Stress Stoppers, Pt. II

November 11, 2009

Stress Stoppers, Pt. II

More Ideas For Controlling Stress

(Continued from November 3rd Blog Entry)


6. Be A Good Neighbor!
Focusing on someone else’s needs can help to get your mind off your own problems for a while.

Tip: Visit a shut-in.  If there is an elderly person who lives alone in your neighborhood, buy an inexpensive bouquet of flowers for them and stop by for a visit.  No doubt, you will make their day (and probably yours too.)

Volunteer for a local charity of your choice.  Serve hot meals to the homeless, spend some time helping out at the local animal shelter, or read books to the kindergarten class at school.   There are numerous opportunities available to brighten someone else’s day.  If you have trouble locating an opportunity, check with your church.  They’ll likely be able to point you in the direction of someone in need of a helping hand.

7. Put That Adrenaline to Good Use!

Does stress have you feeling like you could crawl out of your own skin?   Are you overwhelmed with nervous energy, or feelings of anger toward your situation?  Use that negative energy to attain a positive goal.  Tackle a task you’ve been avoiding, such as cleaning out that closet or garage.
Tip: Gather unwanted items together and organize a yard sale, or donate them to a thrift store or homeless shelter.

8. Breathe In, Breathe Out!

If you’ve ever given birth, chances are you were taught some form of breathing techniques to help your body relax during contractions.   Similar exercises can also aid in regaining control of your body’s reaction to more familiar stress.  You can do this anywhere, even at your desk amid all the chaos of the workplace.

Tip: Relax your shoulders and neck.  Breath in slowly through your nose for a count of seven, then exhale through your mouth for a count of eleven. Repeat this several times over. It will slow down your racing heart and lower your blood pressure.  As a result, you will feel more calm and in control of your situation.

9. Take It Outside!

It helps to simply remove yourself from the stressful environment, even if only for a few moments.  Take a brisk walk, or just step outside into the sunshine.  A brief change  of scenery will boost your mood and help clear your mind.

Tip: When the weather is nice, take your breaks and lunch outside.  You’ll feel like you’re miles away from the office.  If for some reason you can’t go outdoors,  make it a point to leave your work area for a few minutes several times a day.  You may be surprised at the difference it makes.

10. Reward yourself!

During times of stress, you may begin to feel you have nothing to look forward to.   That can lead to potentially dangerous complications, such as depression.  Promise yourself you are going to indulge in a special activity you enjoy, and set a date or time to do it.  Don’t cancel your plans, it’s important to keep this promise to yourself.  Reminding yourself that you’re going to have a break in your stressful routine can help considerably!

Tip: Take yourself to dinner at your favorite restaurant or buy yourself that great pair of shoes you’ve been dying to have. (As long as you know that spending a little extra money won’t add to your stress afterward.)   Treat yourself  to an ice cream cone, a day at the lake, an afternoon at the park, or your favorite movie.   Anything goes as long as it’s something special you can feel excited about and look forward to.

BONUS:

11. Keep The Faith!

Prayer, or talking to God is a great form of stress relief for those who believe.  It helps to know there is a Supreme being, one who is all-knowing and powerful, yet still cares deeply about our individual needs.  This knowledge ultimately gives us hope and the strength to carry on during times of stress.  In fact, studies have shown that people with deep religious beliefs are better able to cope with stress than their counterparts who do not hold any particular religious beliefs.

Tip: Talk to God.  You don’t need a script.  There are no “magic” words or prayers you need to memorize in order to get His attention.  Just talk to Him as if He was sitting right beside you (because He actually is!)  He is listening and He cares!

I leave you with this scripture from Philippians 4:6.  “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your request to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus”

God bless!

Becky Taylor

11/11/09

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