not least, if you don’t have the zeal to try out time consuming, stress busting activities and would much rather find a simple way to ease your mind, try stepping out for some “me” time to the nearest garden or sea-face instead. As a matter of fact, psychologist, neurologist and ophthalmologist all believe that the colours of nature such as blue and green have a calming effect and bring about a relaxed state of mind.

Thankfully, blessed are we to be encompassed by the Arabian Sea, along with beautiful gardens like Horniman Gardens, Hanging Gardens and Kamla Nehru Park at our disposal. Surroundings such as these can do wonders for mental health. So putting yourself out there in these safe and welcoming is something your mind and body will thank you for in the long run.