Stress is the leading cause of illness today, and yet there seems to be no way around it. Our jobs have become more and more demanding, with longer hours and shorter deadlines. Leaving less time for our families and even less time for ourselves. Guaranteed all of us at one time or another have felt the repercussions of stress to some degree; muscle tension in the neck and shoulders leading to headaches and migraines, high blood pressure and heart attacks to name a few. But how many of us actually take time for ourselves? Even setting aside an hour or two a week can drastically help to reduce stress. Join a book club, go to yoga, get a massage, do something for yourself for a change, something that you can look forward to from week to week. Here is list of things that can also help to reduce stress.
- Dance it out
- Go for a walk
- Talk about it
- Breathing exercises
- Go to bed earlier
- Focus on what you can control
- Reminisce about good times
- Ask for a hug
- Look for opportunities in life’s challenges
If none of these suggestions seem to work for you, then find something that does. Find something that you can get excited about, an activity that you look forward to from week to week.
Another key issue to decreasing stress is to actually step away from work when we are enjoying our stress free activities. How many of us have gone on vacation only to keep our cell phones on and respond to our email when we should be relaxing. Work will always be there but those precious moments of relaxation may not, so just for an hour or two a week step away from the computer, turn off the phone, and breathe.