Overwhelmed… tips to calm your system and hack your stress

How often do you find yourself complaining out loud or in your head about how stressed you are or how much you have to get done? Constantly feeling like everything is too much or that you have no time, contributes to chronic stress which can leave you feeling tired and worn out and lead to ill health. Below are some easy steps we can include daily to help us reduce stress:

  1. Practice saying no when you can
  2. When things seem to be spiraling out of control stop and ask yourself what CAN you do right now
  3. Take frequent breaks, staying sat at your computer reduces blood flow and makes you less productive, aim to get up and take a quick break every 25min
  4. Simplify, simplify, simplify.. this includes not only your to do list but your surroundings and lifestyle
  5. Spend some quiet time alone, avoid situations or persons that drain you
  6. Live in the moment, focus on what you are doing right now rather than worry about all the things you have to do
  7. Breathe, deeply, just a few deep breaths from the belly help reset your nervous system making you calmer and able to think more rationally
  8. Try having a technology free day or at least a morning without checking your phone every few min

The way we think about food also adds to daily stress and anxiety, we worry about what kind of food and the beliefs around whether certain foods are going to be good or bad, whether we should be eating grains and how much fat is too much. Often the stress of lunch out with friends is not worth the effort of finding something on the menu we can eat and the explanation that we need in order to justify why we need to eat this way. Remember that food is information, and how we think about the food we are eating when we eat it effects our bodies ability to digest and assimilate. Ways to be less stressed about what we eat are:

  1. Be thankful for your food
  2. Be mindful when eating, be present and enjoy and really taste every mouthful
  3. Be grateful
  4. Be kind to yourself, no-one is perfect
  5. Listen to your body, if it is asking for carbs then eat them and enjoy every bite
  6. Enjoy your food

Here’s to a more relaxed week as we move into the middle of winter, take time for self reflection and time for family.