We all know that stress is a part of life. Some stress is even necessary and can be beneficial. However, prolonged stress can be detrimental to our physical and mental health. Here are some quick and healthy ways to manage your stress.

*Is the thing that is causing you stress real or perceived? In other words, are you just assuming something bad might happen, causing all sorts of unnecessary stress? Figure out the source of your stress and whether or not it’s actually worth stressing about. Many times, it’s not.

*Ask yourself, “Can I control this?” Is the stress coming from something that is totally out of your control (weather, the way others behave, etc.)? Focus on the things you CAN control, like your response to the stressor and try to let go of those things that are out of your control.

*Deep Breathing is a great way to relieve stress in the moment. When you’re feeling overwhelmed, stop and take some deep breaths. Be mindful to count to at least 4 as you’re slowing breathing in. It can sometimes be helpful to hold your breath for a few seconds before slowly releasing your breath with another count to 4. As you’re exhaling, picture all the tension being released from your body. Many people find starting their day with some deep breathing to be extremely beneficial. Get yourself in a comfortable, relaxed position. As you take your breath, you should feel your belly move, not just your chest. This can often release a lot of emotions, so do not be surprised if you cry. Let the tears flow, do not try to stop them.

*Journaling can be a wonderful outlet for your stress. I like to start my day by writing in a gratitude journal. Pick 2 or 3 things you are grateful for every morning and write them down. That starts your day on a positive note. Then at the end of the day, write down anything that caused you stress, how you handled it, and what you learned from it. Then be sure to look at your gratitude statements so you’re ending the day on a positive note too.

*Exercise is the best medicine for so many things, including stress. It can be something as simple as going for a walk or something super intense like powerlifting (and everything in between). Whatever your preferred method of exercise is, try to incorporate some type of exercise into your day.

*Self-care is a term that has gotten a lot of attention lately. That’s because it is SO important. Self-care is different for everyone but it’s something we all need to make sure we’re practicing. It can be a monthly massage, getting your nails done, listening to music, lighting candles and taking a bath…whatever works to calm you and bring you inner peace. Carve out some time in your life for some self-care.

*Ask for help when you need it! Life is stressful. You do not have to suffer in silence. Reach out to your loved ones for support or give us a call and we would be happy to help you!

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