3 Top Ways to Reduce Stress
Stress is an inevitable part of life and something we all experience from time to time. The key is to make sure our stress doesn’t become chronic and impact our health. Some stress is good for us as it keeps us from danger or pushes us to do something that we really want to do, in the form of excitement - our bodies respond the same way.
Prolong stress can lead to inflammation throughout the body and lead to illness, decreased immunity and poor sleep. It can also lead to headaches, weight gain, digestive issues, anxiety and depression, poor memory and concentration and a lack of motivation.
Building up your stress tolerance helps when in a stressful situation.
Be self aware – note when you are starting to feel stress and what your bodies reaction is. Identify where you are holding tension,
Evaluate priorities – if you feel you are starting to feel overwhelmed and can feel stress creeping in, look at what is going on for you. Is it that you have too much to do? Look at what you need to prioritise and what can wait till later.
Don’t get carried away – emotions can take over. Check in with yourself to see if you reaction is warranted or if you are over reacting to the situation – take a few breaths and see how it looks.
Write a to do list and focus on one thing at a time. Having too much to do is overwhelming, breaking it down helps take the stress out of it.
Take time out – being busy all the time increases your stress levels and lowers your stress tolerance – you need to make time to relax and recharge.
The top 3 ways to reduce stress are:
#1 – Mindset
A positive mindset helps you deal with your stress, knowing that you have the power to make positive changes in your life and adopting the mindset that you can get through any challenges that come your way really helps reduce your reaction to stressors as they come up. If your mindset is that you cannot cope and everything is too hard then that is what you will go to when faced with a challenge. Positivity in the face of adversity will help reduce your bodies stress response.
To improve your mindset, affirmation can be great. You could try these.
I will not focus on things I can not control
I have the power to make positive changes in my life
I am capable of getting through tough times
I am strong and resilient
I am doing my very best
I choose to take breaks and focus on self care today
#2 – Sleep
Getting adequate and restful sleep is essential to many body process including help us cope better with stress. If you haven’t slept well and a stressful situation arises it won’t be easy to deal with if you are tired.
Practice good sleep hygiene:
Have a consistent routine – same bedtime and wakeup time each day
Avoid taking long naps – if you are tired, have a 30-minute nap in the early afternoon to recharge.
Dim the lights in the evening – have a lamp.
Don’t toss and turn, if after 20 minutes you can’t sleep get up, read in low light, do some light yoga or breathing exercises.
Get some sunshine
Avoid caffeine and alcohol
Stay off your devices 30 to 60 minutes before bed.
#3 – Self Care
Self care isn’t just about mindfulness and meditation, it is looking after yourself. You need to take
time our to rest and recharge. Eating well, exercising regularly, hydrating, minimise toxins in your life (what you use to clean, wash your clothes and products you use on your body) and avoiding the use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs to cope with stress. Maintain good relationships with friends and family (even if virtually), read, practising relaxation, gratefulness, get out into nature and get a little sunshine every day. Make time for activities and hobbies regularly. Laugh, dance and don’t forget to have fun. Self care is simply doing something that you love, just for you. Make time for it.
For more ways to manage your stress book a discovery call with me today.