Happy Friday my friends!
Stress…It can be a good thing…but when it becomes a daily thing it can become dangerous to your health. Chronic stress can lead to numerous health problems including stress on your heart and blood vessels, anxiety, and even weight gain (and making it harder to lose weight).
Sometimes stress is just going to happen, but for the most part I believe that you can prevent stress…and you know I’m all about preventable health.
Here are 7 ways to stop stress:
- Stop multi-tasking: technically our brains can’t multitask (although I tell my husband that I’m excellent at multi-tasking lol). Multi-tasking too much can make you feel even more stressed and “fried”. Focus on one thing and one thing only. Put your phone on Do Not Disturb, put on headphones or music that helps you concentrate. (studies have shown that music…usually one that doesn’t make you want to sing and dance…helps you concentrate)
- Stop checking social media and watching the news: 86% of Americans say they constantly or often check their email, texts or social media accounts, according to the latest Stress in America Survey. The more often check your phone or watch the news, the more stress is caused. Set up 2 times a day when you block out time just to check your email, texts and social media. I mention the news in with this as well because if you tend to get stressed out when listening to the news stories about nuclear warfare or a total blackout then stop watching the news until you can get your stress under control.
- Limit your choices: making decisions can be stressful and we are all faced with decisions that we HAVE to make each day, but if you can limit how many decisions you make, it will lighten your stress load. Have a limited amount of clothes and shoes that you wear making it easy to just grab an outfit and go. Cook the same foods each week instead of stressing out about trying to incorporate too many new foods or meals (unless cooking is a stress-relieving outlet for you). Tell your significant other or friends to pick the restaurant.
- Stop overthinking: Let things go that happened in the past. Don’t think of what can go wrong and instead think of what can go right. Instead of making a mountain out of a molehill, ask yourself how much it will really matter in a year or two years or even five years.
- Dream a little dream: daydreaming is a good opportunity to let your brain rest and recover from daily stresses. (here’s a great article that shows the health benefits of daydreaming)
- Meditate: Take just 10 minutes a day to sit still, focus on your breathing, visualize and image or stare at an object to keep your thoughts from drifting. There are lots of great meditation apps out there…or even just focusing on your yoga practice can be a healthy form of meditation. If you don’t have 10 minutes to meditate but you find yourself getting stressed out when at work just go to www.donothingfor2minutes.com and listen to the calming sound of the ocean and don’t touch your mouse or keyboard for 2 minutes otherwise the timer starts over again. As a beach lover this is one of my favorite things to do when I’m working on the computer and I find myself getting stressed out.
- Get Spiritual: Whether it’s regularly attending religious services, yoga meditation sessions or quiet walks in the woods, a spiritual practice can be a powerfully effective means of coping with your stress.
One of my favorite quotes that a friend told me years ago is:
“Worrying is like sitting in a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but gets you nowhere.”
I tell this quote to so many of my friends, family and clients who find themselves stressing out or worrying over everything.
Do you get stressed out easily? What are your top tips for managing your stress?
Stay Healthy my Friends!
Carrie A Groff