I suffered from a stress and anxiety disorder for years. When I was diagnosed with these disorder, I decided to not use medication. There were some days when I really wanted to take a pill rather than deal with the feelings that come with stress and anxiety. Over time I began living a more holistic and healthy lifestyle with the main goal of reduce the toll stress and anxiety takes on body. I am glad to say after a few months of trying many of these ideas I began to see a change.
Below is an article written by Kathy Wong of About.com. I have tried all of these tips and they really help quite a bit. I highly recommend the essential oils. There is nothing like the smell of the essential oil, Lavender to calm you and to help you relieve stress.
Acupressure for Stress Relief:
Instead of using acupuncture needles, acupressure uses finger pressure to stimulate the same pts. Here are 2 pressure points used for relaxation. The 1st is at the top of your head. You can feel a slight depression. Press gently but firmly there with 1 finger. The 2nd pt is between your eyebrows. Use your other finger to press. Hold both points for up to 3 min.Although nothing replaces the human touch, you can also try a self-massager, like this back cushion by Homedics. It massages pressure pts & muscle knots along the entire back. Massage cushions start at $80, online and in department stores. You place it on your chair and plug it in.
Chamomile Tea for Stress ReliefWhen we're stressed, we often reach for quick-fixes like coffee or sweets. Why not try a cup of chamomile tea instead? Chamomile tea is believed to promote relaxation & ease digestion. Animal studies suggest chamomile may work in a similar way to anti-anxiety medication.
The proper way of making a cup of chamomile tea is this: Use 1 teabag or 2 tsp of chamomile flowers. Add hot but not boiling water. Steep for 5 min and then remove the teabag or strain.
Music for Stress ReliefThe idea of using music to soothe and comfort us has been around for ages. Today, clinical trials show that music may help to reduce pain, boost energy, lower heart rate, and decrease anxiety.
Classical music is a good choice for stress. Try listening to Mozart while you're working, for focus and calm.
Or choose slow, soft music to fill you with a sense of peace & mental quiet. Instead of music, another option is to put on headphones & listen to comedy on an audio tape or on the radio during your lunch. Laughter increases mood-enhancing chemicals called endorphins, decreases stress hormones, and releases anger and hostility.
Visualization for Stress ReliefVisualization is an easy-to-learn stress reliever. Here's how to do it:
- Sit in a comfortable position
- Breathe deeply (which helps to relax muscles and quiet the mind)
- Now imagine a scene that you find calming
Say you're imagining yourself lying on a big cozy blanket by the water. Think of the way the warm breeze feels against your skin. Imagine the scent of fresh-cut grass and sweet flowers around you. See how clear & blue the water is. Listen to the waves as they gently roll into the shore. The more vivid your image is and the more senses you involve, the more effective it will be.
Aromatherapy for Stress ReliefJust like the aroma of cookies baking in the oven can make us hungry, the aroma of certain plants may help to calm or energize us. Aromatherapy is a branch of herbal medicine that uses concentrated oils that have been extracted from plants. It has been used in Europe for over 100 years.
Aromatherapy can have a profound effect on the nervous system. When oils are inhaled, the molecules go to the top of the nose and send signals to areas of the brain that govern heart rate, breathing, stress, and hormones.
One of the most popular stress-relieving aromas is lavender. Citrus oils, like mandarin or neroli, can help brighten mood & soothe nerves. Add a couple of drops to a handkerchief or tissue and inhale. Consider an aromatherapy diffuser, which disperses particles of oil into the air. Or try making a soothing room spray by adding 8 drops of neroli and 4 drops of lavender to a spray bottle and spritz your room with it.
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