Stress is what makes the world go round, it motivates us to take some form of action. Stress is a word that is used to describe our body’s survival hormone; the “fight or flight” response. In the animal kingdom it’s primary function is for survival, the part of our brain says “do I need to fight or run for my life?” So literally we are living daily like we are in constant fear for our survival. However being in a constant state of stress is can lead to an imbalance, in our health and it effects our ability to rest and relax. Examples of this is using alcohol to “wind down” and sugar to “get an extra boost.” Learning to incorporate daily stress management techniques can help you start to learn to control your stress and live a more balanced life. I have developed an easy way for you to help identify your stressors so that you can start to manage them, its called “The Stress Test.” Ask yourself two simple questions when feeling “stressed” about a situation 1) Does it make you feel inspired to take action, or make you feel drained? 2) Is it in your control? If the situation makes you feel drained and is not in your control then you may be harming yourself by stressing over it, this is generally when we turn to our coping mechanisms like alcohol and sugar to “help us get through it.”
Steps you can take to help center and balance to better handle stress:
1) Deep Breathing- Stop and take a few deep breaths; oxygen helps your brain function.
2) Take a few moments outside and notice the sounds around you. (5 minutes is sufficient)
3) Listen to calming music, or a guided meditation.
4) Take a relaxing bath
6) Just plain go to sleep cause you might just be tired
I am not asking you to snap your fingers and be all Zen, I am simply asking you to take small consistent steps to manage your stress that will enhance your health and well-being.