Stress Management. This is an ongoing battle that every person in every profession fights. What is the best way to handle the stress that each of us encounter every day? People try everything - yoga, exercise, candles, perfumes, energy bracelets, gems, prayer, deep breaths, massages, ignoring it, yelling at people, blaming other people; is there one solid answer?
Yoga and exercise are proven stress relievers. At the very least, they help you get your mind off of whatever is bothering you for a while while you are exercising. They also can provide you with the time needed to take a step back and think about what is going on and take a minute to think about whatever is stressing you out at the time. Also, burning the calories of exercise and stretching your muscles both actually help to alleviate stress in the muscles where we carry most of our stress we feel!
Candles and/or perfumes and/or some form of pleasant smells. These can help, but they don't actually physically remove stress from the body. The pleasant smells do effect the endorphins found in the chemoreceptors in our nose, so that does help with helping a person to feel "better." Endorphins are chemical signals sent from our brain telling the body "this is nice" or "pleasant feelings." Exercising and yoga will also stimulate the body to release endorphins.
Energy bracelets and/or gems and/or prayer. These very based on your personal belief systems. There is no "proof" that any of these physically work, but it cannot be denied that in some cases they appear to help people. The truth may simply be the power of positive thinking. I am using this method, and I know it gets rid of my stress; therefore, I will be less stressed. Then it works! There will never be any physical proof to these methods, but I personally pray on my more stressful days and I know I do feel better.
Deep breaths - what do you think? Getting more oxygen to the brain definitely triggers the opening of air passageways and allow the blood to receive more of "the good stuff" you and me both need! More oxygen means more blood flowing and can help us unwind when something gets you so worked up. I like to take deep breaths in pressure situations, just simply because it allows me to have a few extra seconds to process a solution to a problem. It also just feels good to relax for a few seconds while all you are focused on is breathing. A minute or two to yourself will no doubt help!
Massages - what wonderful things that we all know make us feel better! The do physically help alleviate the stress that builids up in our muscles - particularly in the shoulders and lower back. Did you know that after the shoulders, our lower backs hold most of our bodies' stress? No wonder so many Americans suffer from lower back pain! (lower back pain is the second highest complaint to doctors - anyone know the first? I do, but let's see what we can come up with!) Anyway, the masseuse physically works out "knots" in our muscles to help reduce our stress in a physical manner. I am referring to a true massage by the way - not a sweedish feel good massage that barely truly does anything. On another note - always drink tons of water after a massage or you will be in pain - this is a scientific fact! A massage is no different than exercise in the sens of drinking water!
Ignoring stressful things, yelling and/or blaming other people. We all know that these ideas can't be the right answer. Sure, sometimes people do things that are clearly their fault, but we need to address this person in a calm professional manner after some time and thinking has gone into it. We don't want to hurt someone's feelings only to create more stress for us at a later time! That would defeat the whole purpose of removing the stress! Ignoring stress can also stress us out more, because we know we are thinking about something on a subconscious level and it is creating more stress about the topic. Don't ignore the stress - figure out a way to deal with it!
So is there just one way to solve stress issues? Absolutely not - we don't always have time to practice yoga or engage in exercise, but they do tend to prove the best relievers of our stress. Having candles and other pleasant smelling things nearby might be helpful to alleviate stress temporarily, but they shouldn't be solely relied on. Deep breaths will really help out in a bind, so don't forget to stop, breathe deeply, and take a few seconds for yourself! Massages can be expensive, so don't rely soely on those either! But don't be afraid to treat yourself every now and then! Don't ignore your stress - solve it!