10 Natural Tricks That Will Help You Reduce Stress
Stress is present in our daily lives, and a lot of us don't know how to avoid it because it has become so present in our day-to-day routines. A large part of our evenings are spent trying to de-stress from the morning and afternoon, often not being able to achieve that. Stress relief is important, whether it's through yoga, healthy eating, playing or exercising. Stress is a leading cause of diseases such as Alzheimer's and Dementia, affecting your memory and cognitive ability. Below, we cover 10 healthy habits you can start today to improve the relationship you have with your everyday life.
1. Companionship and Affection
Companionship is important, especially when it comes to affection. Affection increases a hormone in your body called oxytocin. This oxytocin helps you feel happier and healthier. Oxytocin can come from hugs from loved ones or the famed unconditional attention shown by loving pets
Sitting down and spending time with your pet has shown to increase oxytocin to the brain and create a greater sense of self-esteem, minimizes the effects of anxiety and social rejection, helping you feel happier overall.
2. Mindfulness Throughout Your Day
Mindfulness is something not many people have during their day-to-day life. Mindfulness can easily be mistaken for meditation, and it is similar. Mindfulness is the act of being present in every activity you do, from being at work to washing the dishes. Instead of simply going through the motions and being ready to finish with your chores, take the time to be present with your activities.
Taking dish-washing for example, focus on the motions of the chore and watch how the soap and water clean each plate or glass. Stay present in the moment and don't get lost in your thoughts. Breathing techniques may help here as well.
3. Learn To Juggle
Juggling increases your cognitive ability and not only reduces your stress by letting you relax and play but also helps protect you from cognitive decline and diseases such as Alzheimer's. With practice each day, juggling can increase your motor skills and alleviate the stress in your everyday routine.
4. Exercise Your Stress Away
Exercise helps decrease stress hormones in your body by utilizing them to grow muscles. Your body is meant to work and move every day, not sit around dormant. Exercise also increases the endorphin levels in your brain, making you directly feel more energized, happier, and less fatigued through the day.
5. Drink Soothing Teas
By ending your day with a relaxing cup of tea such as chamomile or nettle, you can relax into a better sleep during the night as well as prepare your body for sleep.
By drinking a cup around the same time of night, you can train your body to understand that you're getting ready to go to sleep, alleviating insomnia.
6. Disconnect to Reconnect
Technology is so integrated into our everyday lives that we forget what it's like to spend an evening without cell phones, radio, television or internet around. It's healthy to disconnect from technology from time to time and learn how to reconnect to activities that you enjoy, or learning new activities like juggling or knitting. Read that good, paperback book that you've been eyeing or simply daydream and watch clouds pass by.
7. Eat Healthier
By eating healthier, your body is fueled with healthier things. The healthier fuel you provide for your body, the more energetic and less run down you will feel.
Try starting your day with turmeric and 30 grams of protein.
Avoid processed food and sugars by making quick and easy meals that you can make on the weekends and refrigerate for lunches or dinners throughout the week.
This also helps keep your food cost low if you order out often.
8. Get a Good Night's Rest
Getting a good night's sleep is more important than you think. Sleep deprivation can cause stress, cognitive and memory loss as well as an abundance of other symptoms. Long term sleep deprivation can cause lasting effects on your mood and self-esteem. A good night's rest consist of several sleep cycles, each one lasting 90 minutes. Waking up in the middle of a sleep cycle can cause you to wake feeling groggy and stay fatigued throughout the day, taking a toll on your emotional and physical health.
9. Utilize Your Sense of Smell
By using your sense of smell, you can feel more at peace with your day and alleviate stress. Aromatherapy is a powerful stress reliever and has been proven in several clinical studies to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression in patients who regularly took the time to 'stop and smell the roses'.
Relaxing scents can be lavender, rose petals, and rosemary.
Essential oils work best when placed in an oil diffuser or wax melter, however, some people choose to use scented candles.
Often times, scented candles are made with synthetic scents, so it is best to find a candle with either real essential oils or make your own. You can also make your own soaps for that late-night shower to help your body calm down for sleep.
10. Take a Break
Taking a break is beneficial for your body. It's important to let yourself settle down and take time to play. Playing is a natural stress-reliever that many people give up for the sake of appearances, and it's downright unhealthy to give up. Playing not only releases cortisol, the stress hormone, it also increases endorphins to help you feel happier and alleviate stress. It's a core function of the human body and is as simple as playing with legos, puzzles, and board games or even dedicating time to play with your pet.