managing stress

Every day, we have stresses, nervous energy, doubts, and tension that weigh on us. When we wake up in the morning, we think of the tasks that are ahead: long to-do lists, cleaning and chores, errands, and everything else we’re required to do to keep life running... Jobs to manage, families to take care of, and other basic needs we can’t ignore. Add in complicated relationships, the pressure of reaching goals, natural feelings of disappointment, and health concerns. . . It’s enough to overwhelm anybody, right?

How to manage stress?

Our ability to manage emotions, make decisions, and solve problems depends on our mental and emotional state. Stress can slowly erode emotional health and have significant long-term medical consequences. Mental health begins with eating right, resting, and exercise. Additionally, cerebral practices like meditation, positive thinking, and self-development can be employed to cultivate a healthy mindset.

 Simple and Quick Solutions

  1. In any situation, take two minutes to breathe. We’re not just talking about trying to breathe deeply in and out here, though that is the start of it. Improve on this idea by using the 4–7–8 breathing exercise. Breathing only through your nose, count to four as you deeply inhale, then count to seven as you hold your breath, and count to eight as you exhale. Repeat the cycle three more times. This should take around two minutes to complete. This will help you focus on your body and help you breathe more deeply on a regular basis without even needing to think about it.
  2. Drink herbal tea. If you’ve never tried herbal tea, now might be a good time to give it a try for some stress relief. Teas like lemon balm, peppermint, chamomile, or passion flower are helpful. You can incorporate essential oils into your tea as well—infuse a drop of essential oils like Roman Chamomile, Lavender, or Melissa into herbal teas like chamomile to soothe the body and mind. Just the act of drinking warm tea can also be soothing and relaxing and just the boost you need for the day.
  3. Get outside in the fresh air. Although this is easier to do when the weather is nice, even when the weather is not ideal, it is a good idea to at least get a few minutes of fresh air each day and get your body moving. Reconnecting to the outside world and nature can help you refocus and feel better. If you can’t go outside in this moment, reach for Vetiver. Its calming and grounding effect on emotions is great to diffuse, or to put directly in your palms, cup your hands around your nose, and inhale.
  4. Exercise for at least for 30 minutes a day, three days a week. Exercise is known to bump up the level of endorphin production, improves your mood, and helps you move past the day’s irritations. Learn more about exercise here.
  5. Set out 10 minutes in the morning for meditation. In yoga specifically, meditating is about being grounded physically and mentally, and coming to an expanded state of awareness. You can start meditating by choosing a consistent time and place, and then picking something to focus on for that session. (Examples of different focuses include a helpful intention or affirmation like “I am relaxed”, counting your breath as in point number one, or visualizing your favorite spot in nature and trying to keep your focus on that only.) Don’t be discouraged if your mind starts to wander, just refocus back on your purpose. You can also increase the effects of mediation by diffusing calming oils like Frankincense while you practice. There are many other ways to meditate, try different kinds before you determine how to incorporate it into your daily life. Find a guided meditation here.
  6. Give yourself a hand massage. According to a 2008 study published by the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, a five-minute hand massage can lower stress levels. If you can’t find anyone to give you one, you can massage your own hands. 
  7. Ensure that you get enough sleep. Adequate rest offers our bodies the chance to recuperate from daily activities, enhance energy levels, and alleviate the impact of stress. Learn more about sleep here.
  8. Generate a support system. This may be the most important tip, because even though it can be hard to reach out to others when you feel overwhelmed, sometimes it is necessary to depend on other people for help. Don’t try to keep going alone. Even if the stress is over something that you feel you have to do alone, at least having someone there to listen or give you a hug (which is proven to help with stress on its own) can help more than you realize.
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