Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Five Simple and Cheap Ways to Recover from Stress

Five Simple and Cheap Ways to Recover from Stress

We live in a stressed out society. According to an annual "Attitudes In The American Workplace VI" Gallup Poll, 80% of workers feel stress on the job, nearly half say they need help in learning how to manage stress. Stress has become one the largest problems in our society, and regularly costs US industries more than $300 billion per year.

With today's uncertain economy, more and more people are feeling stress, even if they don't acknowledge it. The good news is that you don't have to be stressed out, even if everyone else is. Here are five simple and cheap ways to recover from stress:

Move Your Body
Taking a brisk 5 minute walk outside can release endorphins (those make you feel happy), increase circulation to the brain so you can think more clearly, and reduce the adrenalin and cortisol produced by stress (adrenalin and cortisol cause your body to store lots of fat). Moving your body also tends to move your mind, according to the spiritual principle of "as above, so below," so you tend to feel more relaxed and creative afterward. Taking a quick walk could result in some unexpected inspiration!

Vent for Five Minutes
If you're really stressed and you need to vent your frustration or anger, set aside five minutes and write everything down. Set a timer for five minutes and go. Write down everything you're angry, sad, frustrated, grieving, or generally stressed about. This is your five minutes to cut loose. When the timer goes off, you'll feel better and be able to think more clearly. The key to making this technique work is to stay disciplined. Don't allow yourself to get frustrated outside of those 5 minutes, and don't let yourself vent for more than 5 minutes.

Feed Your Brain and Body
When you're under stress, your brain and body need more nutrients to function. Taking in whole food nutrients can actually get rid of stress. Try blue-green algae, chlorella, or another chlorophyll-rich source. Fruits and vegetables, especially if freshly-juiced, also make a great source of nutrient-dense food that your body can use without a lot of digestive effort.

Breathe
When you're under stress, you stop breathing deeply and regularly. Studies show that when you take conscious control of your breathing, your level of stress decreases. If you're breathing consciously, you won't be stressed. Take three minutes and just breathe. You'll be glad you did!

Take Action
If you're stressed because you've been procrastinating about something, get moving and take some action. Procrastination is one of the biggest sources of stress--and it's also one of the easiest to take care of. Taking action and completing tasks can radically reduce stress!

The last thing you need to do when you're stressed is add more items to your to-do list. Instead, make stress relief simple. Take 5 minutes out of your day, here and there, to de-stress your life. You don't need to pay for an expensive gym membership or visit a shrink. Just take a little time to decompress and you'll be surprised at the positive results.

Photo credit: Paula writes the diary

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