“It's not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.” - Lou Holtz
Everyone experiences stress in some shape or form. It’s part of life and sadly, unavoidable. For some people, stress can cause them to crumble. For others, they view it as an opportunity for growth. No matter what challenges life throws at you, stress doesn’t have to be debilitating. Here are some ways you can reduce the impact of stress in your life.
Take A Walk
Taking a walk allows you to step away from your problem and get you into a different frame of mind. Whether it’s a walk around the office block or a long walk in the park, time spent outdoors is good for you to rejuvenate your mind and body. While you are at it, make it a habit to focus on your breathing. Breathing exercises are known to calm the mind and could be key to reducing stress.
Prioritise Your To-Do List
It’s crazy to think we can fit in 20 hours worth of work in 10 hours. Yet, we all do it and we allow stress to get the better of us. To minimise stress, try reducing your workload and prioritise the items needed for the day. It’s perfectly okay to say no to a party or a neighbourhood project if your plate is already full. Perfecting time management skills requires time and effort but with a little practice, you are effectively minimising the stressors you have in your life.
Build A Support Network
Having supportive pillars such as family, friends and colleagues in your life play an important role when we are feeling stressful. For many years, we have been told that exercise, meditation and relaxation are great ways to reduce stress. But research shows that supportive relationships are actually the best stress reduction. Spending time with people we care about helps us strengthen relationships. At the same time, it teaches us to empathise and connect better with others. Sharing our problems can help release the pent up feelings and make us feel better.
We are all guilty of emotional eating. It’s easy to reach for sugar-laden or high fat foods when we feel the stress meter rising. Unfortunately, binge eating on refined carbs causes a spike in blood sugar and the effects are not pretty when it crashes – it may cause us more stress and anxiety. Stress is bad for our gut and can negatively affect our digestive tract. To keep stress at bay, try eating foods that support mood regulation and energy such as eggs, avocados, walnut and foods containing probiotics such as kimchi or tempeh. Drinking VITAGEN on a daily basis is good way to get our probiotics fix. It does wonders for our gut which helps keep our mood regulated.
Take A Vacation
When life gets a little overwhelming and impossible, pack your bags and take a vacation. It doesn’t matter how far you travel but a change of environment and time away from everyday routine helps put things in perspective. Getting away (even for a short while) can help reset our mental and emotional wellbeing and hopefully, return home a little happier, a lot more calm and productive.
Stress is inevitable but knowing how to cope with stress is essential before it negatively affects your health.