5 tips to managing stress:
"All the suffering, stress, and addiction comes from not realizing you already are what you are looking for."
Avoiding unnecessary stress
Not all stress can be avoided, and it's not healthy to avoid a situation that needs to be addressed. You may be surprised, however, by the number of stressorsin your life that you can reduce.
- Learn to say "NO - Know your limits and stick to them, whether in your personal or professional life. Taking on more than you can handle is a surefire recipe for stress.
- Take Control of Your Environment - If the evening news makes you anxious, turn off the TV or cell phone. If traffic's got you tense, take a longer but less traveled route.
- Unplug - We have become so addicted to technology and social media that we don't often realize we have a choice to turn off our cell phones, computers and tablets. Step AWAY from devices and recharge.
Adjust Your Attitude and Expectations
If you can't change the stressor, change yourself.
- Reframe the Problem - Try to view a stressful situaton from a different perspective . Rather than being upset about the traffic jam, look at it as an oppurtunity to listen to your favorite music.
- Focus on the Big Picture - Get a perspective on the situation. Ask yourself how important this issue is in the long run. Is it worth getting upset over? If your anwer is no, it frees you up to focus your energy and attention elsewhere.
- Adjust your standards - Perfectionism is a major source of stress. Stop setting yourself up by demanding perfection of yourself and others. Adopt the "Good Enough" mantra.
- Focus on the Positive - When stress is getting you down, take a moment to reflect on all the things you appreciate in your life, including your own positive gifts and qualities. This sumple shift can help you keep things in perspective
Adopt A Healthy Lifestyle
Physical activity plays a key role in reducing and preventing the effects of stress. Even gentle excercise such as stretching and yoga can reduce stress.
- Eat a Healthy Diet - Well nourushed bodies are better prepared to cope with stress, so be mindful of what you eat. Start your day right with breakfast, keep your energy up and your mind clear with balanced nutritious meals throughout the day.
- Reduce Caffeine and Sugar - The temporary "highs" caffeine and sugar provide often end with a crash in mood and energy. By reducing the amount of coffee, soft drinks, chocolate and sugar snacks in your diet, you'll feel more relaxed and sleep better.
- Get Enough Sleep - Adequate sleep fuels your mind, as well as your body. Feeling tired will increase your stress because it can cause you to think irrationally.
- Take a few minutes every day to do something that revitalites you - Even taking a few moments to stretch or doing some deep breathing can help you with a feeling of well being and feeling energized. There is scientific evidence that even mild exercise like yoga and stretching can change our brain waves and leave us with a feeling of peace and relaxation
What Helps You in Times of Stress?
Grab a piece of paper and a pen and write down the things you enjoy doing to help relax. Be sure to go back and reference those when you feel your stress levels rise.
**Adapted from Healthguide.org