You have raised your children and met the challenges of your career, and possibly even retired. So why are you still stressed? Unfortunately, stress affects all stages of life. Luckily, there are many techniques and tools, such as apps on our phones, we can use to reduce our stress. So settle in with a nice cup of tea and relax as you read these helpful tips to help eliminate stress.
Identifying the Symptoms of Stress
Stress symptoms show in many different forms in adults. Here are a few signs you should watch for:
- poor concentration
- tension headaches
- changes in eating habits
- mood swings
- isolation (refusing to participate in socialization and activities you used to enjoy)
- trouble sleeping
If you notice any of these symptoms, it’s best to take action as soon as possible to eliminate it. Try these four tips and seek medical advice from your doctor.
1. Gentle Exercise
Low impact exercises like yoga and tai chi help lower your stress. Yoga improves your strength and flexibility while also helping you focus on your breathing. Tai Chi is a self-paced series of slow flowing body movements. This exercise focuses your mind on your breathing and movements, which keeps you in the present and clears your mind. That will lead you to a relaxed state.
As with all exercise, an injury is always a possibility. It’s best to learn and practice these techniques with a professional or fitness classes.
2. Eat Well
When we are stressed, we are more than likely going to eat sugar and calorie-filled foods. However, it’s best to keep your eating habits in balance when stressed. Here are some examples of foods that will help reduce your stress:
- Red Bell Pepper
- Dark leafy greens
- Sweet potatoes
- Black tea
Any foods containing high fiber and carbohydrates are great for helping reduce stress. Additionally, fruits and vegetables can fight disease when stress threatens to weaken your immune system.
3. Listen to music
Soothing music will help relieve any stress, anxiety or fear you may have. You can download stress-relieving apps, such as The Calm, on your mobile device to have these tools on you at all times. If you are stressed or anxious to fly, you do not need a signal to use The Calm app, so it is perfect for on the go! Although if soothing music isn’t your cup of tea, any music that uplifts your mood will work in the same way.
Many studies have shown the benefits of having a pet. People who own pets tend to have lower blood pressure, lower chance of developing heart disease, and a lower heart rate. Studies have also shown that owning a pet reduces stress. These health benefits may be attributed to walks or playing with your pet. It may also be the constant companionship you develop with your pet. Here are some pets you might consider adopting:
They do not call them “man’s best friend” for nothing. Dogs tend to be loyal to their owners and to people in general. Some hospitals have adopted a program for dogs to visit with patients. They find that their patients are calmer when they can enjoy the dog’s company by petting them or playing with them.
Cats have also proven that they have stress and anxiety reduction attributes. They love attention and snuggling with their owners. They also help keep their owner distracted if they are feeling stressed or anxious either by play or just by making sure they have food and water.
Owning a fish aquarium is also very relaxing. After installing the colorful rocks, decorations, and of course the fish, it’s fun to watch them swim. It has a very distracting quality to keep your mind off of your stress and anxieties. The gurgling or running sound of water is also very relaxing to some.
The Good News: Stress Can be Managed
Although stress is a part of life, there are many ways to manage it. Always take time to do something you love, play, and find any chance to laugh!