Caribbean Tools for Overcoming Stress

Caribbean Tools for Overcoming Stress

Caribbean Tools for Overcoming Stress

I recently spent one week in the Caribbean. I thought I would come home with photos, souvenirs, and happy memories. Instead, I came home with a more laid-back spirit and tools for slowing down and enjoying life.

I first experienced the Caribbean flow walking around Basseterre, St. Kitts. Many shops played reggae, and I instinctively slowed down, walked with the music, and rocked my body side to side. The rocking comforted me just like rocking comforts babies.

I heard more reggae when I walked by the ocean and noticed that both the waves and I rocked to the beat.

Then when I was in St. John’s, Antigua, I heard more reggae. This time, I nodded my head to the beat and felt more peaceful.

I live in a busy metropolitan area and typically walk, talk, and live fast. After walking around the islands, seeing people walk at a slower pace and listening to reggae, I walked and talked slower too. I felt relaxed.

Thus I learned that when I’m amped up, I can listen to reggae to slow down, walk, and rock to the beat.

My Caribbean teachers also had a more “let go” spirit than me. During my walking tour in Antigua, several people bumped into my guide. She never got upset and just let it go. She had a peace about her that was enviable.

These islanders lived the gentle breezes of their lands and had gentle spirits to match them.

My ship’s cabin attendant was from St. Vincent and was one of my best models of the Caribbean spirit. When I had several frustrations on the ship, she was a voice of reason and optimism. She helped me focus on the beauty of the land and people I was seeing and let go the problems on board.

The islands I saw looked poor, yet the people looked happy and relaxed. I believe that their stress free approach to life creates that.

No one was in a rush. Where I live, everyone is in a rush!

My guides also said that rum was a favorite part of their lives and a big stress reliever.

Since I don’t drink, rum is not an option for me to destress. I have other activities, though, which can be my “rum”. When I was bored on the ship, I did Zumba dance classes on YouTube. It was my version of a “rum rock out!”

When I left the Caribbean, I brought souvenirs home in my suitcase. More importantly, I took home a peaceful heart and a more let-go attitude–thanks to my Caribbean teachers.

In the wise words of Bob Marley, “Don’t worry about a thing, every little thing is gonna be alright.”

Jennifer K. Jordan

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Image Reference – Photo taken by Jennifer K. Jordan