The little-known secrets to eliminate stress and anxiety naturally.
The little-known secrets to eliminate stress and anxiety naturally.
Table of Contents
Tip 1: Exercise, Exercise, Exercise
Tip 2: Call a Friend for Support
Tip 3: Take Some Quiet Time
Tip 4: Practice Positive Self Talk
Tip 5: Eat Healthy Foods
Do you wake up in the morning, look at the day ahead, and feel stressed before it even begins? Or do you start your day relaxed, but by mid-morning your neck muscles are tight and you are fighting a stress headache? Or maybe your lower back is bothering you and you are snapping at your children or your co-workers, all because you are stressed.
Many serious health issues are rooted in or exasperated by stress. Some of these issues include the following:
Loss of interest in sex
High blood pressure
Wise people learn to manage their stress on a daily, ongoing basis. A little planning to incorporate some stress alleviating practices can
make a huge difference in the level of stress your body endures throughout the day. Simple changes in your regular routine, simple additions to your schedule, and simple changes in your mental approach to life can reap huge benefits for your emotional well-being, for your body and for your mind.
Simple practices take time to become habits, but each day they are practiced can make a difference. Good health follows good habits.
Today you can make a difference in your stress level. Today is the day to make the conscious effort to take care of yourself in this very important way. Your body will thank you. Your family will benefit. And your co-workers will work better with you.
Tip 1: Exercise
Exercise seems to be on every list for how to take care of one’s body and emotions. Regular exercise reaps amazing benefits in so many ways, including managing stress.
Exercise actually changes the hormonal levels in your body. When under stress, your body produces fight-or-flight hormones, epinephrine and norepinephrine. Your heart beats faster, your breathing is faster, and your muscles tense as the sympathetic nervous system is activated. You are ready to go into action to address the stressor.
Stress also elevates the hormone cortisol. This potent hormone causes the cells of your body to demand sugar or other carbohydrates, not a setup for the good health you desire.
Through a complex biochemical process, exercise releases chemicals called endorphins which cause a “euphoric” feeling. You feel better. You feel energized and happier. You experience a lessening of those negative feelings of anxiety and depression.
When facing a stressful day, find a way to incorporate a period of exercise. Get creative. Fifteen minutes can change your day. Thirty
minutes every day can change your life. Consider the following possibilities:
Walk, preferably outdoors if weather permits
Do aerobic exercise to a DVD.
Participate in an exercise class to add a positive social component.
Bike outdoors, if possible, or indoors on a stationary bike.
Use a treadmill.
Lift free weights. Use resistance bands.
Climb stairs if you are limited to the workplace.
Walk laps at a rest stop if you are travelling.
Look for an opportunity to add in a period of exercise to reduce your stress no matter where your stressful day takes place.
TipTipTip 2: Call a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a FriendCall a Friend for Supportfor Supportfor Supportfor Supportfor Supportfor Supportfor Supportfor Supportfor Supportfor Supportfor Support
Social contact can reduce stress. Sometimes verbalizing a problem or stressful situation can lessen its impact. A burden shared is a burden less heavy. The principle behind meeting with a counselor is that talking through a problem offers a way to dismantle it and its negative effects.
Many times you can talk with a good friend and achieve a similar release of that stressful tension. A friend who will help alleviate stress is one who is a good listener. This person will reflect back to you what he or she is hearing. He or she will not try to fix the situation but will invest time to try to understand what is going on. This kind of friend does not judge; hearing judgment would add to your stress load.
This friend will not only listen to the circumstances eliciting your stress but will tune into your emotions. This person will reassure you and offer understanding and support. This friend is safe.
On the other hand, avoid sharing with someone whom you can anticipate will pull you down emotionally. The goal is to eliminate stress, not add to it.
Choosing friends who are themselves healthy emotionally and have the skills to listen well is wise. These friends can give you the support you need when stress feels overwhelming. Of course, being that kind of a friend to others is also important.
TipTipTip 3: Take Some Take Some Take Some Take Some Take Some Take Some Take Some Take Some Take Some Take Some Quiet TimeQuiet TimeQuiet TimeQuiet Time Quiet TimeQuiet TimeQuiet TimeQuiet TimeQuiet Time
In this fast-paced world, quiet time is in short supply. We are constantly bombarded by phones, internet contacts through email and social media, advertising, background music, traffic, machines, and more. Even when not in use a cell phone alerts us to new messages.
Make a space in the hectic flow of life to be still. It can make the difference between having you succumb to stress or relax in peace. Normally you will have to seek this out.
You can deliberately create a time of quiet by implementing one of the following choices:
Turn off your cell phone.
Leave the computer; walk away from it.
Go to a room with comfortable furniture and relax there.
Ignore the time. Don’t look at your watch. Take if off if necessary.
Go outside. Breathe some fresh air. Enjoy the sunshine. Look at the sky. Focus on beautiful things.
Close your eyes. Even in a hectic day you can sit back and close your eyes for a few minutes. Maybe you have to go to your car or
to a private area, but make the effort. Breathe deeply and enjoy the quiet.
Your body was not designed to run constantly without rest and quiet. You need refreshment. You need to relax.
Don’t wait until you are overwhelmed with stress to think about how to incorporate a quiet time. Plan a daily rhythm which incorporates a time of quiet rest. Meditate. Reflect. Breathe deeply.
Unexpected benefits may come from times of quiet retreat. Creative solutions to problems may pop into your mind. Your relationships may improve as you care for yourself in this way.
Daily rhythms of quiet and rest are important, but weekly rhythms of rest and quiet also add to a balanced life with reduced stress. Our bodies suffer when they are pushed to the maximum day after day with no breaks. Designate one day a week to set aside the cares of the workplace, home, relationships, and whatever else is stress inducing. It can make a huge difference in your ability to cope with stress on a daily basis.
Tip 4:Tip 4:Tip 4:Tip 4:Tip 4:Tip 4: Practice Practice Practice Practice Practice Practice Practice Practice Practice Positive SelfPositive SelfPositive SelfPositive SelfPositive SelfPositive SelfPositive Self Positive SelfPositive SelfPositive SelfPositive SelfPositive Self-TalkTalkTalkTalk
Thoughts are constantly going through your mind even when you are not focusing on what you are thinking. You think about what you are doing, where you are going, what is going to happen.
You also comment in your mind on those thoughts. You speak to yourself about your own condition. Your own words can build you up or tear you down – your very own words that you are saying to yourself in your own mind.
Negative self-talk is destructive and compounds your stress. Some examples of negative self-talk are as follows:
I am such a dummy.
I can’t do anything right.
This task is hopeless.
It’s too much for me to get done.
No one ever helps me out.
That person is such a jerk. I can’t work with him.
My boss gives me too much work.
I hate my job.
The room may be totally quiet but the conversation going on in your mind may be stressing you. You can change that.
Replace negative self-talk with positive self-talk. This is a huge step toward reducing stress. Consider the following:
I have never done this before, but I am an intelligent person and can figure it out.
This is a huge task, but if I break it down into smaller pieces, I will be able to do it well.
If it looks like I can’t do this alone, I can ask for help. Others want me to succeed.
My boss has a lot on his plate, too. His stress is spilling over to me, but I understand what is going on and will not take it personally. I will do my best and try to support him as well as I can.
This may not be my ideal job, but there are parts of it that I enjoy. I feel a sense of accomplishment for parts of it, too.
Be aware of your own self-talk; this is the first step to changing it. What exactly are you saying to yourself?
Are the negative words playing in your mind true or not? Sometimes these negative messages were created in your past. You say them over and over as if they were true. Identify messages that are not true. Even if you don’t know where the false message originated, identify it as not true.
False messages shape your perception of reality. They rob you of hope, energy and joy.
Identifying and rejecting false messages gives you the space to replace these false messages with what is true and uplifting. This one concept, replacing false messages with the truth, can be life changing in multiple ways including reducing your stress.
Tip 5:Tip 5:Tip 5:Tip 5:Tip 5:Tip 5: Eat HealthyEat Healthy Eat HealthyEat HealthyEat HealthyEat HealthyEat HealthyEat HealthyEat HealthyEat Healthy FoodsFoodsFoodsFoodsFoods
Food choices have a huge effect on your stress level. Foods can have a depleting, de-energizing effect on your body. Long term, foods that do not provide necessary nutrition will set you up for disease. Even in its early undiagnosed stage, disease is a tremendous stressor.
Sugar is a huge culprit for actually de-energizing you. Sugar causes your insulin to spike, then drop. Your energy levels will drop, too. The stress hormone, cortisol, may cause sugar cravings, but yielding to these cravings and eating sweets will hurt you.
Caffeine is another depleting food component. Caffeine exacerbates stress by causing jitters and nervousness. It can also increase your appetite which may prompt you to eat sugar, particularly between meals.
Meals of protein, complex carbohydrate and healthy fats support health and resistance to stress. Eat vegetables and fruits, about twice as many vegetables as fruits.
Avoid high carbohydrate snacks. Mid-meal choices that will support your body could be protein/complex carbohydrate/healthy fat options such as nuts and seeds. Avoid simple carbohydrate options such as donuts and cookies, desserts, candy and all other sugar-laden foods. Even fruit sugar, fructose, should be consumed with protein and fat to avoid the insulin spike and drop.
Drinking plenty of water also gives your body what it needs to be in balance and deal well with stress. The recommended amount of water is at least half one’s body weight in ounces; if someone weighs 150 pounds, then 75 ounces of pure water per day will help to flush out toxins that contribute to poor health and are adding a stressor to your body.
Making good food choices on a stressful day will support your body to deal with the stressors both short-term and long-term. You will support your body in the moment but also build for future health.
Reducing your stress today and every day is an important component to good health and well-being. This cannot be overemphasized.
A good start is to plan your day with a period of exercise to balance your hormones and set yourself up for managing the stress that comes your way. At home or at work, there are creative ways to move your body that will have the desired effect. Exercise rebalances your hormones in a way that will promote health. You will also enjoy the euphoria that comes from exercise.
Calling a friend who will listen appropriately is a great way to reduce stress. Handling stressful situations alone is not necessary. Reaching out for support in stressful times makes it much easier to deal with the stressor.
Incorporate a period of quiet into a stressful day. Take a break from constant noise and demands to be refreshed. Make periods of quiet a part of your daily and weekly routines.
Speak positively to yourself. Become aware of the negative messages that you rehearse in your mind, particularly when you are under stress. Capture those harmful messages, recognize them for what they are and replace them with positive self-talk.
Support your body through stressful times by eating foods that promote health. Drink plenty of water. Foods can deplete your energy
or support your energy. Don’t try to deal with stress without giving your body the resources it needs to function best.
Incorporate these simple practices into your day to deal with the inevitable stressors which will come your way. Care for yourself. You are worth it.
If you really feel as if you require expert or alternative help and support for your stress management efforts, you can seek therapies and services such as:
Hypnotherapy, Kinesiology, Reiki, Reflexology, Massage, Counselling etc.
Remember – You are worth it, so take care of yourself.
Vitality Success Consultant
New Dimension Vitality
0420 825 400