12 Healthy Ways to Push Pause on Stress

stress edited

Stress can really tear down your health — emotionally and physically.

My anxiety always goes through the roof when the stress is increasing in my body.  I know that I’m not my best self when I’m under stress.  I tend to make rash decisions, say things to people that I really regret later, rush through things and end up making mistakes, and my memory goes out the window when I’m stressed.

There are some common ways that we can reduce stress build up in our lives, to bring balance to the energy that flows within each of us.

1. Deep breathing.  I love practicing this every morning.  Take a deep breath.  Hold it.  Now let it out slowly through your mouth.  Try counting to 10 as you let out your breath.  Feel the tension and stress flowing out of you.  Let the negative thoughts leave your body with each breath.  Repeat this 10 times.  Deep breathing activates the vagus nerve which actually calms your mind.

Oily Tip!  Rub a couple of drops of a Young Living Essential oil or blend such as  “Lavender”, “Stress Away”, “Peace and Calming” or “Release” on your hands, cup your hands gently over your mouth and nose as you are performing the deep breathing.  Close your eyes and concentrate on letting the energizing oxygen enter your body with each breath you intake and on the stress and tension releasing from your body with each breath you exhale.

2. Massage.  I like to massage my shoulders, neck, head, lower back.  I especially enjoy getting a massage from a professional.  Massage has been practiced for thousands of years and be a great benefit in reducing stress.

Oily Tip! Rub a few drops of Young Living Peppermint, Wintergreen, Panaway or Deep Relief, mixed with a carrier oil (such as olive or sweet almond oil) on these tense muscles to bring instant reduction in stress and cooling comfort.

3. Take a Walk.  Walking not only enhances your health in many ways but it reduces the stress hormone cortisol as well.

4. Get outdoors.  Fresh air does wonders for the spirit as does sunshine.  Even in the cold of winter, the cool crisp air can clear the lungs and restore balance.

5. Take a day off.  If you’ve been very busy at work, or with the demands of home life, take the day off from your normal routine.  Go shopping, meet a friend for lunch, go see a movie, or simple go to the park and read a book.

6. Meditate or pray.  I have found great relief from stress and tension from connecting with the divine spirit within.  I love pouring out my concerns with my Heavenly Father and feeling that comfort and peace that His spirit brings.  Connecting with our eternal purpose and being helps put all the small stressful things in perspective.

7. Read a book or watch a movie.  Reading is a great way to reduce stress.  I especially enjoy reading the scriptures everyday to connect to the peace the spirit of the word of God always brings.  I also love really getting into a fictional novel and leaving my world behind for awhile.  According to some research, just six minutes of reading for pleasure can be enough to reduce stress levels by more than two thirds.

8. Love.  Spend time with those who love you and support you.  Hold hands, touch, connect.  Don’t forget our furry friends, they give unconditional love and it’s scientifically proven that pets reduce stress.

9. Disconnect.  Turn off the phone, turn off the computer, and shut off the outside world for a little while.

10. Take a nap.  Nothing can help reduce the stress more than an afternoon power nap.

11. Listen to uplifting music.  Research has shown that certain kinds of music can reduce stress levels, clear our minds, help us focus, and lift our mood.  I also find a lot of joy and reduction from stress when I take time to play the piano and sing.  So, if you play an instrument, this would be a great thing to do for a few minutes daily.

12. Diffuse essential oils.  Inhalation of pure essential oils will increase the oxygen in our brains.  It will also have a positive effect on the Limbic System in our brain.  The Limbic System deals with emotions.  This is why you can smell a type of perfume and be taken back in your mind and emotions to the person and place where you first smelled that perfume.

Oily Tip!  Citrus Oils are high in the compounds that help lift your mood.  Try diffusing any of the Young Living Citrus oils or mixing them with another Young Living oil that therapeutically helps clear the mind or calm the nerves.  Here are some great combos that I like:  Orange and Cinnamon Bark, Lemon and Rosemary, Lime and Peppermint, Lemon and Lavender, Citrus Fresh and Nutmeg, Tangerine and Pine, Lime and Sacred Frankincense. Lemon and Purification.  Feel free to leave some of your favorite scents to diffuse in the comment section below.

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What are some of your favorite ways for reducing stress?

DISCLOSURE:  Not intended for the treatment of prevention of disease, nor as a substitute for medical treatment, nor as an alternative to medical advice.  Use of recommendations is at the choice and risk of the reader.

Copyright 2015 Oils for Health and Healing

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