Stress is more harmful to your health than you may realize. Long periods of stress will take its toll on your body, and even result in illness and disease. If you already have an illness or disease, stress will only make the situation worse.
My personal experience with having extremely high blood pressure before my kidney transplant forced me to become an expert at lowering my stress level. It wasn’t optional for me to lower my blood pressure. It was mandatory. My life depended on it.
At one point, I was on four different blood pressure medications and despite the best efforts of my kidney doctor, my blood pressure remained high. My doctor told me this was common with someone who had kidney disease. In addition, I was told that stress is one of the key factors which causes high blood pressure so it was imperative that I kept my stress level low. This wasn’t a surprise to me as I had been monitoring my blood pressure three times a day since I first started having high blood pressure.
Whenever I was stressed, my blood pressure went up. The more stressed I was, the higher my blood pressure. Once I was in such a stressful situation that I burst the blood vessels in my eye. Not a pretty picture. It was evident that my body reacted dreadfully under stress.
I had to find ways to be stress-free. Let me share some practical ways to reduce stress:
- Daily Meditation.
- Practicing Yoga.
- Deep breathing exercises.
- Scheduling appointments and meetings far apart from each other so you are not rushed.
- Simplifying your life as much as possible (that includes ending toxic relationships).
- Limiting your commitments (not overextending yourself personally or professionally).
- Being careful of your diet – not eating too much, nor too late, and eating healthy foods.
- Having a good sleep. Turning off the TV, computer and all electronics one hour before you sleep to unwind and relax. Soak in a bath before you head to dreamland.
- Physical exercise. Go to the gym. Go for a walk. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- A massage. Even a short five minute shoulder and neck massage makes a difference. Do it yourself, or ask a friend and exchange the favor.
- A day at the spa (I know this is not practical on a daily basis, but if you can, treat yourself once in a while).
- Spend time in nature. Go to the wilderness. Breath fresh air.
- Aromatherapy. Have nice scents around you. The smell of lavender is great for relaxing.
- Think positively. Practice positive self-talk.
- Write out a grateful list. Focus on five things you are grateful for and spend time thinking and appreciating them.
Of course, preventing stress in the first place is always best. If you are already carrying out some, if not all, of the above methods, you will be in a much better position to handle stress when it comes along.
We all have some degree of stress at different times in our lives. However, it is essential to be aware when we are feeling stress, and consciously reduce that stress. It is also important not to focus and worry about being stressed.
Just acknowledge that you are feeling stressed and do something about it! Whether you meditate, take a walk through the park, or run up those stairs, just do it! Get in touch with your body and discover for yourself what works to lower your stress level and make time to do it! Even if you can only take five minutes a day to de-stress, your body will thank you for it!
Wishing you wellness and peace.
Love & Light,
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