Stress is the number one reason clients come to see me for Psychotherapy. Work stress, relationship stress, health, family, financial, emotional, and spiritual. Stress shows up in eating too much, too little, drinking too much, irritability, short-tempers, lack of interest in life, hopelessness, despair , fatigue, sleeping too much and negative self talk among many other symptoms. All of these symptoms are information that you out of alignment and need an adjustment. All you know right now is that what you are currently doing isn’t working.
Here’s my Top 3 easy to implement and proven treatments for Stress Relief. All are easy to access and free!!!
The# 1 cure for stress is sleep. It’s nature’s way of restoring energy to get you through another day. But here’s the cruelest trick of nature. Stress interferes with sleep! So how are you supposed to get to sleep to recover from stress when stress is keeping you awake? AUGH!!!
Start with good sleep hygiene.
· Establish rituals. Go to bed around the same time nightly.
· Eat or exercise 3 hours prior to bedtime only
· Have a light snack of “sleepy” foods before bed ( almonds, cherries, bananas and dairy are all good)
· No electronics in bed!
· If needed, try a power nap. Research has shown that a nap can lead to better efficiency, patience and improved health.
· Be kind to yourself. Patience is needed to establish new habits. It takes time.
2. MEDITATION *PERSONAL FAVORITE*
I know what you are thinking… “I can’t do this, I can’t stop thinking”. Meditation is not about “emptying your mind” of thoughts. This is nearly impossible. Meditation is easy if you are taught correctly. Most of us think about 60,000 thoughts a day and the mind is designed to think. Let’s imagine that you are only trying to achieve gaining a space between your thoughts and learning to let thoughts pass without attaching any story to them. Does this help? Mediation is an ancient practice designed to restore peace and calm to your busy lives. Begin with breath.
· Start with taking 3 conscious breaths.
· Feel the cool air on the inhale and the warmed breath on the exhale.
· Notice how focus on the breath slows down all your thoughts.
· Do this 4x a day for one minute. One minute of meditation can begin to change the relationship with your thoughts.
· Get a Meditation Teacher. I can help with this!
3. SPEND TIME IN NATURE
John Burroughs said “I go to nature to be soothed and healed and to have my senses put in order”. Nature leads us to appreciate the grander sense of the world. Taking a walk has been shown to decrease depression, improve self esteem and decrease physical tension. Nature speaks to our soul; we find nature to be naturally interesting! We pay attention! !t takes us away from the busyness of our minds as we focus our attention on the world around us. Laboratory studies show that our brain function increases in the areas of love and well-being when we spend time in nature. Nature restores us to sanity.
· Walk around the block every day, or to the corner and back. Distance isn’t the point. Go outside.
· Park farther away. Take your time.
· Each time you go outside take a breath and notice before you must be on your way. Feel the sun, breeze, temperature. Just notice. What are you hearing and seeing? Take your time.
Do these 3 everyday. Or one!! Just start with one! You can do this! I have faith in you!
Yup...Simple and effective.
Robin The Meditation Addict