3 Tips to Reduce Stress — Monday Motivation

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Happy Monday!

For the sake of conversation, do me a favor and answer the following question without overthinking:

If you have a specific fitness goal you want to hit, will you get closer to your goal by sitting on the couch? Yes or no?

Aside from the occasional wise ass, I think we all would say the obvious answer is the only way to get closer to your fitness goal is to take action towards it, not sit on the couch.

Why is the answer not as obvious when it comes to dealing with stress?

When something small or large brings about stress, what do we typically do? Often, we either keep forcing the issue or we turn to unhealthy alleviators (smoking, drinking etc.,) But most often, we do nothing to improve the situation—we simply wait and hope for it “to pass”.

Without a doubt, exercise a great way to reduce stress; however, we don’t always have the immediate flexibility to go work out. I want you to be equipped with tools you can call on right away so you can feel better instantly, rather than wait until you get to the gym to work out.

3 Healthy Ways to Reduce Stress

1. Meditate: Meditation is nothing more than being present in the moment by focusing on your breath – don’t let the word scare you. Just find some quiet space, close your eyes and take at least 10 breaths. Ideally, spend 3-10 minutes just breathing.

2. Journal: This is most therapeutic thing you can do for yourself. Literally just write in a notebook whatever is on your mind. Rant. Talk crap. No judgment – just let your hand go.  If you are concerned about someone else reading it, just tear it up as soon as you finish. As you are journaling, write questions! One of the best ways to find solutions is not to force the answers. But rather send the question out to the universe (by writing it down) to open yourself up to the answer. If you spend 2-10 minutes journaling, it’s impossible for you to not feel better.

3. Show gratitude: Most of our problems are first world problems. And trust me, I agree some first world problems flat out suck to deal with. But at the core, we are extremely fortunate to have these problems as opposed to waking up not knowing if you’re going to eat and whether or not you will live or die. For every problem you face, write down something you are grateful for. This simple act will balance out your pain and anytime you show gratitude, you bring about love. And when love is present, fear/anxiety is absent.

I truly believe the greatest threat to wellness in our society is not obesity, it’s how we handle stress.

You can’t avoid stress just like you can’t get fit without exercising.

So exercise your mental health!  It will serve you and those around you in ways you could never imagine!

 

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JC