How to reduce stress P.2

Still feeling stressed? Try:

  1. Progressive muscle relaxation – progressive tensing or tightening of a muscle group for 10-20 seconds, followed by a period of relaxation of the same muscle(s), while imagining the sensation of tension leaving the body. Repetition of this cycle continues in a stepwise progression from top to bottom, and may be used alongside the practice of ‘imagery’.

  2. Hugging increases intrathoracic pressure (pressure in the chest) and is thought to stimulate the vagus nerve, transpiring to reduced sympathetic activation.

  3. Aromatherapy (application or inhalation of essential oils) may provide somatic activation and help to calm and relax. Recent studies have suggested that lavender may potentially quieten spontaneous neuronal activity, and therefore be effective at reducing anxiety and promoting sleep.

  4. Reading can be a powerful stress reliever, providing distraction and transportation of the mind to an alternative focus.

  5. Whether it is dancing, singing, playing music, painting, drawing, colouring, sewing, knitting, cooking, moulding; having a creative outlet can be a potent combatant for stress. As well as providing distraction and a sense of accomplishment, activities that are rhythmic or are somatically activating can provide rich pleasure. Beware of focusing your energies on creative processes that cause frustration however. The main aim should be leisure!

  6. While fast or poor food choices may provide short term stress relief, they can impact on overall health and wellbeing. In particular, high fat and sugar foods may exacerbate the inflammatory and harmful effects of stress. A high protein diet with ‘good fats’ and lots of variety will support physical health alongside emotional and mental health.

Look out for even more tips in future posts!

If stress is a big problem for you, speak to your GP or book a consult below with an Aescend artisan today

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