Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Healthy Ways to Deal With Stress

In yesterday's blog I talked about how detrimental stress can be to your health and today I am going to give you a few healthy ways to alleviate the stress in your life...

OK today is officially blog twenty-two and apparently twenty-one days is all the time needed to establish a habit, so as of yesterday my blogging habit is now firmly established. :) Good news for me! I still do feel a bit of stress each morning when I think about the blog, but it is a good kind of stress and once I sit down and get serious about my writing it usually passes pretty quickly. That unfortunately is not the same for chronic stress and that is why it is so detrimental that we all find "healthy" ways to alleviate it before it wreaks havoc on our health. Kids also experience stress in their day to day life and it is important that you check in with your children from time to time to see how they are dealing with it. Teens are especially prone to stress and too much stress can lead to depression which is something that needs to be tackled professionally before it gets out of hand.

I find nothing squelches my stress like physical activity. It has to be more than a gentle walk and has to be at least thirty minutes before I start to feel the benefits. I find a very brisk walk on the treadmill, interspersed with lots of inclines, really gets my heart pumping. I sometimes run, but I find that a little jarring on my knees. Choose an activity that gets your heart rate up, but you are still able to carry on a conversation if you had to, but would not be able to sing. That is the gauge I use to see if I am working out hard enough. As you get fitter you will find you need to up the ante a bit in order to get the same benefit. In order to get the best results from exercise you have to be consistent, so try for every second day or 3-4 times a week minimum for no less than thirty minutes.

Meditation is also a tool I use when things get to be a bit too much! There are lots of good guided meditations you can use to get you started. Check out the reviews on Amazon to get a good idea which ones are recommended. Yoga is also supposed to be a good stress buster- my youngest sister swears by her daily hot yoga class - I have yet to give it a go

Other things to try:

They say that problems shared are halved. so find a close friend or family member and talk about how your are feeling. Sometimes just getting it off your chest can help immensely.

Choose nutritionally sound meal and snacks. Stay awake from fatty food and sweets. This is a no-brainer as a healthy body helps you deal with stress more efficiently. Eliminate coffee and other highly caffeinated beverages, or if you can't do that at least cut back a bit or choose tea which has less caffeine.

Get proper rest at least 8 hours a night if possible.Try to turn off all electronics things like computers, television, at least an hour before you plan to retire for the night. Make sure your room is completely dark and free from distraction.

Just remember stress will always be a part of our life but it doesn't have to get the best of us.

Happy Stress-free day :)


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