Health and Wellness

5 Great Ways to Reduce Stress and Anxiety

By Eric Harry

Yes, I get it. Work and family life is chaotic and full of complications. Let's fix that! All it takes is a few minutes out of your day to exercise. It's refreshing and invigorating. If you follow some of these tips, you can calm yourself, bring your resting heart rate down and resume your day happier, more focused, more energetic.

Let's get started:

Daily de-stressing Checklist

1 - Exercise

Exercise creates extra endorphins which give you a more positive mood boost and make you feel better, which in turn reduces stress. Endorphins act as analgesics, which means they diminish the perception of pain. They also act as sedatives. Exercise creates a break time to leave your thoughts behind, as it's hard to think and exercise at the same time, and it helps wash away immediate stress so you can rejuvenate. Exercise also promotes Adult Neurogenesis, the process of birth of neurons which has been suggested as important to learning.

Exercise Suggestions

  • 30 minute walks daily are great de-stressor routines and a universal form of exercise as you can vary the pace accordingly
  • Try Tai-chi. There are many beginner videos on youtube.com. Google "Tai chi exercise groups" in your area
  • Yoga - check youtube.com to get going with some beginner class or find a local yoga studio
  • Running / jogging / fast-walking
  • Pilates

Always consult your doctor before beginning physical exercise

2 - Avoidances

  • Avoid TV or online news programs at least 3 hours before bed. Think of it as "turning off your day".
  • Avoid sports programs at least 2-3 hours before sleeping.
  • Avoid political shows and no discussion about politics at least 2-3 hours before sleep.
  • Watch lower intensity shows or happier feel-good movies or comedies but no action or violence.
  • Change stressful habits, avoid stressful people as many hours as possible before sleep.

3 - Diet

  • Improve your diet by eating less, eliminating sugar, eliminating junk foods and eliminating pop or sugary drinks.
  • Limit or eliminate caffeine, alcohol and nicotine at least seven hours before sleeping.
  • No snacks at least 2 - 3 hours before sleep.
  • If you have digestive issues such as bloating or constipation, consider seeing a health specialist who might suggest probiotics and enzymes before meals.

4 - Room preparation

  • Keep the room temperature at about 18 degrees Celsius or 64.4 Fahrenheit.
  • Blackout curtains to block out all exterior light.
  • Remove lights from the bedroom. Place masking tape over LEDs lights on alarm clocks, for example.
  • Remove any computer, cell phone or TV from the bedroom (due to their electro-magnetic and wifi technology).

5 - Sleep Routine

  • 10 minute Meditation: Dim the lights, lie on the floor, tune out thoughts, imagine you see a light at the end of a tunnel with your eyes closed.
  • Go to bed only when sleepy.
  • Go to bed at the same time every night.
  • Get up at the same time every day.
  • Avoid naps during the day.
  • Avoid clock-watching if you can't sleep...unplug or remove the clock if possible.
  • Read a book before or in bed.
  • Let go of the fear of not sleeping.
  • Play low level nature sounds from an internet radio.

Calm Radio can be part of your de-stressing routine. We have many channel choices under the Relaxation category, like sleep music and nature sounds. Some listeners prefer relaxing music to fall asleep while others prefer only atmospheric nature sounds. Your choice of either music or nature sound channel for sleeping is a personal one that only you can make.

Some example channels for sleep:

  1. Calm Radio's Sleep channel - curated with only ambient non-percussive music and only smooth harmonies.
  2. Calm Radio's Beach Waves Atmosphere - hypnotic, repetitious and trance-like Beach Waves can lull you to sleep and is also beneficial in the reduction of Tinnitus symptoms.

Listen 24/7 to unlimited channels on unlimited devices

Enjoy your audio journey anywhere, even without internet. Calm Radio offers unique audio experiences – curated music, Sounds of Nature, relaxing ambience – so you can work, can focus, can relax, can sleep.

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