Tips On Managing Stress
Below are a number of tips that can help you. These tips are not meant to be a whole approach to stress management, just a few small ways to help enhance your ability to deal with stress.
#1. Get enough rest/sleep. This is so important. many people under stress do not get enough rest and then become drained of their energy and capabilities to effectively deal with stress. THis cannot be over-emphasized-get more rest. If you need help there are many different approaches. Please inquire on the submission form if you need any assistance.
#2. Exercise at least 3x/week. Keep the body moving. Exercise does not cure stress. It just helps us take care of ourselves better and helps to even out any effects that stress may have on us. Some people do find that exercise really helps their mood and mental clarity.
#3. Avoid alcohol, drugs, caffeine, nicotine and anything that alters your energy or mental capability.
You need to be at your best and using alcohol, drugs, caffeine or nicotine for a short term fix does not help in the long run. It can be difficult quitting but there are ways to reduce and eliminate these habits and replace them with items that will be of benefit in the long run.
#4. Eat healthy. Lots of fruits, vegetables and whole grains should be the core of a good, healthy diet. Avoid processed foods and sugar. Our diet has such an impact on our total health: physical, mental and emotional. Be aware of what you put into your body and how it can affect you, especially in the long run.
#5. Take conscious relaxation/down time. Try 20-30 minutes daily if possible. Not sitting front of the TV or PC. Make a habit of either sitting or lying down and allowing yourself to relax,physically, mentally and emotionally. Just being with yourself and letting go of tension, worries and fears.
#6. Get organized. Sometimes just getting organized can help to put things in perspective. Get yourself organized in all aspects of your life: work, home, relationship/family, spirituality and so on. Learn to prioritize, be responsible for getting important tasks done and letting go of unimportant and time-wasting activities and tasks. Focus on what is truly important in your life.
Mornings - Start the day in a relaxed mode. How do I do this?
Breathe - Yes breathe-in a slow, calming, relaxing way. Remind yourself to check in with your breathing throughout the day and take a minute each time for several slow, relaxing breaths.
Body - check in to see if you are holding tension in any part of the body. Do a short scan of the body and notice any areas of tension. Allow relaxation into these areas.
Mind - Where is my mind? What is it focusing on? What are the "stories" my mind is telling me about my current situation that is causing me stress? What endless loop of worry keeps arising in my mind? Just start to notice how the mind works and what issue continually arises. Any time I am feeling stress, check in to what the mind is doing.
Emotions - Tune into your emotions any time you are feeling tense. What is happening on the emotional level? WHat are you feeling? Where in the body do you feel it? What is going on in your mind at the time you are feeling tense? Start to make the connection between thoughts and emotions.
Evening - Letting go of the day, clearing out the mind, allowing the body to relax, allowing the emotions to settle down. Make a practice each evening to just let go of the day...it is done and over. There are a lot of ways to do this: body scan, relaxation exercises, guided meditations and visualizations, journaling and so on. Find a method that works for you.