Stress Awareness Month

Trying to balance life is one of the greatest struggles of all time. How, exactly, am I supposed to go to work, get 8 hours of sleep, drink eight glasses of water, workout, date, hang out with friends, eat, meditate, be creative and philanthropic, shower, shave, and still have time for family, or even myself?

Photo by Anna Shvets

In the struggle to manage my stress, I turned to The American Institute of Stress, because WE (Americans) are the most stressed people, and did a little digging. It turns out, a guy named Hans had things kind of figured out back in 1936. And as much as I would love to give you a full review of the study, I will just let you read it here. Basically, there are stages to stress, and how you perceive and interpret these stages determines how the body adapts to it and how you “react”. Think of it this way:

Harmful = Distress = Disease

Positive = Eustress = Euphoria

We all feel some stress in one way or another, from small wins, new connections, and promotions to sudden routine changes, the daily cost of living, and workplace stress. A little daily stress is healthy, but we should be concerned when it begins to impacts our emotional and physical health. If stress goes unmanaged, it can manifest within the body as symptoms, including headaches, insomnia, anger, digestive issues, chronic pain, high blood pressure, anxiety, and more. The way you handle stress should be more important than the actual stress.

Since we’re all in this together, maybe not the same boat but the same journey, I found a few ways we can combat stress and rewire our bodies to respond in a more balanced approach. Check them out and let me know what your favorite method is in the comment below!! 

How to Fight Stress:

  1. Exercise – Endorphins flood the brain for that happy feeling we all deserve but also lowers cortisol, a.k.a. The stress hormone! Heck yes!! 
  2. Vitamins and Supplements – Vitamin D, Omega 3, Ashwagandha, and Essential oils like Ylang Ylang, Eucalyptus, and Lavender
  3. PUT DOWN THE COFFEE!! – Don’t go cold turkey, but maybe only 1 or 2 cups hun. 
  4. Laugh it Out – Ironically, April is also National Humor Month…..Do something you love, spend time with friends or family, watch a favorite movie
  5. Journal Your Journey – Throw on some tunes, grab a glass of wine and write it out. Let the tears flow if it feels good! A good old daily diary never hurt either.
  6. Explore Your Neighborhood – find a new coffee shop, park, tourist attraction near you and make a new friend
  7. Try a Group Activity – Try the new yoga studio in town, volunteer at the dog shelter or food kitchen. 
  8. Phone Apps – I joined Happify for daily meditation reminders and other mindful resources. 

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