Tongue on the roof of your mouth?
Shoulders up to your ears?
You’re probably stressed out. 😦
Hey, life’ll do that to us sometimes and our world is full of reasons to be stressed TF out! But what’s important to remember is that more often that not, the way we respond to stress is completely within our control.
It’s ironic too because when we’re stressed out it’s usually because we feel we have no control.
But that’s not true! We always have control over how we respond to situations that stress us out.
To stress or not to stress, that is the question.
You still with me, Horacio?
When our bodies and minds experience stress, the symptoms can manifest in a variety of ways – from the ones mentioned above (which are some of the ways my body “stresses” out) to experiencing nausea, muscle aches, shaking, dry mouth, and headaches.
As with most everything, our stress responses are habitual and because they’re habitual those habits can be broken. Stress is very real but you don’t have to be stressed out.
The CDC recommends the following ways to help you reduce your stress:
- Take care of yourself.
- Eat healthy, well-balanced meals
- Exercise on a regular basis
- Get plenty of sleep
- Give yourself a break if you feel stressed out
- Talk to others. Share your problems and how you are feeling and coping with a parent, friend, counselor, doctor, or pastor. Often times a little perspective is all that’s needed to take the weight of the world off your shoulders.
- Avoid drugs and alcohol. These may seem to help with the stress. But in the long run, they create additional problems and increase the stress you are already feeling.
- Take a break. If news events are causing your stress, take a break from listening or watching the news.
Those are great but sometimes our stress can just as easily be alleviated by making adjustments to our behavior. For example: you’ve got bills to pay but can’t remember to pay them? Easy, just set up reminders in your phone.
Or if you’re a chronic procrastinator, make a schedule and follow it.
Or if certain situations, people and places stress you out: duces up and bounce, yo! ✌🏼
Healthline has some wonderful suggestions for alleviating stress.
Exercise appears at the top of many lists, and let me tell you, as a self acknowledged Worry Wart, exercise has become a life saver for me!
I exercise everyday now, the benefits of which are just too numerous to recount here. But yes, I’ve experienced a dramatic decline in the amount of stress I feel even though, in many ways, my life is now more “stressful” than ever.
There are other ways to help you reduce stress and relax. One of my favorites is Full Body Relaxation and it goes like this: