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1. Address Your Stress

Stress has a huge negative impact on the health of your mind, body and soul. In order to combat stress, it is important to first understand exactly what it is and how it impacts your health. This short article on stress will give you a much clearer understanding of how our bodies respond to stress and why it affects us in such a negative way. It is not always possible to remove stressors from your life but it is possible to change the way you respond to stressful situations and to engage in stress-relieving activities.

Stress manifests itself in so many ways. It can make you gain weight, lose weight, have skin breakouts and cause depression. It can make you close off from the world, make you not want to do the things you want to do or prevent you living the life you are meant to.

Here are a few tips to help reduce and manage your stress:

  • Learn breathing techniques. Deep breathing helps to calm the stress response. With each exhalation you can feel the weight of stress lifting from your shoulders.

  • Go for a walk. Release tension by taking in deep breaths of the fresh air. This will relax you and help release the tension.

  • Listen to music. Music can be particularly relaxing and therapeutic. Choose some calm and relaxing music and put your phone and laptop on silent. The calming effect of music is best experienced without any other distractions.

  • Get a good night's sleep. Sleeping well helps refresh and energise you, whereas lack of sleep makes you feel frustrated, overwhelmed and stressed.

  • Smile more and laugh out loud. You will be amazed at how much calmer and happier you feel with a smile on your face, or having a laugh with friends.

  • Try Heat Therapy. Apply heat pads or wraps on your shoulders and neck to feel relaxed and safe from stress.

  • Book a massage.

  • Have a magnesium or Epsom salt bath with a few drops of lavender oil added to the water. This will relax your muscles, destress you after a tough day and get you ready for a good night's sleep.

  • Always find things in your life to be grateful for. Being grateful promotes positive feelings which help you feel good about yourself and can help reduce your stress.

For a more in-depth discussion, please read this article I wrote on the effects of stress on your health for Anything Goes Lifestyle Magazine

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