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Great Ways to Reduce Stress
You have probably heard about the need to manage stress. Too much stress is hard on the body and mind. Stress affects everything from how well you sleep to how you digest food. Dr. Andrew Weil, author and physician, stated that a calm and relaxed body and mind are less prone to health issues.
There are many simple but effective tips to reduce stress for women. When you see yourself becoming stressed, having too much tension in muscle areas around the neck and shoulders, perhaps having stomach discomfort or headaches after stressful situations, here are some tips for reducing that stress.
Step 1: Breathe
Many studies on meditation, breathing and stress support breathing as an excellent stress management tool for women. Simply take perhaps 10 minutes and focus on your breath wherever you are. If you cannot lie down for this, sit as comfortably as possible. If you are reducing stress at work, consider hanging a "Do Not Disturb" sign on the door or cube entrance during your break.
- Close your eyes and begin breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth.
- As you breathe in, tense a muscle.
- As you breathe out, relax that muscle.
- Start with the muscles in your face and move down to your neck, shoulders, arms, chest and so forth. Tense and release muscle areas through the body all the way to your feet.
Step 2: Practice self-massage
Massage therapy research by the University of Miami indicates that a quick and effective way to reduce stress is to massage noticeably tense areas in your body while maintaining a relaxed position. Combine this technique with the previous instruction to calm and refocus your mind while gently kneading the areas that are tense. Removing tension in the body helps to remove it in the mind as well. It works both ways. To reach areas such as the middle of the back, you may want to purchase a hand-held roller-type massager with a long handle.
Step 3: Exercise
If you do not like rigorous exercise, Prevention Magazine suggests another great and simple way to reduce stress is to walk. Walk the aisles at work. Walk the staircase. Walk outside when weather permits. In addition to lowering stress, walking improves circulation, aiding in digestion and mental acuity.
Step 4: Meditate
With eyes closed, focus your awareness onto your breathing or perhaps a word, phrase or image that is serene and calming to you. Dr. Weil, backed by a host of studies, touts this is a medically verified way to reduce blood pressure and heart rate, and to increase blood flow.
Step 5: Sleep
Make sure you have enough time every day for rest. A rested body is better equipped to manage daily work and life stress.
Take care of yourself. Notice your stress, and apply these and other tips you have learned to lower the stress in your muscles and your mind. A daily 10-minute stress management exercise will make you healthier and more effective, and it may even add to your longevity.