Simply stated, stress is how your body reacts to change. Changes occur all the time, and when change impacts us directly, we’ll respond. Depending upon how you feel about the change can determine whether its a good stress or a bad stress. Getting married can be perceived as a good stress; the illness or death of a loved one a bad stress. What kinds of stressors are in your life? What’s a stressor for you? Here are a few things to think about when you’re under stress.
• Don’t dwell on things you can’t control – the sheer fact that it IS out of your control, means there’s nothing you can do about it. Don’t waste your energy on things you can’t control. Put your energy toward things you CAN do something about.
• Stay (or get!) organized – clutter can decrease productivity, can have a negative effect on your grades. Create a clutter-free environment to ease the mind.
• Forgive yourself and others if your expectations are not met – when you hold onto negative energy, it doesn’t do anything to help you. It just keeps perpetuating the negative situation. It’s OK to get angry at someone or something, but then let it go. They’ve probably moved on anyway, so who’s it hurting if your still angry.
• Watch your thoughts/ think positive – did you know that optimists actually experience better circumstances , in part because their way of thinking helps create better circumstances. One of my favorite sayings right now is “ You get what you think about, whether you want it or not. Change your thoughts. Change your life!”. If you think you can’t, then you can’t. You’ll find all the reasons in the world why you can’t. However, the opposite is true as well. Like the little engine that could, if you think you can, YOU CAN! And you will find all the evidence in the universe to support you. It starts from within. I use positive affirmations to buoy my confidence to help me believe that I can.
Yoga, Tai Chi, Sports, strength and flexibility training, Dancing – anything that gets you moving and increasing the level of endorphins.
Listen to music – There have been studies done testing the impact of music on the left and right brain hemispheres that showed when certain sounds were experienced, there was a “equalization” of the brainwaves from the normal spiked voltage to a more smooth wavelike pattern. It is thought in some circles, that the calming affects of music may be linked to when we were in the womb, listening to our mothers heartbeat, and that certain rhythms or beats may evoke that relaxing, safe protected environment in us. Remember, everyone has different taste in music, so it’s important to listen to music that makes you feel comfortable. Forcing yourself to listen to “relaxation” music that you don’t like may increase your stress level, not decrease it!
The basis of massage is touch. There is increasing medical evidence to show the great value of touch. Touch is so natural that without it people become depressed and irritable. Observations show that children brought up in families where parents and children touch each other are healthier and more able to withstand pain and infection than those children deprived of touch. They tend to sleep better, are more sociable and generally happier. Think about it. When you see that a friend is truly upset, don’t you instinctively reach out to hug them? Put your arm around their shoulder? How do you feel when you get a great big bear hug from someone? I LOVE a great big hug!!
Now, breathe, and get on with life!