Life is full of daily challenges: rush hour traffic, pressure on the job, family conflict, to name a few. Some of the situations that happen in our lives are unavoidable and it is up to us to figure out how to handle them as well as we can.
When we are overwhelmed and overloaded with multiple challenges, it is harder for us to bring our best to solving these difficulties. When we don’t have a consistent way to help ourselves reduce our level of internal stress even before facing these situations, we are much more likely to lose patience with our boss, yell at our spouse or get into a car accident.
Left unaddressed, our immune system can become compromised and before you know it, we can find ourselves in bed with a cold, migraine or back ache. The good news is that there are ways to avoid automatically being overwhelmed and stressed out. And while we cannot control the unexpected events in our lives, we can choose to protect ourselves from getting overwhelmed by them.
Begin 2018 right and try these Six Simple Stress-Reduction Strategies to keep stress at bay:
1. Put fuel into your body as you would in your gas tank
Eat three meals a day. Include fruits and green vegetables to increase energy and nutrient intake. Include modest amounts of protein-rich foods to keep your blood sugar stable and your concentration more steady. These food choices will keep your energy strong and can reduce unnecessary fatigue Drink plenty of water. It is essential for vibrant health and well-being.
2. Doing your best does not mean doing it all, just all you can do!
Set priorities: be realistic about how much you can do each day. Be smart; avoid the temptation to push through discomfort, know your own limits. Honor your body’s wisdom.
3. Remember: Time wisely spent means energy wisely conserved.
Work at a pace that feels engaging not exhausting. Determine the best time to schedule each task based upon how high your level of energy and focus is at different times, throughout your day. Know when to say “I’ve done enough and now it’s time to stop.”
4. Plan time for some breaks and avoid those mistakes
Take regular time out from thinking and planning, rest your mind and come back refreshed. When working on the computer for long periods of time, take frequent stretch breaks and move around. A 10 minute walk works wonders!
5. Practice deep, rhythmic breathing for effective stress release
Start by trying the three-part diaphragmatic breath. Allow yourself to settle into your seat and invite each part of the body to deeply relax. Set aside 10 minutes twice a day.
Take 6 slow, full breaths. On the next inhalation, imagine that you are filling up a water glass from bottom to top. As your breath enters the body, follow its path with your mind's eye, beginning at your belly and rising up into the abdomen and then the chest. Keep your shoulders soft and relaxed.
Notice your ribs expanding and rising as you do. On the exhalation, visualize that the air is being "poured" back out from the upper chest, through the abdomen and then finally out of your belly (as if you were tipping a glass over).
Gently press the belly in at the end of each exhalation. This empties stale air out of your lungs and helps remove toxins from your body. The effects will do wonders for you!
6. If you’re overwhelmed and can’t handle it alone, seek professional help
Often, challenging situations evoke strong feelings that can cause worry, frustration, and uncertainty. Many people going through such an experience, don’t know what to do or how to approach the situation.
If you are feeling this way, it’s probably time to find an experienced and caring therapist. A trained mental health specialist can help you to pinpoint the problems, explore your feelings and find effective strategies for responding in ways that can help improve your situation and how you feel.
It can be a life-changing decision to call and make your first appointment. Once you see how much better you can feel, you will be glad that you did!
Hi I’m Joan Stenzler. I hope that you found this article helpful!
As a holistic psychotherapist and yoga teacher, I'm here to help patients connect to the place inside that is already wise and can support their growth & healing. Our work together is a guided process of inner exploration that will strengthen your emotional health, enhance healing and facilitate profound change.
I offer a FREE 20 minute phone consultation to give you an opportunity to discuss the concerns you are currently facing, to learn about my holistic approach and experience what it would be like to work with me.
I have offices in Fresh Meadows and Nassau County and am available for both day and evening appointments, Mondays through Thursdays.
To schedule your FREE phone consultation, please call me at 516-522-0573. Thank you!