Stress – A constant struggle in my life, as well as many people in our world, especially in terms of trying to lessen it or release it completely from one’s life. Stress is about one of the hardest things for me to conquer, as I find that my mind is the most difficult part of me to controI. My food journey has already taught me so much, now I am on a journey to learn how to reduce stress, and not allow it to control or alter my physical and mental state. This can be harmful to your heart health and put you at risk for health troubles such as digestive problems, high blood pressure, headaches and much more.
I have finally come to terms that I will always be in a constant fight to not be overwhelmed, but it’s what you do to make yourself feel at your best, even if you may feel at your worst. Stress is something that frightens me, for the fact that it can and has always affected me negatively physically and emotionally.
Most times I tell myself, “but I don’t feel stressed”, and later can feel myself internally burning up to a point where I can no longer concentrate. Sometimes, my entire body shuts down to a point where I feel numb. My anxiety plays a huge role in causing this and the vicious cycle will repeat itself. So, what can we do to manage our stress?
My “Ah-ha” moment had finally hit me one day and I am so thankful it did. As soon as I started to create a healthier lifestyle and include a fitness regime as a priority in my life, I started to feel a change. The more weights I lifted and the more I put my body through in the gym, the better I started to feel. It was as if the more weights I lifted, took the stress away and made my shoulders lighter. Things started to change. After each workout, my mind felt clear and the physical training had my mind and body working in a more positive way. This made me feel more relaxed, more focused, more like myself. I still have a lot to overcome but this has made me stay more consistent on my journey and learn better ways to manage my stress.
Here are a few tips on how you can reduce stress:
Move More. Find your fitness passion and what makes you want to “move more”. Physical fitness not only is great for your health, but it also increases your overall mood.
Make a list. We all have a lot going on in our lives, whether personal or professional. Write a list everyday and check off your items as you accomplish them. Completing those tasks will put your mind at ease throughout the day.
Get enough sleep. Turn off the TV and get into bed early! Feeling well rested can lead to a healthier, happier, more focused YOU!
Laugh a little. Take a coworker to lunch, walk around the neighborhood and catch up with a friend, or simply just make a phone call. Laughing gives you a break from reality and increases your positive mood.
For more tips on managing stress, and to take the steps to be healthy for good, visit heart.org.
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