We all have stress in our lives and we would be lying to ourselves if we said we didn’t. With all that goes on during your daily routine it’s hard to stay away from stress. Our jobs, responsibilities, parents, kids and families can all throw us through a whirlwind and then the stress begins. You start asking yourself questions like: How am I going to get this project done by the deadline? How am I going to get the kids dinner, their homework done and get them to both of their games at separate fields? How am I going to check on mom, get to my meeting and try to spend time with my family? All of these questions would cause stress. I deal with things like this all the time. I stress about getting out of work on time just so I can get a workout in and get home in time for the kids to get off the bus. I stress about how I am going to fit patients in when I only have limited space at my clinic. I stress about when I get slow at work and what I can do to get better. I decided to put together a small list of things that you can do to try and decrease your stress levels. I do some of them on a regular basis to try and keep myself grounded.
Exercise: Exercise is a great way to relieve stress. As we exercise we release endorphines, which are the bodies natural pain medication hormones. When they are released it makes us feel better, improves our mood and increases our pleasure. This, in turn is what causes us to feel so good after a workout.
Socialize: When we are stressed sometimes we just want to be alone, but socializing with people can help as well. Talking to someone and venting is sometimes all we need. It’s also good to talk about other things to try and get your mind off of your current situation.
Read: Reading is one of the best ways to relax and even six minutes can be enough to reduce the stress levels by more than two thirds. Research has found that this is one of the best ways on top of walking, listening to music or having a cup of tea.
Meditate: Sometimes you just need to go to that other place that makes you happy. Meditation is a skill, but when done properly can take you into a whole new world of being happy.
Breathe deeply: Deep breathing exercises are always good to try and relax yourself. Have you ever seen the movie the Karate Kid? Mr. Miyagi had Daniel doing this to stay focused and not lose his cool. This actually does work and if you do it often enough it will become a habit. If combined with meditation it is very powerful.
Listen to music: Listening to your favorite music always takes your mind off of things. There is something about that beat! Or when your favorite jam comes on you just want to rock out! Don’t lie, you were just rocking out in your car the other day and got caught singing at a red light. I did! Seriously, I was at a red light just belting out some Kenny Chesney and I looked over and the lady was just laughing. It was cool because I probably made her day!
Mow the lawn: This is one of my favorite things to do when I am stressed! I love to mow the lawn! Anyone that knows me will tell you the same thing. I put my headphones on and drive. I like to make perfect stripes in different directions each week. It’s kind of like a picture that I am making. It makes me feel good when I’m done and look at how nice it looks.
Drink a beer or two: Now I’m not saying go get smashed, but drinking a beer or two can take your mind off things as well as help you relax. It also brings in the social aspect and helps you let loose from time to time. This is not recommended to do a lot, but every now and then you just need to enjoy yourself.
So, the next time you are feeling that stress start to build up try a few of these tips. I guarantee one will work for you. Enjoy, and as always don’t hesitate to reach out to me with any questions or concerns.