You’ve had a horrible day at the office. The phone wouldn’t stop ringing, the irritating new girl across the hall with an eye on your job wouldn’t stop pestering you, and you spilled coffee all over your brand new suit. You’d put out one fire in accounting and two more would instantly spring up in marketing. The pressure just would not let up. Your lunch consisted of a candy bar washed down by cup of coffee between phone calls. What a nightmare!
All you want to do now is head home, crack open an ice cold beer, and collapse on the couch. That might not be the wisest plan. Although the thought of exercise after a day like this might sound intolerable, it may be exactly what the doctor ordered.
Consistent exercise may be the number one way to combat stress. Regular exercise whether it be jogging, lifting weights, or even walking can work wonders in the long term fight against stress. Exercising conditions your body and promotes the release of endorphins which lifts your spirits, improving your overall mood. This would be the “Runner’s High” everyone talks about. I’ve experienced it personally can honestly say that it makes a world of difference after a difficult day at the office. Life just seems better after a long jog.
Exercise not only improves your heath, it can improve your appearance thus boosting your self esteem. It helps to lower blood pressure, relieves muscular tension, and improves blood flow to the brain. Consistent exercise, especially after a stressful day at work can make a tremendous impact on your overall stress level. If it has been awhile since you’ve left the couch, be sure to consult your physician first. You can hurt yourself if overnight you increase your level of activity from walking to the fridge and back to running five miles (Please seek medical advice before beginning a new exercise program).
Eating well and getting adequate sleep are also important in combating stress. Eating healthy foods gives you energy whereas although a candy bar may give you a temporary sugar high, eventually you’ll crash and feel worse than before. Not receiving adequate sleep will automatically place stress upon your body and mind.
Deep breathing, yoga, and psychotherapy may also help relieve stress. Psychotherapy can help you to pinpoint unhealthy thought patterns, belief systems, and choices that may be contributing to your overall stress levels. Deep breathing and yoga can help relax both the body and the spirit. Combine these with exercise and you’ll be in your own personal nirvana.
Resist the urge to self medicate when stressed out. Although alcohol can provide temporary relief, the key word is temporary. You need to take steps that are both physically and physiologically healthy when combating stress. Alcohol can actually increase feelings of anxiety and lead to problems down the road.
Some natural herbs may possibly help reduce symptoms of stress which you can read about here… herbs to relieve stress.