Stress is a necessary part of life for us all. We need stress for our very survival. Stress is only harmful when it becomes overwhelming and interrupts the healthy state of our nervous system’s ability to remain in balance. Unfortunately, overwhelming stress has become an increasingly common characteristic of our daily lives. When stress throws our nervous system out of balance, relaxation techniques can bring it back into balance, by producing the relaxation response, a state of calmness that is opposite to the stress response.
When stress overwhelms the nervous system the body is flooded with chemicals preparing us for the “fight or flight”. Certainly the stress response can be lifesaving in emergency situations where we may need to act quickly, it adds wear and tear to the body when it is constantly activated by the stress of everyday life.
The relaxation response puts the brakes on this heightened state and brings the body and mind back into a state of balance.
Tips for managing stress Includes: Get a good night’s rest – sleeping 8 hours at night helps to heal the body and sets the stage for a balanced lifestyle
Eating healthily – an eating plan of clean foods serves to balance the body’s chemistry Listen to your favorite music – like the right foods, music the right music can reset brain waves and allow the brain and mind to function at optimum levels. Careful what you feed your mind.
Exercise – participating in a sport or in a fun activity allows the body It’s greatest pleasure: movement. This movement adds the strength and flexibility to health of the physical body.
Make time for important tasks and important occasions in life. Set out your priorities. If you don’t the time just slips away and, then what?
Talk to a friend about your problems, don’t hold it in. Don’t have a trusted confidant? Write it out. If you need to, burn it later. But, get it out of you!
Indulge in a massage – This is body work that works. A massage is a great way to let go and enjoy a relaxing ritual.
Enjoy a good daydream – Remember when you were a child?, daydreaming about a wonderful future when we would be all grownup and on our own, is what filled our minds. Go back to dreaming about a wonderful life again. If you can see it, you can be it.
Take a warm bath – a bath with Epson salts, candle light, music and an open mind. Drown the stress in this self indulgent treat. Read a book – Books are a great tool for inspiring a new life. Travel, career, a new lifestyle, new horizons. Whatever you can image is open to you.
The idea is to let stress work to your advantage. It’s there when you need it and controlled by you when it needs to be turned off.
Un-managed stress wears out your bodies systems, inhibits reasoning, interferes with digestion, circulation and can lead to heart damage, heart attack, diabetes, stroke and many other disabilities, unnecessarily. But you are the master of your fate, so take these tips and incorporate them into your daily life to ‘come down’ during the day and certainly at days end.
Carolyn Guilford is a nutrition consultant, health and wellness advocate, author and workshop organizer. Several of her publications are available in the Kindle format at www.amazon.com/author/carolynguilford She holds monthly forums at the Bull Street Public Library, which are free and open to all. If you have a question you’d like answered in ‘Toward True Health’ Please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Call to reserve your spot in our April diabetes class by calling 912-236- 8987, ‘Like’ us on Facebook and get new health tips www.facebook.com/healthrestoration101 or write to Health Restoration Consulting Post Office Box 2814, Savannah, GA 31402.