Stress is something we all experience in our lives daily. In small doses, it can actually be beneficial to us. It can help us focus, boost memory and can save our lives in emergency situations. The problem occurs when that stress becomes chronic and is never-ending. While stress is inevitable, there are ways we can manage it and improve how we deal with it. Below are five tips for managing your stress naturally.
One of the classic and most effective ways to reduce stress is to start exercising. Exercising improves our circadian rhythms, which helps us to have more restorative sleep. Better sleep means we have the energy to deal with the challenges of the day. Yoga can be a very effective form of exercise to calm the body and reduce stress-related hormones.
Regular meditation or prayer has been shown to relieve stress and help find peace of mind. As little as 10-15 minutes of mindfulness once or twice a day can reduce anxiety, depression and poor mental health. The important thing with this practice is to make it regular and something you enjoy doing.
Therapies like massage or acupuncture help to regulate the nervous system and reduce the effects of stress. Taking the time for some self-care is especially important during periods of heightened stress.
When we eat a diet high in vitamins and minerals from vegetables, fruit, healthy fats and good quality protein we give the body the fuel it needs to function optimally. Healthy foods give the brain the right nutrients to make good decisions. Processed foods high in sugar affects our blood sugar levels and can cause anxiety and fatigue.
Spending time with loved ones gives us a chance to connect and communicate our feelings. When we can discuss challenges with those we are close to we are also better able to find solutions and implement a support structure.