Reducing stress

So many of us have the tools to reduce stress, This is something I work on and forget to practice sometimes. Knowing something and not using it does not help. 

We need to use our skills before we are stressed to know how they work and feel.

If you are in a constant state of stress it can have negative effects on your health, it changes our hormones. Please get help if you have tried the things below and they are not aiding in the calm

Distraction helps to redirect the stress energy, it can also help with the stress of pain. When using distraction it should be used as a temporary focus, not become a 24/7 thing. I use gaming and chores. My garden is also a great distraction.

Watch a funny movie/show, laughter is medicine

Turn on music that inspires you to feel happy.

 Healthy deep sleep can help to reduce stress. Too much sleep can become a hurdle in doing brain work if you are so stressed, sad or depressed that you sleep all the time or have so little sleep that you are sleep deprived. Many different studies make different claims to what is the right amount of sleep. Some say 6 some say as much as 10 hours in a 24 hour time frame.

Teas that can help lower stress

  • Lavender – May Help Improve Sleep, may offer a natural remedy for pain, lessens menopausal hot flashes * Be mindful it should not be used with people that have low blood pressure; it helps to lower blood pressure.
  • Camomile, reducing inflammation, helping with sleep and relaxation
  • Lemon Balm, may boost your cognitive functions, reduce seasonal allergies, help with gut and digestive problems, help reducing headaches 

Plants can have the ability to bring calmer feelings and better health. 

Supplements

  • Ashwagandha, an evergreen from India. I once read it was used for stressed mothers in tribes. I have used a stress complex with this in it for years to help deal with a busy brain that found so much stress. 
  • Valerian, sedative on the nervous system. Promotes good sleep, helps to reduce anxiety. Not suited for people with liver problems, pregnant or nursing parents or children under 3.
  • Passionflower, help with insomnia, pre surgery stress, aid in withdrawal.

There are so many teas, herbs and plants that can aid in stress reduction. I could not cover them all in this week’s blog, I try to keep this to something you can read while drinking a hot beverage. I don’t want to lose my readers with a topic that is too long. If you have any questions feel free to post. I will do my best to answer your questions and comments.

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, is a technique to help with stress, anxiety, additions, fear, panic attacks, pain and other things that block our psychiatric paths in our brain. It helps you to rethink, redirect and refocus things and ideas that create stress for us. CBT is a process of learning and practicing your new tools, it is a lot of working with knowledgeable trained people to redirect the negative impacts of or harmful thinking.

Breathing when you breathe deeply it helps to open muscles, to allow the clean new oxygen in and as you breathe out old negative air leaves. There are many styles of breathing. Because we are all different we need to find a style that benefits us.

  • Square breathing (box breathing) inhale for the count of 4, hold the breath for the count of 4, exhale for the count of 4 and rest for 4 more.

Breathing can be very helpful if you have asthma. People with the stress of asthma can try blocking one nostril and breathing gently until you lungs feel full then breathe out the air slowly and change to block the other nostril then repeat the breathing with only one nostril blocked at a time. If you need other breathing you can look up breathing to reduce stress.

Exercise, if you are someone that likes a good workout, that is a great time to do your routine. If you have health conditions, or are new to being physical, take things slow and easy. If you have a physiotherapist or a trainer you can have some guidance. If you don’t have someone to oversee how you and your body are working, try light stretches or look up chair yoga

Eating regular healthy meals helps by keeping blood sugars levels stable. Keeping healthy low sugar foods in your body helps the body to reduce stress hormones. Sometimes if we struggle with food sensitivities or eating disorders food can create stress. This is when your mind needs someone trained in your food challenges. Try to have a little something that you know will not make you feel worse.

Water helps to hydrate you. A hydrated body is one that is processing better, it helps reduce the toxins that build up as well as lets vitamins and nutrients flow to all the organs including the brain. We are made up of a lot of fluid so we need non sugar and caffeinated beverages to function and heal . If you are on a reduced fluid intake, find out how much water you can safely have a day. Try to have 8oz or one cup every 1 1/2 hours. If you are up for 12 hours that should get you about 8 cups of water a day. You can have more and if you are active or it is hot have a 8oz to 10oz  every hour

If you are going to take any natural stuff to help reduce or cope with stress, take time to talk to your medical professional and let your pharmacist know too. Many things we take such as tea and herbal medication can have contraindication (bad effects) when taken together.

Take time to relax, enjoy life and enjoy fresh air. I would love to read about how you have learned to reduce your stress. We need connection, stress is very hard to manage. Sharing might help someone through the stress they are going through. Send a note about what makes you laugh or smile. Hope your week goes well.

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