Stress is usually defined as a response to a demand or a threat and it can entail psychological and physical symptoms that affect our nervous system, making us feel tense and unwell. If we do nothing to tackle our stress levels, we can end up having serious problems related to blood pressure, obesity or even diabetes. With this in mind, effectively handling stress and learning how to release tension is fundamental and will help us live healthier and, ultimately, happier lives.
Although it is hard to avoid stressful situations, we can learn how to deal with the emotions that trigger in us in a wiser way. First, it is quite likely that we have already accumulated a certain dose of unreleased tension, especially if we haven’t had the chance to take a break from our routine. There are many ways in which we can start feeling relaxed again, in spite of having to deal with our sometimes-demanding lives. Exercise is one of the best ways in which we can relieve ourselves from a series of psychological burdens. From signing up for a CrossFit, yoga or Pilates class, trying out a powered-up version of your favorite mental sport, or swimming or joining a soccer team, there are many healthy options within your reach. Make sure you wear appropriate CrossFit shoes when doing CrossFit, the same goes for other exercises. Exercise will not only help you take your mind off problems that cause anxiety, but it will also lower your stress hormones, allow you to stay physically and mentally fit, increase your confidence and improve your sleep patterns.
Another useful way in which you can lower your stress levels is by changing certain elements of your diet like decreasing caffeine and increasing fruits and vegetable intake. Avocados and bananas, for instance, have enough potassium in them to reduce blood pressure. Swiss chard can balance cortisol levels in your body, which is known as the “stress hormone”. Nuts, on the other hand, can restore the vitamins you need to keep your immune system up, and different types of fish containing Omega-3s can help restore normal adrenaline levels. You should also try to eat during normal hours and set time aside to do so, which means not eating in front of your computer screen, standing up or while going from one place to another. Your body is your temple, and the better you treat it, the better you will feel overall.
Although we lead lives in which it is usually hard to take a step back and think about the things that happen to us, it is fundamental to make time to deal with complicated events and the effects they have on us. If we don’t face certain things now, they are likely to stick with us and affect us in the long run, so the sooner we try to handle stressful situations, the faster we will start healing and feeling well again. It’s also important to prioritize things because, as simple as that may sound, it can help us focus and save energy, keeping us from dealing with too much simultaneously. Learn to say no, spend time with your loved ones, talk to someone if you need to, eat well, exercise, read, travel or simply find the time to have a cup of tea while looking out the window and watch the autumn leaves fall off the trees. You will eventually realize that you can control stress instead of having it control you.