Stress less

Last Updated Jul 21, 2020

Stress less

We all experience stress at some point in our lives.  But stress can mean different things to different people. Richard Blonna, Ed.D, a nationally certified coach and counsellor and author explains that stress means ‘different things at different times to the same person. In other words, stress is very individual, and whether something becomes a stressor to you depends on a variety of variables.’

Here are 5 tips to destress at home or at work

1. Reorganize.

Reorganise your health and health habits.  This will provide you with more energy and will help you build resilience. Exercise will improve your physical functioning and it will help your brain to work better as well as feeling more refreshed.
Blonna says that you should aim to get at least 30 minutes of cardio four to five times a week. He says ‘physical wellbeing isn’t merely your health insurance, but [your] basic defence against stress.’

2. Rethink.

When people think that they have sufficient resources to deal with a stressor, they experience a challenge response. Challenge responses generally means an association with positive psychological and physiological outcomes.  In a study, those who were instructed to rethink stress as functional were able to recall more available resources and had improved cardiovascular functioning.  Conversely, when people perceive their resources to be lacking under stress, they experience a threat response and stress increases.  Threat responses have been shown to impair decision-making in the short-term.

3. Reduce.
Very often you may be stressed due to an overload of things you’re involved in. When you’re overwhelmed, fun things can lose their appeal and become stressors.

It is about coming to a balanced equilibrium and being able to say no to things that aren’t that important to you.

4. Relax.

It is important to practice clinically proven relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing or systematic muscle relaxation, for about 20 minutes a day during very stressful periods. While you won’t always have the time to devote to these techniques on a daily basis, it is important to make relaxation a priority.

5. Release.
Release the tension through mild, moderate and vigorous activities. Maybe in addition to your physical activity routine, you may need something more vigorous to release the tension.  Lifting weights or go on a brisk walk can be a good release mechanism.

Originally published on Jun 06, 2018

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills… There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind… So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself. — MARCUS AURELIUS
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