Stress is a part of life, but it’s important to manage it appropriately. If stress levels remain high for long periods, it can turn into anxiety and end up impacting your physical and mental health. Identifying ways to de-stress allows you to take control of your emotions and remain healthy.
Are You Under Stress?
If you’re feeling a bit like you’re wound up tight, you’re not alone. According to the American Psychological Association (APA), stress levels are at an all-time high.
Almost half of adults (49%) say their behavior has changed in the current year in the form of:
- Increased muscle tension
- Getting angry quickly
- Raising their voice at a loved one
- Unexpected mood changes
Ways to Keep Stress in Check
You don’t have to accept high levels of stress. After all, stress releases hormones that cause a fight -or-flight response — heartbeat speeds up, you start to sweat, your breathing changes — which may lead to emotional outbursts if left unmanaged. To keep stress to a minimum, follow some of the following stress management tips.
Get Some Exercise
The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) endorses exercise as an excellent medication-free way to deal with stress. By exercising, the body releases tension in the muscles, placing your body in a more relaxed state. Aerobic exercise, specifically, works well as an outlet for stress. Best of all, you don’t have to do Olympic-level training to get the benefits of exercise. According to the ADAA, a short brisk 10-minute walk is as effective as a 45-minute walk at getting rid of stress.
Mindfulness comes in many forms. But, in short, it’s focused attention and acceptance. The concept of “mindfulness” is an umbrella term that includes a variety of ancient practices like tai chi, yoga, and I like Pilates. However, you can simply sit in a quiet spot and concentrate on a subject, accepting and releasing any thoughts that come to mind.
Set up Your Good Sleep
Stress can keep you up at night. What’s worrisome is that a feedback loop can start, where insomnia causes stress and vice versa. Make sure to turn off electronics an hour before bed and set the atmosphere by dimming lights. Play your favorite soothing music or read a book instead. Preparing for bed puts the mind in the space to rest.
Watch Your Diet
Caffeine and sugar are detrimental to a good night’s sleep. Drinking coffee after noon might keep your brain awake well into the night. Instead, opt for decaffeinated drinks that are low on sugar. In addition, sugary and fatty foods may feel like they’re reducing your stress, but instead, they contribute to it by causing health problems.
Find What Makes You Laugh
When it comes to stress, laughter may be the best medicine. Laughing boosts healthy blood flow, releases “feel-good” hormones, and enhances your immunity. Call your funniest friend or watch a comedian when you’re stressed, and feel the tension melt away.
Take a Deep Breath
People say to “take a deep breath” for a good reason. The way we breathe affects how our body functions. Short breaths can cause you to feel stressed, while long breaths can lower blood pressure and reduce a fast heart rate. By taking deep breaths, you allow your body to relax. For example, a study published in Neurological Sciences determined that controlled deep breathing can improve mood, lower heart rate, and stress hormones levels in the body.
CalmiGo is an easy, portable, and medication-free way to guide your breathing and manage stress. Just 3 minutes gives you both immediate and long-term benefits. Start taking control of your stress and make CalmiGo a part of your “de-stressing” and relaxation routine.