By Brandi Monasco
Life can be crazy sometimes. Many of us have to juggle work, home life, the kids; whatever it is that you do on a daily basis – you’re not alone.
Sometimes you may feel so overwhelmed that you are not sure how you are going to get anything done. You start feeling stressed. I get it!
But as you likely know, being stressed is not good for your health. If you are constantly stressed and feel as if you can’t relax, it could be hard to get on with your day. And an important fact you may not realize is that being stressed is actually causing harm to your entire body – internally and externally.
Having stress can wreak havoc on your immune system and give you a higher risk for for getting a variety of infections, anything from the common cold to more severe diseases such as cancer or autoimmune diseases. Stress can also affect your skin and cause rashes and hives. It can also cause your blood pressure to increase and make you more prone to heart attacks and stroke.
Common Symptoms Of Stress
- Dry mouth
- Stomach pain or nausea
- Insomnia or problems sleeping
- Nervous habits such as fidgeting
- Increased irritability
When you start feeling overwhelmed and stressed, take 5. Give one of these 5 minute exercises a try, both of which will leave you feeling refreshed and calm so that you can carry on with your day.
- Sit in a comfortable position (either in a chair, Indian style, whatever works best for you).
- Close your eyes.
- Turn your ankles and point your toes back towards your face and tighten your shins. Hold this for 10 seconds.
- Release and relax for 30 seconds.
- Point your toes downward and tighten your calves and thighs and hold for 10 seconds then release and relax for 30 seconds.
- Take a deep breath and arch your back slightly while pushing your stomach out. Hold this for 10 seconds, then relax for 30 seconds.
- Hunch your shoulders forward and up towards your ears. Hold this for 10 seconds and then relax.
- Breathe in and at the same time raise your right arm out to your side and over your head.
- Breathe out.
- Breathe in again and stretch your arm up to the ceiling.
- Breathe out.
- Repeat steps 1-4 with your left arm.
- Let your arms come down slowly while you breathe out.
- Continue to breathe deeply for 20 seconds.
- Place your feet shoulder width apart.
- Slowly let your head hang forward until your chin touches your chest.
- Start to curl forward and bend over very slowly. Breathe in deeply and let your arms hang and dangle down as far as you can comfortably.
- Gently sway from side to side.
- On each inhale, raise back up a little bit. On each exhale, relax.
Try one or both of these stress-buster techniques the next time you are feeling stressed or overwhelmed. Remember to try to calm your mind while you are doing these exercises. Your mind and your body will thank you!
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