10 simple ways to reduce stress
GUEST POST BY KYLIE TRAVERS
Following on from my last post where I talked about prevention and my personal experience with paralysis because of neglect, I want to encourage everyone to take some time out for themselves.
1.) Get active
Exercise improves your overall health, improves cognitive function plus it increases endorphins and other positive chemicals in your brain. Exercise doesn’t need to be training at the gym for hours. Try yoga, it is great for overall health and wellbeing while being gentle on the body. You strengthen your core, increase flexibility and toning. This post
has some great tips and poses.
If you find it hard to fit in time for a workout, look at was to incorporate smaller, incidental exercises into your day. Do squats as you heat up something in the microwave or in the ad break on TV. Give exercises such as kettle bell swings a go. They are an all over body workout, Park your car further away from the shops. Walk everywhere you can. Play with your kids on the park instead of sitting and watching them.
Get out there and look at how you can be more active in your everyday activities.
Get outside and get some sunshine! Be safe about it, don’t bake yourself in the middle of the day in the middle of summer. We don’t get outside enough though. Fresh air along with sunshine help raise the right chemicals within us and help fight off stress.
Stop trying to do everything yourself. Look at your life, what causes stress that you could outsource? Is it the ironing, cleaning, cooking dinner every night? Maybe you hate grocery shopping or want someone else to drive to work. How can you make this happen?
Consider how much time you are spending doing these tasks that cause you stress. If it your budget can handle it, having someone else do these stressful tasks, it is probably an investment in your health.
4.) Use your extras
I have extras on my health insurance and until last year I didn’t use them much. Things like physiotherapy, gym memberships, naturopathic consults, massage and acupuncture all contribute to reducing stress, improving health and your wellbeing. Check your health insurance to see what you are covered for or compare health insurance policies to see what else is out there and switch.
5.) Eat well
Nutrition is often underrated. The amount of people I know who have changed what they eat and as a result it has impacted on there health and mental wellbeing is astounding. A constant supply of junk food makes us cranky, addicted to sugar, unable to absorb nutrients from real food and as a result our whole health slides downhill.
Menu plan and eat well, in season. You can have the occasional treat, make sure it is only a treat though, not an every day item.
6.) Stay hydrated
Most people do not drink enough water each day. If you find it too difficult to drink plain water, try flavoured water such as mint and cucumber, lemon, melon or berries. Place some fruit or herbs in the water to infuse them. Drink after they have been there a while.
Record your water consumption and set a goal to drink a minimum of 2L of water a day. You can get apps to track it if you need.
7.) Calming teas
Teas such as chamomile are meant to calm your mind and body, help you sleep better and reduce stress. Incorporating them in your diet daily will help you relax.
8.) Identify and eliminate triggers/pressure points
Take note of how you feel in different situations, when you are doing different activities and find out what raises your stress levels. Once you know what is causing you to be stressed you can take action to reduce or eliminate it.
9.) Time out
Give yourself a break and time out to do whatever you want. Go on a weekend retreat, go to the day spa, book a babysitter for the day and don’t feel guilty for taking some time out.
10.) Gratitude diary
A gratitude diary has had a profound effect on my mental health and overall wellbeing. By writing at least three things a day I am grateful for it helps me see the positive side of things more often, reduces my stress and makes me appreciate what I have.
Why should you try to reduce your stress levels?Compare The Market
did a survey on Australians and their stress. The infographic below shows what is stressing us, how it impacts us and why.
What are your thoughts? What tips do you have to reduce stress?
About Kylie Travers: