Five Simple Stress Management Techniques
The baby's wailing, the phone's ringing, your oldest child is crying and you can't find your purse. Sounds familiar? If you had a second to breathe, you'd realize your chest is tight, your heart is racing, and your mind is so scattered you can barely remember your own name let alone where you put your purse. That's the sign that your stress level has reached its maximum.
Well you've reached your upper limit of stress, try these five simple stress management techniques. While they may not work perfectly every time and every place, they can do quite a lot to minimize the stress in your life.
1. Choose Healthy, Raw, Vegan Foods
Since you're reading this article on a raw, vegan and living foods website, it's a good bet that you're interested in healthy foods and healthy living. But when you're under stress, you may be sorely tempted to reach for your old trigger foods, those so-called comfort foods. Sugar, fat and calorie laden cooked foods do nothing to reduce stress. They add to your over-burdened body's chemical load and set you back.
Instead of reaching for something that sounds comforting, reach for nutrition. When you are under stress, your body has a tougher time using nutrients and may use some more rapidly than others to cope with stressors and stress-release chemicals. Choose nurturing foods and include plenty of green smoothies for extra nutritional support. A cup of chamomile tea helps you wind down after a bad day too, without adding to your body's overloaded system.
When you're under stress, you may find yourself taking short, quick breaths, or breathing from the upper chest rather than deep, cleansing breaths. As you feel yourself tighten up with stress, just breathe. Take a deep, slow breath. Hold it for five counts and release it for five counts. Do it again. The more stress you are under, the more you need to take time to just breathe.
Walk, or run, or bike, or jog, or go for an invigorating game of tennis. Whatever activity makes you feel better, schedule it in. If you're at work and can't get out for an organized exercise break, take five minutes and walk around the block. It will clear you head, burn off some energy, and help you feel more centered and in control.
Sharing your feelings can help. Talk to a friend or coworker about what is bothering you. If you don't want to share it directly, write it down in your journal. Get those feelings out on paper. If you believe in a Higher Power, turning your stressful burdens over to your higher power, as you define him or her, can also relieve stress.
Some people add to their own stress levels by failing to plan for their day. Try taking a few simple steps to organize yourself for the next day so you won't feel rushed or pressured. Get up early in the morning, with enough time to do what you need to before heading out to work. Leave a little extra time in your commute, especially if you have to be someplace by a certain hour. This way if traffic is in a mess you won't fret – you've left enough time to deal with it. Lay out your clothes the night before so your outfit is waiting and all you have to do is shower, dress and leave. Create a 'launch pad' area in the house where you leave your briefcase, purse, and the children's back packs all set for the next day. Just grab and go. Blend a batch of green smoothie in the evening and fill your container with it so you have a handy breakfast waiting. Taking all these little steps helps you feel more organized and less at the mercy of others' needs.
These are five out of many possible steps you can take to relieve stress. Be good to yourself. Reduce or eliminate as much stress from your life as possible.
Written by: Jeanne Grunert
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These statements have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration. The preceding information and/or products are for educational purposes only and are not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness. Please consult your doctor before making any changes or before starting ANY exercise or nutritional supplement program or before using this information or any product during pregnancy or if you have a serious medical condition.