What if you could find a way to reduce your stress? Imagine how much better you would feel! Read on for 9 easy ways to get rid of stress.
What is stress
Stress. We all have it. Some more than others. Before we can manage it, we have to know what it is and where it came from.
There are 3 main types of stress.
- Acute Stress. This is the stress almost everyone has regularly. It is a short-term stress. Emotionally, we see it in the form of anger, depression, and/or anxiety. We will feel this in our bodies in the way of back pain, jaw pain, headaches. Stomach pain in the form of IBS, constipation, diarrhea, or heartburn. Or transient in the form of sweaty palms, or high blood pressure.
- Episodic Acute Stress. This is the stress that most type A personalities or “worry warts” feel. They are usually always on edge, have persistent headaches, hypertension, heart pain. These people have a harder time reducing their stress because it is such an ingrained part of their personalities. In order to reduce this stress, intervention is usually needed in the form of therapy or medication.
- Chronic Stress. This is the worst form of stress. It is brought on when someone is in a miserable situation for a long period of time and can’t see a way out. Such as the stress of poverty, dysfunctional family situations, being trapped in an unhappy marriage or a job you hate. The worst part is, most people in these situations get used to this form of stress and almost forget it’s there. If it remains ongoing, it could lead to heart attack, stroke, violence, suicide, or cancer.
How stress affects our bodies
Stress can affect you in so many ways and sometimes we may not even realize it. If you suffer from any of these symptoms, make note of them and see if they arise during stressful situations.
- Crave sugar or fat
- Increased belly fat due to increased cortisol levels
- Problems with your memory
- Hair loss
- Increased blood sugar levels
- Increased blood pressure
- Skin conditions such as psoriasis
- Decreased immune system
9 easy ways to get rid of stress
- Exercise. I know, I know. When you’re stressed, trying to fit in time to exercise can feel like you’re adding to the stress. But find a way to fit it in. Even if it’s just a quick walk around the block at lunchtime. It helps to reduce cortisol levels and increases endorphins. All of which reduces the effects of stress on your body.
- Diet. No, I don’t mean you have to diet. I mean, consume healthy foods and manage stress through your diet. Limit your amount of sugar intake. Drink lots of water. Eat your fruits and veggies. It really does make a difference.
- Therapy. Sometimes just being able to talk to someone who is unbiased so you can get things off your chest will make all the difference in the world.
- Be Organized. I don’t know about you, but when my life feels organized, I feel like I’m more in control. And that reduces my stress, big time.
- Meditation. Studies have shown that meditation can help to reduce those feelings of stress. I know when I need to quickly calm down, just taking deep breaths can do the trick.
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol. I gotta admit. This is a tough one for me. But one I’m willing to try if it helps reduce my stress level. I love my coffee and my occasional glass of wine….
- Limit cell phone and internet use. I love this one, I really do. We are definitely on our phones and computers way too much. By putting down the technology, we are forced to look inside ourselves. We are forced to find other things to do. Just like the good ole days 🙂
- Keep a journal. I’m starting one this week. I don’t really know what I’m going to put in it just yet. But I want to see if I notice any patterns in my eating habits and how I was feeling that day. I’m an emotional eater and I need to really focus on what my triggers are.
- Find ways to relax. We all know ways to relax, we just rarely take the time to do it. Take that hot bath, schedule a massage…. You deserve it.
You might also like my blog post Laughter; Increase the quality of your life. Laughter is a great way to reduce stress 🙂
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