Everyone has bad weeks. Obviously I’d quite like it if I had no bad weeks and everything in my job went perfectly. But despite being made to watch it on an almost daily basis by my children, I do not live in a land of ponies and magical friendship. I live in the cold harsh unforgiving world of reality.

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So to help with this harsh existence, I have devised a series of steps which anyone can follow to help relieve the stress of this harsh reality and leave everyone a calmer, more balanced mind.

Now first things first, you are going to need a pillow.

Step 1. There are many pillows that you can choose to relieve stress. The feather is obviously the most expensive but long term, the feathers will crush and make it less useful, and the world is pretty unfair so you’re probably going to want to get a bit of reuse out of it. Next is the foam form – which is cheaper and more durable. This can be used for multiple pillow-based stress reliefs. Size is important but just a regular pillow is advisable. A large Japanese body pillow, while satisfying, is just a creepy thing to own and best avoided.

Step 2. Next comes the cover. An often overlooked issue that most people ignore but is crucial both to the satisfaction and to the longevity of the pillow. A very thin, synthetic cover is just going to tear and wear down. What you want is a thicker more durable high quality pillow case. Personally I leave nothing to chance and double bag the pillow – it makes cleaning blood off a lot easier. For extreme stress relief, you can draw a face on the pillow cover. (attaching a photo is more difficult but also possible…)

Step 3. Position the pillow in a manner that is accessible and easy to attack. Placing it flat on the bed it good for a suplex but makes regular punching more difficult and less satisfying. You might be tempted to prop the pillow up on the head board but this is only going to cause damage to the headboard fixtures. Instead, the best thing is to place it on the back of a sofa against the wall – this is just the right height for wailing on it comfortably, without causing any back problems.

Step 4. This is an important step and one easily skipped absentmindedly in your haste to relieve that stress. You need to make sure that the room around you is clear of anything that is likley to impeded your stress relieving punching. Look for anything that might trip you up or possibly limit your arm movement. Nothing is more frustrating than winding up a big stress relieving punch, only to fall flat on your face into the sofa.

Step 5. This is the stage we’ve all been waiting for. Punch the ever-loving stuffing out of the pillow, go nuts, really give it hell. It stands for everything you hate and also it’s been looking at your girlfriend/boyfriend/cat recently and it talked about you behind your back. Make it pay. Pause occasionally and pose threateningly to make sure the pillow realises the full extent of how mad you are at it. Keep punching till either the pillow is destroyed or until your arms are too tired to lift.

Post stress relief. While cooling down and breathing heavily, look upon the broken pillow and think about what you’ve just done and how it’s made you feel. Then realise that you’ve got to a place in your life where you had to read a guide just to punch a pillow. You may now want to hug the pillow and cry a little while regretting the life choices you have made. Please check back for a follow up guide called “How to cope with soul crushing despair…”

Categories: ErrantWritings

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