Hey Friends! So let's talk about stress, the silent, but DEADLY killer!
No matter who you are or what kind of life you live, at some point in time you have experienced or will experience some level of stress, and believe it or not stress is directly linked to our physical bodies and our overall health. When you are stressed your body releases the hormone cortisol, and higher levels of cortisol can cause things like weight gain, high blood pressure, and contribute to diabetes, and ain't NOBODY got time for that!
I don't know about you, but 2020 showed me that life is SHORT! We lost a lot of people and I just want to do my part to make sure that I'm around for YEARS to come, and that includes managing stress, cuz Lord knows I felt ALL the stress in 2020. So here are a few tips on how you can reduce your stress levels.
Writing helps us express the things we cannot say aloud and it also helps us to gather our thoughts in a way that is difficult to do when we are speaking. Journaling has a way of making us more honest because it's personal and writing in our personal journal there is nothing to prove or explain to anyone.
2) Aromatherapy...here are a few fragrances that aid in reducing stress
Lavender- helps to improve sleep; can help to reduce blood pressure & heart rate
Rose- decreases anxiety & stress; stimulates the release of dopamine in the brain (dopamine plays a role in how we experience pleasure)
Orange blossom- reduces cortisol levels; cortisol is the primary stress hormone in the human body)
3) Engage in spiritual practices (such as prayer)
Whatever your religious background or affiliation, connecting with God is known to bring a sense of peace and calm. There is something relaxing and reassuring about speaking with and leaning on a power higher than yourself.
4) Deep breathing & meditation
Deep breathing helps to slow down your heart rate and puts you in control. When you practice deep breathing, the flow of oxygen to your brain is increased and your parasympathetic nervous system is stimulated which brings on a state of calm.
Exercise naturally lowers cortisol, the body’s stress hormone, and helps release endorphins, which are chemicals in the brain that elevate moods and also act as natural painkillers.