Stress No More – Live Better Now and Every Day
Stress is never “just stress.” It can have a choke hold on you. While everything in life is ultimately temporary, the effects of stress and anxiety can cause you to suffer not only in the now but for a whole lifetime. Your mind, your body, your skin, all take a toll, making you look and feel older, faster.
It need not be like this – even during a crisis, there's another way. Here we share a set of understandings and practices that can help you live better now and every day.
Let the present and future to co-exist
At any moment in time, there are disasters happening in the world. And sometimes in your own life, too. It may be very hard to tolerate unpleasant or downright tragic developments. But where you are today is not evidence of failure or defeat. It’s merely a point, a plot twist, in a series of plots that make your life story.
Instead of focusing only on where you are and the draining effort required to move forward, let what you are capable of today coexist in your mind with the as yet unrealized potential of the future. Let the future reveal itself to you with less resistance. Be open to the idea that things can unfold differently than what your anxious mind predicts. You’ll be able to transcend what holds you back and expand your skills only if you fully accept the current imperfection of it all. Remember, it’s just a plot twist.
Do you know the difference between anxiety and excitement? Breathing. When we are anxious, we pull back from life, we limit our breath. When we are excited, we move into life, with more breath. Slow, deep, conscious breathing can help you to gather your strength and move into life as an active participant. Instead of experiencing life as something that’s happening to you, deep breathing can help you to happen to life.
- Take at least twenty minutes daily to sit down with your eyes closed in a quiet place and breathe slowly and deeply. It’s so simple, yet so effective. Think it’s boring? Look for free online meditations to listen to as you focus on your breathing.
- Avoid caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, drugs, and processed sugar to keep your mind and body calm. These substances affect not just the way you feel but also the way you look.
- Connect with people. True human connection is irreplaceable. Allow yourself to experience other people and allow them to experience you, even in your most stressful moments. Be vulnerable together.
- Get moving. The body is built to move. If you’re tight on money, look up free exercise videos online. (If you have health concerns, talk to your doctor first).
- Create routines and stick to them. This can be a daily sleep routine, a skincare routine, an exercise routine. Having schedules and daily plans will help you to feel in control.
- Treat yourself to something nice without feeling guilty. This can be something as simple as a sumptuous body wash or body mud to create a spa-feel in your bathroom.
American Heart Association: Fight Stress with Healthy Habits Infographic
American Heart Association: Lower Stress: How does stress affect the body?
Huffington Post: The Best And Worst Foods To Eat When You're Stressed
Eating Well: 7 Foods that Secretly Stress You Out