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Tips to Manage Your Stress

Posted Jan 17 2009 1:11am

Stress and tension are part of most people lives and threaten your health in many ways. Stress can come in the form of accidents, financial difficulties, problems at work, family issues, and poor health. The way to manage stress has a lot to do with your mental, emotional, and physical health. The following are some ways that you can manage the stress in your life:

Understand where your stress is coming from.

Examine your life and see if it is possible to make changes in the areas that are causing you stress.

Relaxaton techniques such as massage, deep breathing, meditation, or yoga may help to relieve your stress.

Exercise or other physical activity will help you deal with stress

Practice time management. Put your tasks into a priority list. When you make your list take into account yourself, your family, and your job. Using a check list will give you satisfaction when you complete a task.

Eat a healthy and balanced diet. Avoid sugar, fats, tobacco, caffeine, and alcohol as all of these items will put a strain on the way your body copes with stress.

Make sure that you get enough sleep and rest.

Find someone to talk to if things are bothering you. You can talk to family, friends or find a support group.

Volunteering can give you a sense of purpose and increase your self esteem and reduce your stress.

Relax by reading a book or watching a movie, listening to music or working at a hobby you enjoy.

Anger can be very stressful. Examine the causes and take action to remove them.

A short holiday will help you deal with stress.

Don’t take on too much at one time. Learn to take it easy.

Dont try to be perfect in everything that you do.

Try not to be too critical of others.

Always try to see the amusing side of any situation. Laughter is the best medicine.

Your neck and jaw are often the first to feel the effects of stress and tension. Moving your head from side to side and front to back will usually help. Also try rotating your neck in a circle slowly.

Set small and smart goals for yourself and then work carefully and realistically towards achieving them. Keep in mind that unrealistic goals never seem to be reached and this can add to your stress level. Try to set just goal for yourself this week by using the SMART approach:

SPECIFIC: Pick one small goal and write it down.

MEASURABLE: Is there a way to know when it is completed?

ACHIEVABLE: Make sure it is not too big.

REWARDED: When you have finished, how will you reward yourself

TIME-LIMITED: In order to be a SMART goal it must have a realistic finish date and time. Laugh at stress. Laughter is your body’s natural stress-release mechanism. Rent your favorite funny movie or record a TV show that you know makes you laugh. You can keep the recording on hand for those stress emergencies. Go to the library and borrow a book that you know will make you laugh. Or read the daily comics in the newspaper.

Cope with stress by going for a walk. If the stress is at work, go for a walk at lunchtime. Walking will give you time to look at the situation that is causing you a problem. Any other exercise will also help with stress relief.

Lillian F Tighe is an authority on healthy living and has written a book 10stepstohealthyliving which you can obtain for free on her healthyliving website

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