Saturday, August 27, 2016

10 simple ways to lessen daily stress...

I don't know about you but I for sure can get caught up in the stresses of daily life.  I am sure you know that stress can be harmful to our bodies.

Following are 10 simple ways to lessen daily stress.

I am a planner addict so this one comes easy for me but can be difficult for some.  Write yourself small doable lists but realize that they don't have to be rigid... things do come up.  Small little routines throughout the day, help with productivity.  For example, setting a timer when on Facebook etc lets you know time is up and move onto something else.  I like about a 15 to 20 minute computer time before I begin making supper but that can easily drag on longer so a timer comes in handy.

Taking a few minutes each evening planning for the next day.  You can get your outfit ready, plan your dinner, make lunches for the next day and even write out your to do list.

Be sure to enjoy the moment you are in.  Savor your coffee/tea, listen to the birds, enjoy your little one sitting on your lap because those moments are gone to quickly.

Regular exercise is important for optimal health but it also reduces stress.  Many of us find it hard to fit in a 30 minute workout/walk whatever... did you know that short spurts can be beneficial as well?  A 10 minute walk is very effective at reducing stress... can you fit one in on your lunch break?  while your child is at soccer practice? what about right after dinner before the clean up?  

I am on my feet all day at work so when I got a Fitbit I was not surprised to see how many steps I was getting in each day.  I do recommend this as a motivational tool, especially if your job tends to be a sedentary one.  10000 steps a day is recommended

Yes laughter is good for you.  It releases endorphins that improve mood and immune health and it lowers the levels of the stress hormones (cortisol and epinephrine).  Sometimes... I just need a laugh, one way I for sure get one is reading some of the Autocorrect mishaps... google it, you will see what I mean.  Yes some may be made up, but they still make me laugh!  

Spending time outdoors is a natural antidepressant.  Having a dog that greets me everyday with that face definitely forces me to get out for a walk/run when I get home from work.  I'm glad though because I always feel better once I get home.

Natural scents have a calming effect.  I have really gotten into essential oils and I must agree.  They are not overpowering and just have a feel good effect.  Some of my favorites are lavender, lemongrass and orange.

I used to take time every day for my crafting.  It was my wind down time.  I have not done much of it in the past year, but this is one area I am trying to focus on more for me.  I am hoping to make cards and scrapbook more.  But other ways to enjoy creativity - listen to music, dance and just enjoy art.

During those moments when you feel you are about to explode because things are feeling overwhelming - take 5 minutes to breathe deeply.  Breathe slowly and deeply and be mindful of those breaths - your rib cage expanding, lungs filling... slow breaths reduce stress hormones and lowers heart rate and blood pressure.

This is about finding inner peace.  It may be something simple like enjoying a cup of tea, taking a bath or just sitting and listening to music - whatever helps you to clear your mind.  Be sure to mindful of the moment and take deep breaths while doing so.

This is a great way to remind yourself of your accomplishments each day.  We often think we did not get anything done but be sure to appreciate all those little things.  Write down something you did and something you are grateful for.  Positive thinking is good for us.

I know this can be a tough one.  However, get into the practice of the first 9 and I bet sleep will come much easier for you! Have a quiet time before bed, no screens (tv, computer, phone), deep breathing, clearing your mind, being mindful of the moment and reflecting on the day.  A great way to gear your body up for a great night of sleep.

Essential oils can help too.  Diffusing a calming one in your bedroom or rubbing onto your feet (I spritz my sheets and feet with a lavender/water mixture every night).

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