What would you do with increased stamina, decreased anxiety, and solid peace of mind? You would probably get more done in less time--at the very least, each day would be more enjoyable. In the long term, you would certainly experience better physical health and a longer life span.
The only thing standing between you and a higher level of general well-being is the unpreventable occurrence of stress. Daily stress can rob us of our potential, weakening every aspect of our lives. Consider the following:
Stress breaks down the efficiency of the immune system leaving our bodies vulnerable to illness and disease.
Stress causes heart problems and high blood pressure.
Stress contributes to addictive behavior, causing alcoholism, eating disorders, nicotine addiction, and workaholic tendencies.
Stress causes social withdrawal, perpetuating symptoms and leading to destructive isolation.
To avoid stress and related symptoms you must be proactive, nurturing your body and mind through a balanced diet, exercise, and reserved time for relaxation.
A Balanced Diet - We know that a balanced diet can improve your health, but can it really do anything for your stress level? Experts say it can. Research has found that good nutrition has a tremendous impact on our ability to ward off the damage stress can do to our systems. Sure, you'll still feel tense, but with your body nutritionally armed for battle, you'll handle things better. There are many things you can do to maximize your body's fighting power.
One of the most significant things you can do is to reduce the amounts sugar and white flour in your diet. Sugar and white flour cause a host of problems you could do without. By reducing these items in your diet, you will be able to maintain better weight control, reduce the risk of heart disease, and increase your energy level. Why? Because items made with these products metabolize too fast in your blood system. The result is unhealthy spikes in your blood sugar, rapid depletion of energy, and damaging stress symptoms.
Exercise - In addition to eating right, exercise can be a tremendous help in fighting stress. As you get moving, your circulation delivers oxygen and nutritional elements throughout your body. The result is muscle relaxation, the release of mood elevating chemicals, and a strengthened immune system. Studies show that those who exercise regularly are less likely to suffer from stress related illness.
Relaxation - When your body relaxes, it reverses stress symptoms. You experience a sense of control as you eliminate the feelings of helplessness that often accompany stress. Find that one thing that really helps you to kick back and forget about things for a while. Here are some suggestions:
Catering to our senses, such as sight, smell, and sound can reduce anxiety. So put on some favorite music, keep fresh cut flowers in view, and sink into a warm bubble bath.
Reduce the clutter in your life. Passing a stack of papers as you leave for work, tripping over boxes, or stuffing a breakfast plate into a sink of dirty dishes, creates underlying tension that acts as a fuse when something gets you fired up.
Deal head-on with anything that has been bothering you. Ignoring problems won't make them go away--resolving them will.
Get a good night's sleep. Your body needs this time to heal and "reboot" in preparation for the next day's challenges. Deny this basic need and you drain all of your systems of their strength.