30 Ways to De-Stress During National Stress Awareness Month!

April is National Stress Awareness Month and that makes it the perfect time get serious about kicking stress out of your life. Here are thirty ways you can de-stress your life in the next thirty days.

national stress awareness monthDay One: Pop a piece of dark chocolate. Antioxidants and deliciousness! For more de-stressing power add as many as possible of these 12 super foods to your diet!

Day Two: Give someone a compliment. Making others feel good can help you feel good, too. There’s nothing like the good vibes you’ll feel when you make someone else smile.

Day Three: Swap soda or coffee for decaffeinated green tea with lemon ( or any other herbal tea). It cleanses your body and energizes you naturally.  It’s like getting stress relief in a cup!

Day Four: Meditate. Just close your eyes and spend two minutes clearing your mind.

Day Five: Do some yoga. There are lots of yoga videos for free online. Pick an easy one and just try it! You’ll be amazed by how quickly physical stress washes away.

Day Six: Get to bed earlier. Adjust your nightly routine so you get a few more hours of sleep.

Day Seven: Relax with some hot towels, soaked in hot water and maybe even some essential oils.  Just one day of pampering yourself could be exactly what you need to destress.

Day Eight: Stop trying to multitask. No matter how good you are at it, give your brain a rest by picking and focusing on one task.

Day Nine: Relax your face. Give your face muscles extra attention today. If you feel yourself frowning or wrinkling your brow, let your expression go slack. Fewer headaches!

Day Ten: Write it down. Write down what’s stressing you out today. Your family? Your work? Start journaling your stress away, one word at a time!

Day Eleven: Switch up your lunch. Instead of a stale sandwich out of the vending machine, try making a salad with lots of colorful vegetables!  After all, you are what you eat!  Click here to find out how to make it matter!

Day Twelve: Take a lengthy aromatherapy bath. Light your favorite candles, add your favorite essential oil, and just soak in the warm water.

Day Thirteen: Find a scenic vista. Take the long way home and give yourself a moment to enjoy the beauty of your surroundings, whether they be city or country.

Day Fourteen: If you’re going to be stuck at your desk all day, do some desk exercises. Stretch your arms, legs, and neck so you don’t get sore and fatigued. Don’t forget to get up and walk around at least once an hour!

Day Fifteen: Do meal prep. Meal prep isn’t just for fitness junkies. Taking some time tonight to prepare a few freezer meals and stashing them for the rest of the week can help de-stress the cooking process.

Day Sixteen: Organize the business of your home. Whether or not you realize it, your home is a business just as much as your actual business is. Make a home binder that contains not just your important documents, but also your weekly meal plans, cleaning schedule and budget.  Click here for more cleaning and home organization tips!

Day Seventeen: Adopt a plant. Getting something green into your space is never a bad idea. Find a plant you love and make it part of your family. Better yet, if you have a backyard, transform it into your center for nutrition, exercise and stress relief!

Day Eighteen: Outsource your errands. If trying to get to the grocery store is an overwhelming thought, hire someone else to do it, or your laundry, or cleaning and de-cluttering the house or cleaning out your garage.

Day Nineteen: Hug the people you love and spend quality time with your family and loved ones! Just do it, it’ll make you feel good.

Day Twenty: Soak your feet. When you get home from a long day, fill your bathtub ( or this footbath)  with some warm (or cool, if the day has been hot) water and soak those aching, overworked feet.  This Johnson’s foot soap will help soak away all your foot misery!

Day Twenty-One: Reminisce. Pull out your photo albums and look at pictures of your favorite people and memories.

Day Twenty-Two: Schedule yourself some time off today. Make a schedule for today and make sure to give yourself some breaks. Finding “Me-Time” is easier than you think!

Day Twenty-Three: Make tomorrow’s to-do list. If you’ve got things on your mind that you know you want to get done tomorrow, make yourself a to-do list today so nothing falls through the cracks and you can stop worrying about it. If you always feel stressed and pressed for time, check out this great resource!

Day Twenty-Four: Work it out and take a daily dose of exercise. Don’t let tiredness or busy-ness get in the way of having your daily workout.  A walk a day could keep the doctor away!  Still not convinced, take a look at this video on the health benefits of walking!

Day Twenty-Five: Get your Omega-3s. Plan a meal with salmon, sprinkle some flax over your salad, or put a few walnuts in your pocket for a snack.

Day Twenty-Six: Massage your hands with some natural lotion. Work out any tension and moisturize your skin.

Day Twenty-Seven: Pump the tunes. Play your favorite album and dance in your living room. Play, dance and sing your way to less stress this month, or just relax on your couch to some soothing music.  This music CD is the perfect antidote for our daily stressful lives.

Day Twenty-Eight: Laugh it up. Watch a funny television show, a comedy routine, or just silly internet videos that make you smile.  Laughter is GOOD for stress relief!

Day Twenty-Nine: Go for a walk. This doesn’t have to be your workout, but do get outside for a while today. Click here to find out if you walk enough!

Day Thirty: Accept your imperfections and the imperfections of others! You aren’t perfect and life isn’t perfect. Instead of fighting your imperfections, accept them and learn to live a happy, stress-resilient lifestyle anyway!

There you go: thirty ways to de-stress during the next thirty days!

Please Share Your Thoughts 

In the comments below, share with us:

1. What de-stress tips can you add to the list?
2. What chronic stressor would really want to de-stress from this month?

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How to Cultivate a “Relaxation Response” During Stressful Life Events

TensionHeadacheWhen you are experiencing stressful life events, you may feel that there is nothing you can do to combat the stress and anxiety that you are feeling on a regular basis.

You see others living their happy lives, motoring along without a care in the world, while you might feel weighted under the stress of your everyday life or shackled by major stressful life events.

Whether it is the stress of a divorce,  a job loss, debt, or the death of a loved one, there are many situations which can seem to swallow your life whole and become a vortex of stress and anxiety, tainting even the positive and happy things in your life.

This is when cultivating a relaxation response to overpower your stress response, can be extremely beneficial.

Stress occurs when our bodies or minds feel threatened or overtaxed. Some stress ensures that our body is working properly and that we can actively avoid real dangers in our everyday lives. When you want to feel stress is when that car drifts into your lane—you need that stress response in order to be able to swerve out of the way before it hits you. This is an appropriate time to feel stress—during your normal life, on an everyday basis is not a normal time to feel stress, though many people experience this.

You might think that there is nothing you can do about this constant, everyday anxiety and stress, because the situation causing it is not going to just go away. There are ways to help deal with that stress, however, that can lower your overall level of stress and help you create a less anxious and more fulfilling life. Here’s how to cultivate a relaxation response to combat your stress response caused by a stressful life situation.

  1. Invest in aromatherapy. Aromatherapy can be seriously helpful for women who are experiencing consistent stress. This injects a soothing scent into your life, which can help to calm the body every time you smell it. Oil diffusers make it easy to have powerful essential oil scents filling your home at any given time. All you have to do is make sure that the diffuser is on and filled with your favorite oil and you can instantly feel less stressed. How does aromatherapy work? There are certain scents that elicit calm in the body—these may vary from person to person, but most people respond well to lavender, vanilla, sandalwood, and chamomile.
  1. Listen to calming music. You already know the effect that music has on your body. Loud, boisterous music can make you feel amped up and excited. Raucous music can make you feel more stressed out. Calming music or even guided meditation can help you block out stressors and feel calm and serene. When you feel a wave of stress coming on, putting on your favorite CD of calming music or a guided meditation, can help ensure that the stress does not overwhelm you.
  1. Try a sleep machine and a wakeup light. One of the biggest complaints of those who have too much stress in their lives is that they find it difficult to sleep. Luckily, there is a pretty simple solution to this problem that doesn’t necessarily include taking a sleep aid. A sleep machine is a sound therapy system that provides soothing sounds and tones to help lull the body to sleep. Most machines allow you to pick from a variety of different sound tracks, so you can find the one that makes your sleeping space as soothing as possible. On the other end of sleep, a wakeup light can combat that stress of being ripped from sleep by a loud alarm clock.
  1. Find ways to eliminate the physical side effects of stress. Stress has very real physical side effects, from beck and back pain, to aches and even physical sickness. If you can find a neck massager the wear throughout the day to fight neck pain, do it. If you can take a few minutes to use an acupressure set to relieve back pain, do it. A shiatsu massage pillow can go just about anywhere and provide instant back pain relief, as can a massage cushion.

How to Find Peace in the Middle of Major Life Stressors

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When faced with major life stressors, extreme stress and personal crisis, it’s essential to take a step back to find peace.  Find out how!

If you don’t find peace within the chaos, you’ll soon be leading a stressful and unfulfilling life. While you may want to achieve as much as you can, you surely don’t want to lose yourself or your sanity in the process.

Tips For Finding The Peace

Follow these tips to reduce the stress in your life so you can find some peace:

  1. Trim your schedule. If you find that you’re taking on too much, it’s time to go over your schedule and drop what needs to go. It’s hard to admit that you don’t have superpowers sometimes, so you must concentrate on giving yourself a manageable schedule.
  1. Get organized. When your life feels chaotic, it’s probably disorganized. You’ll feel out of whack and as if you don’t even know which end is up. You can combat this feeling by staying organized, keeping lists, and valuing your time. You can still take on a lot, but only if you’ve got an organized plan in place!
  1. Plan an escape. Whether you need to get away from an ongoing busy life, or one chaotic situation, you have to give yourself an escape from time to time.
  • Plan a mini vacation or give yourself an evening if you’re short of time. The point is that you need to make some time for yourself.
  • Read a book, indulge in aromatherapy, or play a video game, but do something that allows you to unwind.
  1. Pace yourself. One way to manage chaos in a healthy way is to properly pace yourself. You need to preserve your energy so you can make it through the day. Doing so allows you to keep a clear head and rejuvenate your mind.
  1. Practice a peaceful activity. One easy way to maintain some peace is to take up a peaceful and relaxing activity. Consider going to a yoga class or trying walking for stress relief. These acts are not only relaxing, but they also allow you to adapt your thinking so you can regularly achieve a peaceful mindset.
  1. Accept your situation. A major life upheaval can be overwhelming or even depressing at times. Instead of promising yourself a better life in the future once the chaos is gone, you can give yourself one right now. Accept that your life is in a chaotic state, but take the big step toward finding peace.

Find What Works For You

Most importantly, focus on slowing down, simplifying your life, and allowing yourself the chance to fix the imbalance you might be experiencing.

Even a small effort can help you in a big way. If you’re taking the time to find peace, you can also create your personal definition of that peace. That might be finding a person who can help you unload your problems, or perhaps you might enjoy journaling or reading self help books.

Whatever is peaceful for you, do it on a regular basis – for you and for those you love.

Tell Us What Works For You

In the comments below, share with us:

1. Has exercise worked for you to relieve stress in the past?
2. What other methods have you tried for stress relief?