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Stress Relief Techniques: 6 Tips to Relax Fast

Updated on May 19, 2014
Don't crack under pressure!
Don't crack under pressure! | Source

Using Stress Relief Techniques are More Important Than You Think

Do you think stress relief is a luxury you don't have time to enjoy?

Here's the scary truth: if you don't take the time to practice stress relief techniques throughout the day you could suffer some painful consequences.

Chronic stress is associated with a number of disorders, including cardiovascular disease, breast cancer, obesity, and a suppressed immune system.

Managing stress levels is at least as important than diet and exercise.

Stress is natural. Constant stress without interruption is not.

Stress Relief Techniques for a Busy Schedule

Worry and anxiety aren't the only things that keep your stress hormones elevated: Sleep deprivation, eating and drinking high amounts of sugar and caffeine, and constantly working without regular breaks all keep you in a state of "fight or flight".

These simple stress relief techniques don't involve hours of meditation or yoga. They're more about routinely lowering your stress hormone levels throughout the day in order to keep you in balance.

Balance helps to keep you from "freaking out" easily. It stabilizes your moods, promotes clear thinking, and strengthens your immune system.

When stress relief techniques become a habit, you gain control over your emotions and get better at managing daily pressures.

Fortunately, stress relief techniques don't require a lot of time or materials.

Beautiful Meditation Music Helps Relax Your MInd

(#1) Listen to Background Music

Listening to relaxing music is a great way to lower stress hormones and blood pressure.

Most people might play classical or new age music to calm their nerves, but the most effective tunes might be the ones you choose yourself. If you prefer to relax with hits from the seventies or jazz favorites, those choices may work best for you.

Whether you're cleaning the house, working at your desk, or sitting in traffic, listening to music that relaxes your mind helps to alleviate tension. Keep playlists accessible so that you can listen to calming music for at least a few minutes now and then throughout the day, providing quick ways to relieve stress.

Stress During Pregnancy

Recent research shows that chronic stress during pregnancy increases certain developmental risks to a fetus, in some cases even more than smoking. In her book Stress Solutions for Pregnant Moms, Dr. Susan Andrews does an excellent job discussing this issue while providing a number of proven methods for balancing stress.

(#2) Focus on Your Breath

Concentrating on your breath is a common way to bring your mind into the present moment.

Meditation and yoga make use of this valuable tool, which is the main reason why these practices are so relaxing. When your mind is constantly racing, thinking about problems, issues, ideas, the future, you-name-it, you can't relax.

Taking even 20 seconds to stop and feel your breath entering your nostrils, filling your lungs, and exiting your body is tremendously effective.

Imagine that you're inhaling a cleansing white light, and exhaling a black smoke that represents all of your worries and anxieties. Reset your body and mind so that you can face the next part of your day.

(#3) Bond with Nature

Whether you love the natural beauty of nature or prefer the sights and sounds of a concrete jungle, experiencing elements of nature have been shown to be effective ways to relieve stress and anxiety.

Take a few moments to walk in the park, watch the squirrels play, and listen to birds sing as gears of your busy mind slow down for a rest.

Don't have a park nearby? Watching videos of nature scenes or listening to nature sounds, like waves crashing or rain falling, are other beneficial options.

How About You?

What do you do to relax?

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(#4) Take a Barefoot Walk in the Grass

You know the disease-fighting antioxidants provided by fruits and vegetables in your diet? The same free-radical-busting nutrients are found radiating from the earth, and they travel through your skin as you walk barefoot on the ground.

It might sound a bit odd, but this effect has actually been proven using diagnostic equipment in scientific studies.

Free electrons constantly flow from the earth. When you walk barefoot on the ground, especially the dewy grass first thing in the morning or along the shoreline of the beach, these electrons flow into your body and neutralize free radicals throughout your body. This reduces inflammation, which alleviates pain and relaxes you. Research shows that grounding balances the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems, making it one of the most effective ways to relieve stress and tension.

Triple Leaf Tea, Jasmine Green Tea, 20 Tea Bags (Pack of 6)
Triple Leaf Tea, Jasmine Green Tea, 20 Tea Bags (Pack of 6)

This is my favorite green tea--it helps curb my coffee addiction!


(#5) Replace Coffee with Herbal or Green Tea

Caffeine dependence is a sign of adrenal fatigue, which keeps your stress hormones elevated and can lead to a wide range of mental and physical problems.

If the thought of giving up coffee altogether stresses you out, consider simply reducing the amount you drink. Try taking breaks in your day with herbal teas instead.

Herbal teas have aromas and substances that promote calm and relaxation. Green tea contains theanine, which is also effective in reducing anxiety.

(#6) Take an Exotic {Mental} Vacation

Can't actually get on a boat and sail to the Caribbean? Take a moment to imagine you're already there, lazing in a lounge chair and sipping your favorite cocktail. Hear the waves crashing, smell the salty air, and feel the tropical breezes kissing your face.

Relaxing thoughts like these can powerfully change your thought processes and ease your mind. Make a habit of squashing the pressure with an imaginary vacation before life overwhelms you.

Taking a Moment Can Change Your Life

All you need is a moment to distract your active mind. When you feel the tension mounting, simply find a minute or two to switch gears and put yourself back into balance. Use these simple stress relief techniques throughout the day to promote good health and well-being.

© Liz Davis 2012 Stress Relief Techniques

What is your favorite way to relieve tension?

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    • Radcliff profile image

      Liz Davis 4 years ago from Hudson, FL

      Thanks, planetway! I love grounding--it's such an interesting subject. I still drink coffee, too :) I think it becomes a problem when you have to rely on it to get through the day, but I so enjoy my morning cup!

    • profile image

      planetway 4 years ago

      Excellent tips. I have written about #4 myself. Must work on #5 personally (just finished my large morning coffee).

    • Radcliff profile image

      Liz Davis 5 years ago from Hudson, FL

      Thank you, CatsPage! Cutting back on the caffeine definitely helps to reduce stress levels. I appreciate your comment!

    • CatsPage profile image

      Catherine Spinola 5 years ago from New Jersey, USA

      Interesting and informative hub. We certainly can use some stress free moments. I actually replaced the coffee with tea later in the day. I look at it as a treat not a necessity and take a moment to relax and enjoy a cup. Great suggestions!! Thanks Radcliff.

    • Radcliff profile image

      Liz Davis 5 years ago from Hudson, FL

      Thanks, Billy. I know you are a good example of someone who has become a pro when it comes to stress management!

      Thanks for stopping by, Cathy. We live in stressful times, that's for sure. It's good to remember to take a break from the strain now and then.

    • Cathy Fidelibus profile image

      Ms. Immortal 5 years ago from NJ

      Thanks great hub. Stress gets the better of all of us sometimes. Great suggestions.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      All excellent suggestions. Most I follow naturally now and I am, for the most part, stress-free!