Do you realize we live our lives much differently than people did 20 or 30 years ago? Yep, life has changed and with it our stress levels. Even though we are constantly developing new technological to make life simpler, we are also carrying the burden of being alert and accessible 24/7.
So while we have everything at our fingertips now, from ‘track my friends’ to weather apps, we have very little down time. You open your laptop or smartphone and the whole world is at your disposal. Unfortunately, it is a 2-way street which means that just as you can get in touch with anyone at anytime, they can also find you wherever you are and whenever they please. This keeps us constantly “on”. We are constantly engaged and have very little time to destress or relax. As a result, we become overworked and stress-related tension builds.
This is why nearly 80% of all doctor visits are stress-related.
While some stress response is good for you, having it all the time leads to major physical, psychological and emotional problems.
Medical experts are calling it “Chronic Stress Syndrome” with the following symptoms:
Honestly we all suffer from one, or a combination, of these symptoms or know someone that does. And since stress does not look like its going to end anytime soon, its up to us to learn healthy ways to manage and lower stress levels. Here are 5 natural ways to alleviate tension and stress you can put into motion today:
1. Eat right.
What you eat is more important than you think! Foods high in magnesium, calcium, vitamin B-12, fiber and omega-3 fatty acids all help uplift the mood, protect the heart and boost brain power. Avoid foods rich in processed sugars and fats, all carbonated sodas and baked goods. Also too much caffeine and alcohol will increase anxiety, fatigue and inflammations.
Meditation has been used for centuries as a way to calm the nerves and become in tune with your inner self. And the best part is that it can be done anywhere and at any time. Pick a quiet corner in your home, sit in a comfortable chair and focus your attention on your breathing for 5 - 10 minutes. To enhance your meditation, you can use essential oils, burn incense or listen to nature sounds. I have guided mediations free on Youtube and my site to also assist you as well as online and live meditation classes.
Getting regular exercise is a natural stress-buster because your body releases endorphins; feel-good hormones in the brain which lift your mood as well as act as natural pain killers. Your blood sugar levels and metabolism are boosted, helping you eat less and burn more calories at the same time. Exercise also regulates your sleep cycle, what experts refer to as your circadian rhythm, so you get quality sleep and wake up early, energized and ready to start the day.
Want to double the benefits? Exercise outdoors, preferably where you are surrounded by nature. Studies have proven that getting direct sunshine stimulates the release of endorphins, the feel-good chemicals. Add to that the soothing effect nature has on you, and your mood is sure to soar, decreasing levels of cortisol, the stress hormone.
4. Practice Mindfulness
To effectively manage stress and anxiety, you need to calm down your fear and panic responses and mindfulness practices can be key. Mindfulness means being present in the moment. Too often we are stressed because we are thinking about past events or stressing over the future. With mindfulness practice for stress and anxiety, you learn how to sit peacefully with your thoughts and feelings in the present moment, creating an inner calm. This will help contain and reduce stress and anxiety as you refocus on this very moment.
Make time to do something you enjoy. When you do, you are disconnecting from social media, slowing down and using your senses to take in everything in the present moment. This is also a great confidence booster, whether you like playing games or reading, or engaging in a hobby like painting, knitting, coloring or race-car driving. Play and have fun, just for the shear fun of it. Don’t try to create something to sell or give away, but create and play just for the experience.
Stress is unfortunately an integral part of our lives now. If it is left unmanaged it can lead to serious health problems. Luckily, with some patience and a few simple lifestyle changes, you can move from stressed and frazzled to a happy, well-balanced life.
If you want to learn more natural ways to alleviate tension and stress why not take a meditation class or book a relaxing energy session today. Let's discuss!
The practice of forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world.
Reiki Master Teacher,
"Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity."
“To teach is to learn twice.”
“Because you are alive, everything is possible.” ― Thích Nhất Hạnh
"The purpose of a spiritual teacher is not to tell you how to think, but to give you questions to think upon."
- Sarah Mercer
“Instructions for living a life.
Tell about it.”