In our go, go, go world full of demands, we are all too familiar with the effects of long-term stress upon our health: irritability, fatigue, headaches, inability to concentrate, digestive issues, sleeping issues, and racing thoughts-- just to name a few. When left untreated, long term stress can lead to bigger health problems like heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, weakened immune system, and mental illnesses such as anxiety disorders, depression, and can even trigger schizophrenia.
So if we can’t stop our lives to help relax our bodies and minds, how do we reduce the everyday stress that can cause so many issues? Here are our favorite 6 ways to manage and naturally relieve stress!
- Stick to a 60/40 split between stress/work and rest. Stressors in this model include work, exercise, travel, environment, and even things like poor diet and alcohol. Rest can include things that bring you joy and laughter (a natural stress relieving activity), gentle activity, meditation, sleeping, and mindful eating.
- We love to use bodywork as a way to treat your body to some healing touch while it relaxes you! Anyone that has left our treatment rooms knows how relaxed you can feel after a session with our amazing bodyworkers. Not only does bodywork help your body heal itself, getting into a mindful headspace for an hour (or even the last 10 minutes of your session!) can help quiet your mind from your busy everyday life.
- Eat foods that nourish your body! Foods like garlic, Acerola cherry powder, and fatty fish boast high amounts of vitamins and minerals that help your body with its immune response, and overall stress response. Switching drinks from coffee to matcha, ginger tea, or ashwagandha can also help reduce stress and build up your body’s ability to handle stress.
- Stick to a fitness routine that works for your body, schedule, and mind! Make sure to perform workouts that fuel you for the rest of the day, and include movements that you love so you look forward to your time in the gym! If you’re not sure where to start, or need more support, hire a coach who builds you up and helps you work toward your goals!
- Go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time every day! We all know how important our circadian rhythms are, and when they get messed up, everything else, including our mental wellbeing, appetite, and moods, start to decline as well. The best way to reduce stress is to NOT bring in additional stress on the body and mind!
- Never underestimate the power of your support system. If you’re having a particularly difficult time, reach out to a friend or family member to talk things out! Releasing pent up feelings of anger, sadness, fear, or overwhelm can relieve a decent amount of stress! And if your friend is able to suggest a solution you hadn’t thought of before, that could lead to even further stress reduction!
If you’ve tried all of these techniques and you’re still struggling with your everyday stress, Coach Sky suggests identifying your main stress trigger and doing one thing every day that goes directly opposite to the trigger. For example, if your job is your main trigger, the one thing that you may do everyday is apply to a different job that would bring you more joy. Or, if your family is bringing you stress, allow the kids to go on a playdate and let your partner know that you need a self-care break to refill your cup. Allowing yourself to actively fight against your stress rather than proactively fix how it affects you gives you more ownership over your situation, which in turn can lower your stress as well!
With so many ways to reduce stress in your life, try incorporating one of these tips into your daily schedule, whether that’s adding a food to your diet, finding a fitness buddy, or living intentionally to act against your main stressor!