How to Lower Stress
Are you feeling overwhelmed, tired, people needing your attention, worrying about how to survive until the next thing comes along? The holidays are coming. What does that make you feel? Happy because you get to spend time with loved ones? Or worried that you have no way to get everything done that needs to be done? No matter how you think about it, this is a time of year when stress feels overwhelming.
I’ve always loved fall because it’s so beautiful, and the beginning of boot season, but also because it’s my favorite time of year to review my life. Maybe because it’s my birthday season or because I spent so many years as a student, fall for me is the beginning of my new year.
I usually start by doing a cleanse in October where I eat mostly vegetables and lean protein and take detox supplements. Often when cleansing it also involves some emotional processing where old thoughts or fears come up. This year some things came up for me that got me thinking about stress.
What makes something stressful? It seems to me that we feel stressed when there are emotions attached to an event or experience. Dealing with stress usually means finding a way to deal with emotions.
Here are five ways to deal with stress, right now and how to prevent it from getting to the point of no return.
1. When you plan your holidays, make sure that you allow time for yourself. Do not box yourself in to doing so many things that you don’t have time to be quiet and reflective.
2. Learn when to say no. Don’t try to do everything yourself. If you committed to cooking, get someone to help. Saying no sometimes will allow you to feel good about the things you say yes to.
3. Take 5 deep breaths whenever you begin to feel overwhelmed. You may not notice it, but often when you feel stressed, you stop breathing. You begin to feel relaxed right away when you breath because it moves the emotion out of the way.
4. As much as possible, stick to your schedule of exercise, sleep and regular meals – your body likes being taken care of and will give you energy in return. If you forget to exercise, just do 30 seconds of really high intensity movement every 5-10 minutes, it will turn out to make a huge difference.
5. Of course when its feast season, its hard to avoid certain foods that you might avoid most of the year. Try not to overindulge in sugary, starchy foods, they make your emotions even more stressful. I’ve noticed when I eat sugar, that’s what happens to me. You’ve all noticed how kids act when they eat sugar. Adults don’t usually get all wild after sugar, but that reaction is still going on inside, we might just not be aware of it. If you do indulge, make sure its after you’ve eaten enough protein and vegies, that will help balance your blood sugar and make the impact of sugary foods less stressful on your body.