When we’re stressed we overeat. We have a hard time sleeping. These reactionary ways of dealing with stress are usually automatic — and they put even more stress on your body in the long run. But you can take a proactive approach to stress management this holiday. Try one or more of these five steps I’ve seen help my clients the most:
1. Find an exercise program you enjoy doing. If you actually enjoy the workout, part of the stress relief has already taken place. Create, or get help creating, a program based on 2-3 resistance or weight workouts per week and 3-5 cardio workouts.
2. Start doing breathing exercises 2-3 times a day. Breathing is the only voluntary action (that we can control) that helps calm the nervous system physiologically. It helps the body find balance in stressful situations.
3. Meditate a few times a week. It can be a guided meditation, or it can be simply quietly sitting while listening your favorite music or in any quiet place. It doesn’t have to be more mysterious than that.
4. Delete unhealthy foods from your diet. This means processed foods, refined sugars, too much caffeine, etc. They’re stressful for your entire system. Treat your body well with healing foods such as fresh organic fruits and vegetables and lean meats. And boost your metabolism by eating small meals every three hours.
5. Give to others. One of the most powerful ways to heal yourself, get stress relief and feel joy is to give, give, give. Whether you choose to support good causes, lend an ear to someone in need or open the door to your fellow man, they key is to give an every-day gift!
Get out there and Live as Loud as you can!!