This post is sponsored by Depend.
This has been a very stressful time in our country. I know I’ve been stressed, as a person, as a parent, as a daughter, and as a friend. It’s just a hard time, but I’m trying to focus on the positive and see how I can be less stressed. Because if I’m less stressed, my family stresses less and everyone is just calmer. Here are six good ways to be less stressed.
Food has the ability to make us feel awful – or wonderful! We all know how we feel after a heavy meal of junk food, but did you know that certain foods can help elevate our “happiness” hormones and lower or “stress” hormones? Dark chocolate and yogurt, for example, can reduce our cortisol – the stress hormone. Blueberries and turkey can increase our serotonin levels, which can improve our mood. Try a turkey sandwich on whole-grains for lunch, followed by a cup of plain yogurt with blueberries and dark chocolate morsels for dessert. Everybody knows that dark chocolate is very good for you!
It’s not easy to get off the couch and go exercise when it’s so hot outside but it’s worth it! Exercise can not only reduce the negative effects of stress but can also increase productions of endorphins, which are the brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters. So grab your sneakers and go out for a short walk or even put on a YouTube workout. I also now workout remotely with a trainer via FaceTime. It’s seriously helped me be less stressed in the past 5 months!
Spend Time in Nature
Got ten minutes? Step outside to your backyard or go to your nearest park. Ten minutes is all it takes to reap the benefits of “nature therapy” and prevent stress, anxiety and depression. Don’t have a park nearby? Adding green elements to your home will also help so buy a planter with flowers for your living room for an easy alternative when you can’t get out and be in nature. My friend Tiffany at It’s Me, Lady G is a terrific resource on how to grow your own plants.
Read A Book
Reading is one of the easiest, most affordable things you can do to relieve stress. According to research, stress levels have been proven to lower by 68% after reading a fiction book. It’s no surprise; a good book will distract you from the outside world and, according to the study, slow your heart rate and relax your muscles. I read and listen to a lot of e-books, so Kindle Unlimited or Audible (both give free trials) is a good way to enjoy a good book.
Meditate Meditation has been practiced by humans for thousands of years and even a few minutes a day can help you de-stress and reduce negative emotions. Try a YouTube video that offers guided meditation or even one that simply provides soothing music and go to a quiet place to relax for a few minutes.
Creating something – whether it’s cooking, painting, making jewelry, writing or photography – can have a profound effect on your stress levels. There is no end to what you can create and no judgement – it’s for you, by you and as a bonus you will also reap other benefits, such as increased levels of happiness. So dust off that piano, grab your gardening tools, or get started on your scrapbook project that you’ve been pushing off – you will end up with much more than a simple creation!
Let me know which one works for you!