Stress Management Techniques Are Perfect Stress Busters

By Natasha A. Unzueta

Some stress is an important part of everyday life. As a consequence of being stressed we react to situations better, perform with a heightened level of awareness, access a more focussed way of thinking. But to live in a permanently stressed state is counter-productive; it is draining and bad for our long term health.Learning to prioritize is an important stress management technique. We can become habituated to instantly reacting whenever there is a request for work or help, but learning to prioritize is an important way to manage stress. Doing the most urgent tasks first helps to manage stress and pressure as it minimises the need to have people banging on the door, urgently demanding a piece of work.

Seeing things through from start to finish is important, as it can be tempting to start one piece of work, then another and have several projects on the go at once. This can apply equally at home or at work; starting to clean a room, then doing a little ironing, then the garden can result in nothing being finished and leave a dissatisfied feeling at the end of the day. If a work task has to be left part way through make sure that you make clear notes so that it can be resumed efficiently once you return.

Once you get to know the chief reason behind your stress, you can easily manage it. All you need is spend some time with yourself and family away from tedious activities of your daily life. This helps in relieving your tensions and keeps you totally relaxed. A weekend getaway or a holiday to a hill station can also be a wise option to get rid of your stress, breaking free of the shackles of social events and work pressures. An exercise regime followed regularly acts as a positive catalyst in reducing stress levels. You can also join yoga classes or seek professional help from experts who can help you out with best stress management techniques. Various programs and counseling by professionals help to eliminate all issues related to stress in an easy and reliable way.

Look at the big picture: Take perspective of the stressful situation. Ask yourself how important it will be in the long run.Have role models: Emulate people who have had success that you admire. Learn about the struggles they have had during their career paths and the techniques they used to overcome difficult times.Be more assertive: Do not take a back seat in your life. Deal with problems head on, doing your best to anticipate and prevent them. When you have got an exam to study for and your chatty room mates just got home, say up front that you only have five minutes to talk.

Practice self-hypnosis. It need only take a second or two to visit a calm place in nature, like a garden, beach, waterfall, and enjoy the sense of peace it brings, or to practice telling yourself some positive affirmations and statements. These are effective ways to manage stress, boost your inner peace and improve your self-esteem. Self hypnosis can act as a quick mini-break at times of pressure, when you're maybe needing to clear cluttered thinking and access a sense of calm, peace and clear thinking.Self-hypnosis can also provide a fast and effective way to draw a line between work and home. Some people find it hard to switch off at the end of the day. They find themselves constantly checking their phone or emails, unable to stop worrying or stressing about the latest project or task. Practice breathing techniques and self-hypnosis as an effective way of letting go of invasive thoughts and setting better habits in place.

Remind yourself to value the other areas of your life, your family, friends, hobbies and interests as well as work. By introducing stress management techniques it becomes easier to find a balance between all those different areas. You establish a better quality of life and establish a healthy work/life balance that brings satisfaction, pleasure as well as challenge and only occasional stress.

Try it right now:Relax your body and free yourself of any signs of tension. Allow your tongue and jaws to relax. Drop your shoulders away from your ears. Let your abdomen relax and become softer, freeing yourself of all tension from that part of your body. Become aware of your breathing just as it is. Inhale and take in a deep, full breath.Allow the breath to flow all the way down into the lower belly. You can imagine that there is a small balloon in the belly. As you breathe in, allow that balloon to smoothly inflate. As you breathe out, feel how the balloon easily collapses. Take in several of these measured, gentle, deep breaths.

Many people find that they can start the page with a great deal of anger reflected in their strokes. You can often see the difference from the harder, less intentional strokes of the crayon to the softer and more reserved strokes. This is visually satisfying because you can see that it is working. As you start to see the pattern of strokes from one end of the book to the other, you will notice that it takes less time for the hard strokes to soften.

If you are just learning diaphragmatic breathing, it can be helpful to begin by lying on your back with your knees bent. In this posture, it is easier to feel "soft-belly", diaphragmatic breathing. Be mindful of the feeling of the belly rising with the inhalation and falling with the exhalation. Let the breath initiate that movement.You can also put your hands on your abdomen and breathe into their warmth. Feel how the weight of the hands goes up with inhalation and drops with exhalation. A thick book resting on the abdomen will create the same sensation.

Another wonderful way to find deep belly breath is to lie face down on your belly. In this position, the only way you can breathe is diaphragmatically.Lastly, it can sometimes be useful to let yourself sigh out loud with the out-breath. Sounding is a wonderful way to let go of stress and tension.Deep, diaphragmatic, soft-belly breathing has a profound effect on the body. Just three minutes of soft-belly breathing can shift your body out of Stress Response mode into the Relaxation Response! And if you can remain in that Relaxation Response for just 20 minutes each day, you will go a long way toward offsetting the destructive effects of chronic stress on your body.

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