5 Stress-free Stress Busters

Lately I have been feeling rather stressed. Blame it on the female cycle, the full moon, unfulfilled expectations, financial difficulties, starting a new job…argh, I can go on forever these days. Feeling this way I thought it would be a good idea to take some of my own advice. Gee, what a thought. Interestingly enough I wrote a blog post on the effects of stress on the Nervous System last year right around this time. Strange. But first a recap of last year’s blog post Supporting your Nervous System. What stress actually does to our bodies.

During stressful events, our adrenal glands release adrenaline, a hormone which activates our body’s defense mechanisms causing our hearts to pound, blood pressure to rise, muscles to tense, and the pupils of our eyes to dilate. The Nervous System is the master control center in the body. It is designed to allow rapid internal communication by detecting and responding to constant changes inside and outside the body. None of our body systems (Digestive, Cardiovascular, Immune, Lymphatic.etc) are capable of functioning alone as they all work together to maintain homeostasis (balance). The Nervous System is the chief of all the systems and that is the exact reason why we need to take care of this important body system.

Why we must reduce stress
Reducing stress also reduces your risk for heart disease, the number one killer of American women, and certain types of cancer. Many women experience PMS and menopausal symptoms will find the severity of these symptoms improved dramatically, once reduced stress level is achieved. Untreated stress leads many people to depression, anxiety, headaches, and a host of other complaints, making reduction of stress important factor in improving your total health.

So where do we start? 5 Stress-free Stress Busters

Exercise


Physical exercise is one of the most effective ways of relieving stress. It improves blood flow to the brain and causes the body to release endorphins. Even just 7 minutes of intense exercise can get these little guys going and having you feel more energized and mentally relaxed. Beauty FIT Beast is an excellent source for fresh, new exercises to surely get the blood pumping. 

Keep a Journal


Reflect on your day, your emotions, and your personal goals. Include everything that stresses you, so you can start to recognize patterns and take appropriate action. Writing is also a great way to relax and put things into perspective.

Get Organized


Set aside a place for bills, paperwork, and important documents. Store items you use most often in accessible places. I  purchased some baskets from the dollar store to keep these loose papers in and out of the way. Spending five minutes straightening your office, purse/brief case or main living area at the end or beginning of your day will not only make your work more productive but also bring your mind to a sense of clarity. Keep a long-range calendar and a short-range to-do list. Check off items as you finish them for a sense of accomplishment.

Meditate


Ai-Linn Chua Henderson, A Natural Healing Practitioner says, When we become aware of our thoughts, we are then able to see certain things about the way we make choices in our lives, or the way we react to things, and this awareness is powerful. Because this awareness gives us the power to change the thought patterns that hold us back, and allow us to consciously create new ways of thinking and patterning. Follow her easy meditation to help you de-stress, Meditation Made Easy: 10 Steps to finding your Inner Self. 

and of course……

Proper Nutrition

This photograph belongs to Melissa Macchione. Unauthorized use is prohibited. 


Eat breakfast within 1 hour of waking to break the fast will give your body the much needed glucose found in your food to give you energy. Lack of energy equals lack of motivation, attention and mood. Start off the day on the right foot. Try my Morning Glory Oatmeal which is packed with feel good ingredients such as whole grains, blueberries, nuts and seeds. 

Small more frequent meals – You want to avoid drops in your blood sugar levels. Eating small more frequent meals, every 3-4 hours, will help control blood sugar levels resulting in an overall better mood. When drops in blood sugar levels happen we tend to become more on edge and depressed. Try some of My Favourite Stress Busting Snacks in between meals to avoid the icky lows. 

Reduce or Eliminate Caffeine Intake – Avoid going for a coffee mid-afternoon for the increase in energy, instead go for a Stress Busting Snack. Caffeine stimulates the central nervous system. Heavy daily caffeine use (4 to 7 cups of coffee per day) can cause: insomnia, nervousness, restlessness, irritability, nausea or other gastrointestinal problems, fast or irregular heartbeat, muscle tremors, headaches and/or anxiety. If you are missing the caffeine go for a green tea. Yes, green tea contains caffeine however the benefits of green tea out weigh the negatives when compared to coffee.

Eat Consciously to elaborate on yesterday’s post, Conscious Eating, here are a few tips to help you eat mindfully.

1) When preparing your meal enjoy yourself. Put on your favourite music, have a clean and today work space, take pictures of your creations and have fun doing it!

2) When sitting down the meal you just prepared with love really look at the food.Recite in your mind or out loud what it is you are about to eat.

3) Eat slowly. As hungry as you may be and as delicious as the food is slow down! Twenty minutes is the time it should take to consume your meal. Tip: put your fork/spoon/hands down in-between bites.

The information presented here is not intended to replace professional medical care when needed. Consult a qualified healthcare practitioner for disease diagnosis, therapy choice, medicine selection and dosage.   

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