We lead very hectic lives today, despite having many conveniences. Most of us rush from work to the store to complete shopping after work, care for kids, cook and then rush back again to work the next day. No one really has the time to relax and unwind it seems because of both the practical necessities and our responses to them. This will eventually lead to fatigue, body aches and a range of health problems. Many people will try to periodically see a masseuse, take yoga or have chiropractic treatments that help to reduce the stress and stress-related health problems. However, many people can’t afford to do so and classes in south florida for yoga are seventeen dollars a session often.
In between regular appointments, many people feel that they lapse back into unhealthy eating, tiredness and stress. They come back to the chiropractor saying, “Oh, I felt so good just after one session but it was a bad week and now everything is aching again.” This can be very frustrating for the practitioner as well as the patient.
Virginia Satir, a famous American psychotherapist, made a very interesting observation. According to her most people needed 4 hugs a day to help prevent depression, 8 hugs for psychological stability, and 12 hugs for growth. Skeptics might laugh their heads off but she isn’t very wrong. If a hug can make a person feel better, imagine what a nurturing session of psychotherapy, massage or a chiropractic adjustment can do to the human body and mind. However, this soothing effect has to be maintained in-between treatments as well. Some steps you can take to manage your stress is to recognize the cause of the stress and prevent it. The simple strategies listed below will also help you calm your mind and relax yourself during difficult times.
• No matter how bad the situation looks, know that it can be changed. Every stressful situation does have a solution but you will have to stop, calm yourself down and then negotiate a better solution to the problem. Counseling is a way to help identify the sources of stress and one’s reactions. Yoga and massage can help to undo the tension in the muscles.
• Many people find that meditation or relaxation techniques can calm the mind. Meditation does not mean you sit in one place and chant. It means clearing your mind of stressors and focusing on an immediate activity that is soothing. Even doing a repetitive activity like swimming, knitting or painting can be a form of meditation as it keeps your mind focused and away from repeating thoughts over and over.
• Visualization techniques – You can create a peaceful picture which you can anchor to during difficult times. For example, a vacation spot, the ocean, a mountain trail or something which evokes a sense of calm and peace is a good way to deepen this. The more realistic the image, the better you will feel. Using something that has a positive memory can strengthen it.
• Improve your nutrition- Most people forget to eat or overeat when they are stressed or busy. Train yourself to eat well, on time and with balance. This will prevent blood sugar swings. Low or high blood sugar levels can make a person irritable and angry which can exacerbate a negative reaction.
• Cut down on nicotine and caffeine – Both nicotine and caffeine can make a person hyperactive and alert but the high also comes with a price. These substances can alter perception and decisions resulting in impulsive behaviors. Think about switching over to teas like green tea, chamomile or chai which are soothing and stress-busters as well. Increase your water intake as well as dehydration can contribute to stress and irritation.
• Be aware of office tensions. One common reason for stress is dealing with office work, colleagues, supervisors and office politics. If you feel that your job is the main stressful factor, sit back and find out what is causing the problem. Is it office politics, an irritating boss, too much work etc? If you feel you are taking on too much work, try to speak about it with your manager. Avoid office politics, but be friendly. Do not attempt to fix another person’s problems and do not spread gossip. Talk to your boss and if he does not understand your problems, take it to upper management until someone listens. Often there can be a lot of insecurity and competition at work and even those in upper management may worry about their job stability.
No matter what stress relief method you choose, remember to be consistent. You can ask your chiropractor, therapist or health practitioner for homework assignments such as meditation sessions, stretching or visualization routines which will help you relax during the week. You can also use a guide such as How to Stay Balanced During Stressful Situations available at www.Outside-the-Box.net . Don’t just rely on your appointments for changing your state of mind, but do short daily practices to cultivate and grow this awareness.