- Mental Health
5 Easy Ways to Kick Stress!
Stress and Your Body
Stress can be detrimental to your health and your overall well being. We all know that being stressed out does not feel good, but what about its effects on our bodies? When a person is stressed out they can experience rapid breathing or even hyperventilation. The liver can produce more blood sugar which can ultimately lead to diabetes. Menstrual cycles can become more painful and lengthen, shorten, or stop altogether. Stress can cause the muscles to tense leaving you with headaches, back pain, and other aches and pains. It can cause the immune system to slow down and also leave you with nausea, gas, diarrhea, or constipation. We aren't going to discuss the mental state it can leave you in. So what are some quick fixes for this all too apparent problem?
5 Quick Ways to Help With Stress
Taking a bubble bath can make anyone feel better. If you want to make it productive, try adding some aromatherapy candles designed for stress. Scents like lavender, vanilla, and chamomile can calm anyone who had a rough day. Take a good book with you to the tub. Make sure you are reading something light and airy. Maybe a comedic short story or a sweet love story that is sure to have a happy end. Soak for a while and breathe deeply to ingest all of the aromatherapy and ensure its effectiveness. Bath and Body Works has a great line of aromatic bubble baths that I personally recommend. It will help if you can do this right before bed as well. This way your body is relaxed and ready for a good nights rest.
Getting a good nights sleep each night will help improve your day, productivity, happiness, and overall health. Sleep repairs your body and is required to be healthy, so why would you want to shortchange it? Taking a bath before bed as previously mentioned, will help your body to relax and get ready to sleep. Also turn off all electronics like cell phones, computers, or televisions about an hour before bed. Your body will understand that it is time to wind down and your brain will begin to relax. Try and block out all exterior sounds. If you live near a busy highway, you can turn on a fan, or an air purifier that makes a gentle hum sound. This will help drown out many of the sounds that can wake your body up at night or prevent you from falling asleep soundly. If you need some noise, try a CD with music designed to help you sleep. Black out your room. Completely! Cover up all LED lights from alarm clocks, dvd players, cell phones, or anything else producing a light. You will be amazed at the difference it makes. Shoot for eight to nine hours of uninterrupted sleep. Your body will be fully repaired and ready for the day ahead.
"Laughter is the best medicine" we have all heard this. Proverbs 17:22 says A merry heart doeth good like medicine. Watching a good comedic TV show or a movie can help lighten your spirits and help you focus on the positive. Reading a funny story or book will make you feel happy and let you breathe easier. Thoughts make physical activity in the brain, making it easy to track and point what you are thinking. Studies show that having good thoughts vs bad ones produce positive effects on the brain and the body. So go ahead and watch an I Love Lucy episode or a good ole Chevy Chase movie. My personal go to is a Friends episode or two. Maybe you can call a friend that has a positive effect on your well being, or someone that is always known to make you laugh and feel better. Don't ever underestimate the power of feeling good. You will relax and forget about whatever has been bothering you.
Dump Your Thoughts
I am sure you have noticed the name of my hub, thoughtdump. This is very important to reducing stress. If all you can think about is what you have to do and what needs to be done, how can you focus on being stress free? Take a journal or whiteboard and dump all of the thoughts running through your mind. Dump all of your todo lists including that day's list, that week's list, and that month's. Whatever it is thats bothering you. Once you have it on paper, its easier to map out, and you won't have to remind yourself every five seconds of all the things that need to be done. Go ahead and plan out how you are going to accomplish these tasks. Pick a few things that maybe your husband or your kids could do for you or help you with. Problems that don't have solutions will be easier to attack when you can see them and make notes next to them. Write down a few ways that can begin to move the problem into the direction of a solution. Pretty soon you will mark everything off your list and you won't have to think about it anymore.
Everyone knows how good working out is for our bodies, but how about for stress relief? When you exercise you release endorphins which promote good mental health. Endorphins also make people happy, which will reduce your stress by default. It also makes you feel better about your body shape and promotes a healthy self image. You will release a lot of your stress during your exertion. Also, it may help you realize that if you can run 3 miles, squat 100 lbs, or beat someone in tennis, then you can tackle whatever it is that is stressing you out. If you don't like to work out much, try going for a short walk while listening to some music. Dance around, sing loudly, or enjoy yourself in whatever way you can. If you like to garden, try that. You may enjoy puzzles or crosswords, so go ahead and spend some time doing whatever you enjoy. As long as you feel good when you are finished with your activity, you are going to start feeling better about whatever is bothering you.
If you have any other ideas on how to reduce stress, feel free to comment below. Any information adding to this short list is sure to help others. Most people endure stress without even thinking about it. Its time to kick it to the curb and start to enjoy your overall health.