Stress-relieving gifts for this era of anxiety


Photo: Plant Apothecary

California just went up in flames. Other states are burning with rage at Trump’s consistent antics. Panic comes in waves as we guess what will happen to the Mueller investigation. We’re ducking like whack-a-moles wondering where the next mass shooting will take place. How will we get to work when the L train shuts down? Why are the fires so much worse this year than in previous years? (Climate change.) Will rents go up in Queens when Amazon moves in? Where is that music coming from? Oh my god, it’s the MF holiday season!

Before we completely spiral out of control, let’s take a deep breath, pour a pot of tea. Then we can sit back, and click-to-buy these products to bring down our anxiety levels and help us get through the day/the holiday season/the years until 2020. It’s retail therapy for the soul. From weighted blankets to CBD, here’s our pick of the best stress-relieving gifts you can give this year.

Shower: Calm Down Bodywash $18

The morning shower is where your mind can start spinning, wiping dreams away and remembering the political nightmare we are living. Plant Apothecary, a Williamsburg based line of products with sustainably grown ingredients has the remedy to what you need. This Calm Down organic body wash has aromatherapy to “help you take it down a notch.” Start your relaxation in your morning shower, when you use this gel that has a consistency of honey and smells like ginger and lavender “which are known to help calm and quiet an overstressed and wound-up mind.”

Photo: Porcupine Armadillo

Walk the Dog: The Trumpee Stump ($66.25)

Is our president in cahoots with the Russians? Is the Mueller investigation in jeopardy? Does our president like golden showers? All of these questions run through your mind while you are walking the dog. The “Trumpee Stump” statue, brilliantly designed by Phil Gable of Porcupine Armadillo, is all the rage in Park Slope and is now available for purchase on Etsy. Buy one for your street corner and feel the catharsis of watching your dogs do their daily business. The handmade statue comes with a security lug so you can attach it to a signpost on the street, or a lawn stake if you plan to use it in a yard.

Photo: @iamkimikimi

Take A Nap: Visit The Dreamery ($25)

Sometimes you just need to shut your eyes and make it all go away. At this point, a nap is your best friend. If you aren’t home, there is an option. Get to Soho ASAP and book a session at The Dreamery by Caspar, where you can book a 45-minute session for napping. You can sign up ahead of time online or walk in and hope they have room for your weary body. The $25 session includes beverages, comfy PJs, amenities and a private space for resting. In July, Racked (RIP!) wrote an extensive review of the experience, and it sounds dreamy (no pun intended.) “It’s what I hope being dead will be like, and that’s a compliment.” The Dreamery, 196 Mercer St., Soho.

Photo: Joya

Meditate: Let It Be Candle ($45)

Everyone says to meditate, but who has time to sit still? Every day the news cycle brings some new horror that we must stand up to. For a quick meditation, try lighting this candle, watching the flame, and repeat its mantra in your mind. This “Let It Be” candle was created by Joya in collaboration with The Academy New York and is meant to smell like clouds. It comes in teal, pink or grey. Pick any one that will transport you away.

Photo: West Elm

Sumptuous Screen Time: West Elm Faux Fur Throw (on sale, $59)

The evening has arrived, and you know better than to turn on the news. Anything but the news. Whatever you tune in to, you can cuddle on the couch with a cup of tea and a super soft blanket. Brooklyn Based’s Nicole Davis recommends a fake fur blanket to do the trick. “They are insanely cozy,” she says. “I got one from my folks last year and it’s my favorite thing ever.” They sell them at many different places and price points, but this Ombre one is on sale and is a great color. The cold weather may be coming, along with more political turmoil, but you can feel like a bear in a cave, immune to it all.

Photo: Upstate Elevator Supply Co.

A dose of CBD Oil: Upstate Elevator Supply Co. Full Spectrum Capsules ($104.99)

You may be hearing about CBD everything. When derived from hemp it’s legal in NY and believed to help with anxiety, sleep and a host of other maladies. If you’ve tried it before to no avail, it’s possible that you didn’t a) take enough, b) take a quality product, c) take “full spectrum” CBD. What you are doing is likely supplementing your “endocannabinoid system,” the most important system in your body that supports how you handle stress. I’ve had luck with this full-spectrum product when I was introduced to it by a friend and watched all my stress melt away on a vacation. (I literally spent a weekend on a raft floating around a pool.) 

Photo: Gravity Blanket

Sleep: The Gravity Blanket ($249)

There is nowhere that anxiety rears its jittery head more than during the night. Insomnia and disturbed sleep patterns are a major issue for many people. All the melatonin in the world won’t help you the way that a weighted blanket supposedly will. A weighted blanket, like the Gravity Blanket, is engineered to be about 10% of your body weight, a heft that helps relax the nervous system, in the same way, that getting a hug will. Reviewers compare it to the lead blanket you wear during x-rays at the dentist office. The weight will make you feel safe, protected and held all night long. Scientifically, it’s increasing your serotonin and melatonin levels and decreasing cortisol levels, easing you into a restful slumber. The reviews are phenomenal: On Instagram, @ranger_rad says, “It’s like being back in the womb. But drier.” We’re sold.

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