Stress can wear you down, affect how you work, think, live and can have negative effects on your overall health. It is also considered one of the most common deterrents to weight loss. Yes, stress can stop you from losing weight!
Stress is always present, and some stress is good, but it is how you manage your stress that counts, and here are some tips for managing the stress in your life. Click link for research on how stress effects the brain used for reference
Acknowledge your stress. As we said before, it can be a good thing. The body’s fight or flight response occurs naturally and it can give you a boost of needed energy at just the right time.
Exercise. Sounds simple, but it is true that exercise is an excellent way to relieve physical and mental stress.
Get rid of negativity. By getting the negativity out of your life, and disassociating yourself from those who breed a negative environment, you take a step toward losing your stress. Click link causes of stress research used as reference
Know your limits, and accept them. The latter being much harder to do than the former, recognize that there is always something else that needs attention. Learn to pace yourself and create balance in your life. It will make you consistently more effective in every aspect of your life.
Practice slow, deep breathing. It is true that you can trick the mind into relaxing the body by spending a few minutes a day closing your eyes and performing deep breathing exercises.
Other factors to keep in mind are poor diet, lack of sleep, and lack of exercise. Create an awareness of your life’s stress factors and be accepting rather than dismissive. These important tips can help you create and maintain a less stressful environment to live in.
Stress Management 101
Stress management is a hot topic in our society. There are many books, tapes, and CDs on stress management. There are numerous workshops, classes, and seminars addressing the topic of stress. The internet is full of information as well. With multiple options, one can get stressed out just trying to make sense of it all! Clink link for info from preventive stress research use for reference
How do you make sense of all this information? Does having less stress help me stay fit and healthy? Does managing stress help me get in touch with my inner athlete? This article aims to cover these very questions.
Making sense of all the information begins with the basics. Many things can cause stress. All stress is not bad; in fact, a certain amount of stress is healthy. Chronic and constant stress is the problem. Chronic stress is associated with physical health problems as well as mental health problems.
Stress symptoms include difficulty sleeping, upset stomach, constipation, diarrhea, frequent headaches, changes in appetite, panic attacks, anger, sadness, depression, anxiety, irritability, decreased energy and concentration, and weight changes. Medical diseases related to excess stress are heart problems, high blood pressure, irritable bowel syndrome, neck/back pain, and diabetes. So clearly decreasing stress will help you stay healthy. Consult a physician if you are concerned about these health problems. Click link for book on stress management used as reference
How can I manage stress more effectively is the next question? First, identify what causes you stress. Once you know what triggers you, you can stress to make some changes in that area of your life. Find out what helps you relax. Is it a massage, a good book, yoga, or pumping weights at the gym? Whatever it is, start a self-honoring practice of indulging in that form of relaxation as often as you can. Reward yourself by taking care of your needs. Making time for yourself, at least 15 minutes a day, is key, so consider it a doctor’s order.
Getting plenty of sleep is important. It allows your body and mind to repair and rejuvenate. Some people report having trouble turning off their mind at night when trying to go to sleep. Here is a simple deep breathing/relaxation technique that you can use to help you get to sleep quickly.
Lying in bed, rest your hands on your abdominal area. Inhale slowly to the count of four and hold it for a second. Exhale slowly to the count of four. Feel the rise and fall of your abdomen. Repeat this process until you drift off to sleep each time trying to extend the count you inhale and exhale. If your mind starts to race, gently bring your focus back to your breath and begin again.
Exercise is an excellent way to manage stress. Physical activity releases endorphins that improve your mood and decrease stress. Talk with the Live online trainers to figure out how to fit fitness into your lifestyle. Eating plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and proteins will help decrease your stress too.
Journaling, taking up a hobby, and spending time with friends are other ways to manage your stress. Planning your time and schedule each day helps decrease stress as well. Setting limits and boundaries also help manage stress. Lastly, avoid dealing with stress in unhealthy ways like using alcohol, drugs, smoking or overeating. Implementing just a few of these stress management techniques will put you steps closer to achieving your health and fitness goals!
Lower Stress While Driving
Have you ever noticed how stressed you get behind the wheel of a car. We get upset when the person in front of us is driving to slow, traffic is backed up, a car cuts us off, or wishing the kids in the back would settle down. As we know stress causes many of the health problems we face today. Just think how a reduction in your stress while driving will make you healthier, especially when you think how many times we drive everyday. Click link for study on stress while driving used as reference
If you live in an area similar to my parents in South Dakota you may be thinking to yourself what stress while driving. This article is for the rest of the world that has to deal with traffic, road construction, and more learner permit drivers than we know what to do with. The average person spends 1.5 hours a day behind the wheel of a car. Since we are not going to being spending this time exercising we can learn to lower our stress and improve our health while we drive.
The first secret to lower your stress while driving is to identify what cause you stress while behind the wheel. Most people have some daily event that causes their stress levels to rise. For some it is when they are stuck in traffic, getting cut off, changing lanes, or bad weather. These stresses are usually caused by fear that you may not be aware of. For instance when you hit gridlock in traffic is it really the traffic that upsets you or the fact that you are going to be late. You may find though you get upset at the traffic that it is really an underlining issue that causes your stress. The more you understand what causes you stress behind the wheel the better you can make a better choice to distress while driving.
I used to train a psychiatrist who talked about that one of the most common symptoms she would treat was road anxiety. She helped these people by having them eat a candy bar on their way home from work when they were the most stressed. What she didn’t know was that the reason people are so irritable on the way home from work comes a lack of proper eating habits. You body wants 5 small meals a day when it doesn’t get it your body finds unhealthy ways to get energy. In the case of our rush hour drivers, because they typically eat 3 meals or less, they have low blood sugar while driving home which causes them to be quickly go to anxiety and rage. You will find as your blood sugar is stable from eating throughout the day, your stress levels reduce substantially.
Tips for Better Stress Free Driving
- Start your trip earlier: It will always take longer than you think to get some where, especially if you live in a big city. Most people’s stress rises because they didn’t give themselves enough time reach their destination if things don’t go perfectly. If you start early than you won’t be as bothered when traffic situations happen.
- Relax while driving: Use the time while driving to unwind and reflect about your day. If you have a lengthy commute home spend the time being alone with yourself instead of racing to get home as fast as you can to only have plenty of stuff do once you get their. You have an opportunity to take a few minutes out of the rat race while you drive home.
- Be courteous: We all hate it when someone cuts us off though I can’t throw the first stone from never cutting people off myself. A person once told me that how would you feel if that person was rushing a dying person to the hospital and that if they make it on time the person would survive. Every time I see a person driving dangerously I wish them well and hope that their need to drive fast has benefit for them. This works the same during accidents which if you live in Phoenix is an everyday occurrence. What calms me down is I truly hope the people are ok. Though I don’t like traffic slowing down, I don’t people hurt either. I find I lose my anger when I think of the poor people who are having it worse than my delay home.