How to get rid of stress
In small doses, stress can help you achieve great things – from completing an important exam to running a marathon. Prolonged stress on the other hand can do real damage, both mentally and physiologically.
Stress is your body’s response to mental or emotional pressure, hormones and chemicals are released that prepare you for physical action – a fight or flight reaction – which can have very uncomfortable side effects.
Here are some ways to tackle your daily stressors:
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
A CBT Therapist deals with your current problems. They identify your stressors and any negative thoughts, emotions or actions that are affecting the problem too. It is a very practical form therapy (or technique used within counselling), with simple, effective exercises to follow. This gives you the skills to take back control of your life’s stresses.
Reflexologists treat your stress by easing tension in your nervous system. They apply pressure to the feet, hands or ears using set points. These points correlate to a ‘zone’ of your body so can improve circulation and reduce tension throughout your body. Reflexology essentially helps to rebalance your hormones, circulation and nervous system – allowing you to heal yourself.
You may have heard it before, but ‘take a deep breath’ – we promise there is more to this than meets the eye. Anxiety or stress cause a physiological response to take shorter, quicker breaths, increasing your heart rate and blood pressure. Deep, slow, purposeful breathing sends a signal to your brain to calm down. It increases your blood oxygen levels, improving concentration, giving you a better chance of tackling the problem at hand. Check out this simple belly breathing exercise.
Mindfulness is the act of focussing all your attention on the present moment. It encourages you to calmly acknowledge and accept your current feelings and bodily sensations. Mindfulness is a way of life, but combined with meditation it will help calm a particularly frantic mind. This practice helps to banish thoughts of what has happened or might happen, a significant cause of stress.
Similar to reflexology, your acupuncturist will treat stress by stimulating set points on your body. Fine needles get applied to points that on the appropriate ‘meridian’ or ‘Qi’, a highway of energy to unblock it. So, depending on the point stimulated, it can help deal directly with symptoms of stress such as lethargy, headaches and low mood. Long term it can transform your body’s ability to handle stress on its own. Studies are starting to show this to be a highly effective treatment.