There are people who don’t smoke, drink, or consume junk food. Based on these facts, they think they are healthy. However, stress, though not tangible, is very harmful to your body. Go here to learn the dangers of stress.
While there are times to use de-stressing techniques, it’s best not to increase our stress levels in the first place.
Recently, some of my family member were discussing how high their stress levels were due to a situation in the family. One of my aunt’s husband’s wisely asked her what good would her stressing do?
One lesson God has taught me is that stressing about a situation will not help me or the situation. On the other hand, it can lead to serious health issues.
Here are seven ways that you can reduce your stress levels:
1. Turn off the news
News occasionally is positive, but most of it is about tornado damage in this part of the world, hurricanes, blizzards, wars, and other unpleasant things.
I’m not saying to never read or watch the news, but be careful how much of it you consume. If you are consuming several hours’ worth of news each day, your stress levels may increase.
2. Listen to soothing music
Yes, I realize that soothing music is not exactly popular, but listening to loud music can get your heart rate up and increase your stress levels.
Even marching band music can be enjoyable yet not helpful when you are already on the verge of stress.
3. Spend time in nature
The color green has been proven to reduce stress. Since it does, you can proactively avoid stress by being outside as much as possible. Even if you live in a cold, snowy climate, there are still evergreen trees.
Exercise has plenty of health benefits and helps to clear your mind and reduce stress and keep you healthy too.
If you are not exercising, begin with an excercise you enjoy. You do not need to work out for an hour at the gym right away.
5. Plan ahead
When I plan ahead, life is wonderful (most of the time). When I do not plan ahead, life becomes stressful and chaotic.
Here are some areas in which you can plan ahead:
- Meals (You will also eat healthier and avoid the drive-thru lane.)
- Bill paying (You will also avoid late fees.)
- Buying presents
6. Leave breathing room in your schedule.
My stress levels were the highest when I was working multiple jobs that gave me almost no time to rest or do anything I enjoyed.
However, even people with one job can become stressed by working overtime every day or by working seven days a week.
If you run yourself down, you will be stressed and sick and will not be able to help anyone else.
If you are not taking time off now, begin by taking even one hour to do something you enjoy. Gradually work the time to one day or even an entire weekend.
You can read a book, hike a favorite trail, assemble a puzzle, sew a quilt, or whatever else helps you to relax and recharge.
Prayer is one of the best ways to reduce stress since we can cast our burdens on God. We ask Him to do what we cannot.
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How do you reduce your stress levels? Please share in the comments below.