Control Your Stress with Mindfulness | Acheloa Wellness
Life is more chaotic than ever before. After a day filled with work, running errands, and socializing with loved ones, our lives turn into routine madness. Now is the perfect time to talk about stress.
External factors such as work deadlines or family demands may not be in our control, but we are in control of our internal stressors. The sooner you learn how to manage the factors that affect your internal stress, the better you’ll be able to handle external stress. You’ll quickly notice the impact. After engaging in some of the stress-solving practices below, you’ll start to see improvements in your mood, health, and general life.
Balance your blood sugar – STAT!
Have you recently ridden the “energy roller coaster?” Do you wake up groggy, then get through a slightly energetic morning, crash around 3pm, and finally feel awake and energetic around 9pm, just around the time you should be winding down? If so, this is not normal. Your body is meant to provide constant spurs of energy throughout the day, giving you a steady source of energy to get everything done.
If you don’t eat well already, you need to get into healthier eating habits. Below are simple tips to help stabilize your body’s flow of energy.
Have breakfast within 90 minutes of waking up.
Eat lunch within 3.5 hours of breakfast.
Enjoy a small snack in the afternoon, before you feel your energy drop.
Eat dinner at dinnertime, a few hours after the snack.
Recommendation: Get into a consistent and healthy eating routine.
Not all exercise is created equal. Two hours of hard cardio each day isn’t the solution to managing your stress, especially if you’re already overwhelmed and dealing with other hormonal imbalances. Overexerting yourself at the gym can set you up for failure emotionally and physically. After any workout, you should feel more energetic, not less.
Ladies, believe it or not, where you are in your menstrual cycle also matters.* The sooner you can learn to exercise in accordance with your cycle, the sooner you’ll see an impact on your emotional state, levels of stress, and weight management. For the first two weeks after your period (follicular and ovulatory phases), you can be “harder” on your body by taking that bootcamp or spin class. The second two weeks of your cycle (luteal and menstrual phases), which include your period, should focus on lower intensity exercise such as light walks or yoga.
Recommendation: Before hitting your next Crossfit class, see how you feel. Generally, if you’re already dealing with high levels of stress, try to focus on no more than 30 minutes of cardio.
Supplement your stress
The power of technology has brought many medicines and new products into our lives. They were made to make our lives more efficient at the lowest cost possible, but many fail to keep us healthy, too. Think about the power of Lysol or over the counter medicines. They’re filled with chemicals and toxins that may sanitize our house and bodies, but also disrupt our hormonal balance.
Beauty products: look for natural soaps, deodorants, and hair products.
Body: before running to the pharmacy for magic pills to cure basic ailments, try leveraging herbs or essential oils.
Home: use natural, plant based detergents. Utilize baking sodas and vinegars to clean your home.
Recommendation: Go natural whenever possible.
I can go on and on with additional ways to improve your stress, but try conquering these three first.
To each of these points, I speak from personal experience. When I was working 14-hour days for nearly seven months of the year, I allowed myself to eat and drink whatever I wanted. I didn’t realize all the damage I was doing to my body and my emotional state. I was depressed, highly stressed, and had breakouts… a lot of them.
Since adapting these behaviors, I’ve been able to better manage myself and prevent the external chaos by working hard to control my internal stressors. I wake up each morning striving to be better than I was the previous day, and thus, have been able to conquer a few of my demons. I challenge you to do the same.
* Alisa Vitti, CEO of FLO Living is a powerhouse. Her teachings abount women’s health continue to empower me to rely on nature to understand and heal my body.