You know that stress effects your health and your weight (learn more about how stress hormones can keep you from losing weight here), but when it comes to reducing stress, I know it’s much easier said than done. Whether it’s family commitments, deadlines at work, a killer commute or emotional stress, stress is literally everywhere. Although it’s impossible to avoid completely, I do have some solid strategies for you to reduce the amount of stress in your life in a way that is totally do-able, without having to wait for your next vacation or day at the spa.
Strategies for Reducing Stress
There are two main approaches to start reducing the amount of stress you are under.
First off, you can reduce the amount of stress put on you by re-balancing some demands. Try:
- Saying “no”;
- Getting more support;
- Delegating to someone else;
- Re-negotiating deadlines that seem unreasonable;
- When working, focus on just one thing at a time (don’t multi-task).
Secondly, since you can’t completely remove stress from you life, you want to learn to relive stress . You can improve your personal stress tolerance by trying to:
- Have some fun and laugh; call a friend, or watch a funny movie
- Make time for people (and pets!) you love;
- Get more, better-quality sleep;
- Be mindful and live more “in the moment”;
- Have one or two cups of green tea (which has been shown to lower stress levels);
- Do light, restorative exercise most days per week (e.g. yoga, swimming, or tai chi);
- Go for a walk outside;
- Spend more time in nature;
- Meditate or deep breathing; try an app or YouTube video
- Relax every evening (e.g. have a bath or read a book);
- Listen to soothing music;
- Diffuse Wild Orange Essential Oil (reduces stressful feelings)
- Colour or journal
- Do a “brain dump” every night before bed – make notes of things you’re worried about or thinking about
- Treat yourself to a massage,pedicure or other non-food reward
Stress And Your Weight
Stress has six major effects that can keep you from your weight loss goals. It affects digestion and gut health, inflammation and the immune system. Stress can cause cravings, increased appetite, and “stress eating.” It can promote fat storage around the waist with its effect on insulin sensitivity. Stress can be mood-busting and demotivating, not to mention how it worsens sleep.
All of these effects can keep you from your weight loss goals. Weight loss is about so much more than calories! Implementing lifestyle changes like reducing stress, improving sleep, and reducing toxic load can be the strategies that really move the needle on your results.
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