5+1 ways to BEAT Sress

Stress. A word on everyone’s lips in almost every minute of everyday. Outrageously positive people are not affected by it though OR they dare not admit it then suffer a burnout eventually.

Different people has different response to stress. Some like to lay back. Some go for more action orientated activities. Some just sleep it off (although I do not have that privilege.. the more I sleep the more tired I get…but I love to sleep.)

To the point. How to beat stress then? This is for people out there who has tried various methods and are just looking into more options.

Before…the 5+1 ways you should already consider to

BEAT STRESS.

Before that, let’s delve into some bio-chemistry. When the body is stressed, it releases much cortisol from the adrenal glands ( just above the kidneys) to cope with it. In prehistoric times, the only time cortisol is produce by the body is when a caveman is chased by a saber toothed tiger! But in modern times, cortisol production of the body is at a all time high! Why?

Pollution, free radicals, radiation, datelines, traffic jams, your spouse?, bosses are all forms of modern time saber tooth tigers. But unlike the caveman they use up the cortisol by running away for his dear life. Do you remember running away from your boss when he drilled you for a job not done well? Get the point?

Cortisol not used by the body becomes destructive to the body, giving rise to inflammation and in the long run if kept unchecked various illnesses crop up, like cancer for example. Do you know that the history of cancer in the royal family in Japan is due to chronic stress?

So what’s the trick here?

We will keep it simple here. We will flank this stress thing from both side. Left jab and right hook then it’s down for good.

Left jab = Control cortisol levels

Right hook = Increases endorphin production

Let’s begin with the 5+1 ways to beat the hell out of

STRESS.

#1 Breathing Exercise

Take a breather. Breathing exercise requires concentration. Concentrate on your breathing. It will seem hard at first. You will find your mind drifting back to the problem but practice makes perfect.

How? When you inhale, expand your stomach area. Inhale for 4 seconds. Then exhale thru your mouth, make a little pout and exhale for 8 seconds. Repeat ten times. If you don’t feel better already, relax and repeat one more round.

Outcome : More stable frame of mind. Able to make more conscious and rational decision in response to the situation (in scientific terms, the opposite is called amydala hijack).

Hey, this works when your blood pressure gets too high too!

Word of caution! In situations when you are in a heated argument. Do the opposite. Exhale then inhale. I am afraid if you inhale first you might hold it for too long and release the carbon dioxide in a explosion with expletive added. J

#2 Have a drink

Yey! You heard it right… go for a drink…any drink … responsibly.

Recommended drinks …

English tea, chamomile tea, green tea – antioxidants to reduce the free radicals.

Ginseng tea – Oriental way to de-stress and strengthen your body systems

Cocoa – the best food drug is chocolate, if you can’t eat ‘em, drink ‘em

Red wine – Get the kick of holding the wine glass elegantly and its heart healthy too!

and for you guys out there … BEER! – Cheers!

For this to work, drinking is not enough. Remember drinking alone makes Jack a dull boy. Invite friends! You need to talk and ramble to keep your mind off things.

Take care though, different partners require different topics… do not make the mistake of off loading your anger and troubles on another person…save them your woes.

Like a Bushism saying goes “There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can’t get fooled again.” – do that and your friend would be happy to reject your invitation.

Recommended topics for different relationships

Ex school mate – Old times, your life vs theirs, gossip of other ex school mates

Colleague – about that ignorant superior, about other colleagues, about other departments, other silly stuff

Boss? – about the marketing strategy?

Pub buddies – men and women issues.

Life partner, spouse – Your next holiday, the children

Your pet dog – Talk, talk, talk, it will lick you then yawn and sleep on your lap.

Evil? I know. What the hell you need to beat stress don’t you?

Remember DRINK responsibly.

#3 Self-Hypnosis

Tried and tested way with lots of evidence to back it up.

If you have not tried it before, take up a 3 day retreat course in it. Learn once and use it for life. Normally you can look it up in courses teaching NLP or EQ.

Buy a CD with sounds of nature like chirping of birds in the forest, streaming water with relaxing tones. Locked yourself up in a room, asked not to be disturbed for the next 30 minutes. Turn up the stereo. Volume to your liking. Close your eyes. Do the breathing exercise while relaxing your neck and shoulder. Just let yourself slum or you can sleep through it. Imagine yourself in that natural spot. Create a mental picture of the landscape. The greens. The crisp air. The gentle wind. Relax. Feel the healing energy of nature coursing down on you starting form the head slowly moving downwards to your very toes. If you have certain conditions like heart problems let the healing energy stay there for a while longer, acknowledging that it is being healed by the energy and it will get well soon. Relax. Be mindful of the breathing. If it lapses don’t fuss about it. Let your natural self take its course. At the end of the music, before you open your eyes spend some time by reminding yourself that you are grateful for what life has given you, give thanks to your Creator, spread your love to those around you. Open your eyes. Smile.

Alright you get the mental picture of it? If not, go for a retreat or course, the experience will stick to you forever.

Sounds too time consuming? Or even weird? Then you need other forms of self-hypnosis. I call it the SELF DENIAL METHOD FOR MODERN PEOPLE. Not in this post though. Will post it later. Stay tuned.

#4 Sex

From where I come from it is still a taboo to speak of it openly. I am from the modern thinking side of the society though.

First for some bio-chemistry, do you know why we feel better after exercise or a good laugh? A chemical known as endorphins is released by our brain into the bloodstream and this gives rise to feeling of happiness!! It’s known as the happy hormone!

And do you know when this hormone is released at its most? When you hit ORGASM! You heard it right, that great relief feeling you get and that shudder that comes after it, is pure primal satisfaction! Works for a quickie too!

Of course it takes two hands to clap. Satisfying one without another is no fun. Experiment what the other likes, what makes, then give and ye shall receive.

Don’t get naughty ideas though. I am in all support for one guy, one partner relationship. No hanky panky. But then again it’s your life. But remember, RUBBER FIRST! J

#5 Sauna

Got some money to spare? Pamper yourself then to a spa retreat. Relax and unwind as the masseur untie the knots in your muscles. Smell the invigorating aroma from various flower essence.

But before that, do an endorphin releasing stuff. A secret so well kept that many do it half heartedly and some even avoid it to go to the next room full of steam! You are right! The sauna! The Pandora Box of Endorphin Release!

The heat in the room is actually far infrared rays (FIR), and FIR has been studied so extensively that conventional medicine now acknowledges its usage in physiotherapy and rehabilitation. Main benefits of FIR are increasing micro-circulation, removal of toxins through sweat glands and relaxation.

It has been studied that FIR can mimic the effects of endorphin release similar to swimming. Hence it’s nickname ‘Happy Rays’.

The only downside to conventional saunas is that you are in a room full of heat. Oxygen is low and is not for those with a weak heart. So it is recommended that you look for a FIR sauna system that uses proprietary technology like ceramic semi conductors or ceramic panels that emits 4~14 micron of FIR for maximum health benefits.

I personally prefer the portable sauna though. Although you look like an ancient time criminal with the head jutting out of a box, it beats sitting in a stuffy small space anytime.

# +1

Get off your couch and Exercise!!!!!

Exercise = Sweat + Tired + Feeling good + Muscle ache and growth – Stress – Toxins

Unfortunately for the modern lifestyle, exercise has to take the backseat as we go around attending more urgent matters.

NO TIME… is the #1 excuse on the billboard. But does exercise really take that much time? Many tend to think so. When they think of exercise, running on treadmills for hours on end, going to the gym for classes, comes to mind. The truth is, exercise if done efficiently takes only 12 minutes of your time per day!

You read it right! 12 minutes! Don’t you have 12 minutes to spare in the morning, afternoon or evening? I wager if you have not been exercising those 12 minutes was spent on the couch with eyes fixated on the television.

This 12 minutes regimen I am suggesting can be done in the comfort of your home with no fancy equipment at all! Put your body to good use! That’s right, bodyweight exercises! There is loads of tips right off the Net that you can apply straight away. The only commitment here is ACTION everyday!

And you know what? Exercise improves your health physically and sexually too!

For more on bodyweight exercise, please visit this post.

Well…till next….happy beating stress at its own game!

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2 Responses

  1. 8 Simple Ways to Control Stress!

    Simple modifications in posture, habits, thought, and behavior often go a long way toward reducing feelings of stress and tension. Here are 8 quick and simple things you can do immediately to help keep your stress level under control.
    1. Control Your Anger:
    Watch for the next instance in which you find yourself becoming annoyed or angry at something trivial or unimportant, then practice letting go – make a conscious choice not to become angry or upset. Do not allow yourself to waste thought and energy where it isn’t deserved. Effective anger management is a tried-and-true stress reducer.
    2. Breathe:
    Breathe slowly and deeply. Before reacting to the next stressful occurrence, take three deep breaths and release them slowly. If you have a few minutes, try out breathing exercises such as meditation or guided imagery.
    3. Slow Down:
    Whenever you feel overwhelmed by stress, practice speaking more slowly than usual. You’ll find that you think more clearly and react more reasonably to stressful situations. Stressed people tend to speak fast and breathlessly; by slowing down your speech you’ll also appear less anxious and more in control of any situation.
    4. Complete One Simple To Do:
    Jump start an effective time management strategy. Choose one simple thing you have been putting off (e.g. returning a phone call, making a doctor’s appointment) and do it immediately. Just taking care of one nagging responsibility can be energizing and can improve your attitude.
    5. Get Some Fresh Air:
    Get outdoors for a brief break. Our grandparents were right about the healing power of fresh air. Don’t be deterred by foul weather or a full schedule. Even five minutes on a balcony or terrace can be rejuvenating.
    6. Avoid Hunger and Dehydration:
    Drink plenty of water and eat small, nutritious snacks. Hunger and dehydration, even before you’re aware of them, can provoke aggressiveness and exacerbate feelings of anxiety and stress.
    7. Do a Quick Posture Check:
    Hold your head and shoulders upright and avoid stooping or slumping. Bad posture can lead to muscle tension, pain, and increased stress.
    8. Recharge at the Day’s End:
    Plan something rewarding for the end of your stressful day, even if only a relaxing bath or half an hour with a good book. Put aside work, housekeeping or family concerns for a brief period before bedtime and allow yourself to fully relax. Don’t spend this time planning tomorrow’s schedule or doing chores you didn’t get around to during the day. Remember that you need time to recharge and energize yourself – you’ll be much better prepared to face another stressful day.

  2. Thank you…..for your advice…keep the comments coming in…

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