Feeling stressed is a common daily emotion. While sometimes it can be a motivator, stress also takes a serious toll on the mind and body. April is Stress Awareness Month, an important time to acknowledge these negative side effects of stress and to take the necessary steps to lessen them. The Spa at the Camelback Inn (Scottsdale, AZ), has prepared three easy tips that can be practiced at home, at work, and on the subway, to assist in alleviating the side effects of stress.
Breathe like a baby-Sit comfortably with one hand on the abdomen and one on the chest. Breathe slowly and deeply so that you feel your belly round out into your hand as you inhale and contract as you exhale. By controlling your breath and learning how to breathe like a baby again, you can impact your state of mind and experience relaxation while reducing muscle tension and lowering your blood pressure.
Rub out your worries–Practice self acupressure by applying gentle, but firm pressure using your fingertips. For overall relaxation, and stress reduction, make a fist with your left hand, and bring your thumb over so it rests on your first finger. The acupressure point is just above and to the left of where your thumb and first finger meet. Apply firm pressure to the point for 30 seconds, repeat on right hand. Pressure to the bottom of the foot, in the middle, behind the ball or bone of the foot, is another way to help relieve stress headaches.
Expect the best–Upon waking in the morning, use intentional thought to expect good things to happen during the course of your day. How you think can have a profound effect on your emotional and physical well-being. Choose to be happy by maintaining a positive attitude and practicing positive thinking and you will experience less stress than those who are pessimistic and negative.
For more on the effects of stress, check out A Picture of Stress.