Stress is a big factor in weight management and choosing healthy life choices. Everyone has stress, because life isn't something we can totally control as much as we would like to and that’s a stressor all in it’s self ! The question is: Are you managing your stress, or has it mastered you? The answer matters a lot for your health, so I ask you, what are you prepared to do about it? Here are a few tips to get you started on your path of mastering your stress!
1. Try to identify what are the causes of your stress, what are the roadblocks, can you remove any? Take baby steps, but put together a mini action plan.
2. Be kind to yourself, give yourself permission to acknowedlege your feelings and express them with a friend or colleague.
3. Make time for yourself, try to exercise regularly. It doesn’t have to be a world class workout, give yourself mini goals Try walking everyday at lunch or after dinner, for 15 minutes and increase in over the week.
4. Try a little meditation. I for one have a hard time staying still for a long period of time but I found this app, “Headspace” which is a short 10 minute meditation. I can do that !
5. Try something new, maybe a new class on painting or flower arranging or healthy cooking classes. Acquiring a new skill is so rewarding.
6. SLEEP….. According to the National Sleep Foundation, Younger adults ( 18-25 ) need 7-9 hours, Adults (26-64) need 7-9 hours and Older adults (65+) need 7-8 hours. Not getting the proper amount of sleep will add to your stress level.
7. Give yourself permission to say NO when friends or colleagues ask too much of you. It’s ok to say no, they will understand, be honest, let them know you have too much on your plate right now. As a good friend of mine once told me it’s better not to over promise and under deliver!
8. Choose to eat healthy. Avoid sugar, focus on making healthy choices for yourself such as fruit, vegetables and lean protein, even though when you are stressed you want to reach for that candy bar and comfort foods, it will only add to your stress level.
9. Read a good book, download some music, reach out to a friend, Doing something nice for someone else is often the best stress reliever.
10. Last but not least, HAVE FUN. Try to relax and find the joy d’vie!