2020 has presented some major challenges for so many of us, adding some unwanted stress and insecurity. It’s important to remember that while we can’t always control our circumstances, we can control how we respond to them. Unwanted stress can wreak havoc on so many vital systems in our bodies, but the benefits of learning how to better manage them are endless. By practicing these techniques, you’ll experience better sleep, a stronger immune system, easier to control body weight, a better mood, and the ability to better cope with challenging situations.
TAKE A WALK.
We all know how powerful exercise it. It is absolutely the best stress reliever that can work in mere minutes. This can be as simple as walking around the block at work, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or taking a walk in the park after dinner. Walking is a very simple but effective way to reset your mind and body.
I talk about gratitude a lot. I come back to this for almost everything; it is absolutely the most important habit we can create in our lives. Gratitude, gratitude, gratitude. If you’re reading this, that means you’re alive, you’re able to read—that in itself is something to appreciate. Things are certainly not always the way we wish they were, but what if instead of always thinking that something is falling apart, it is actually all falling into place.
CHANGE YOUR ENVIRONMENT.
This is a big one. If you find yourself in an energetic slump or maybe your mind is fixated on something that is causing you stress, change your environment/surroundings. There are many different ways that we can do this. One of my favourite things to do is go to a coffee shop and change my work space; I find a change of work space sparks new creativity and shifts my mindset. Another one of my favourite things to do at home is to de-clutter, re-organize, and clear out my home. If your home is cluttered, so is your mind. Put on some music, light a candle or a diffuser, and make a space in your home that makes you happy and makes you feel good.
Breath work was for a long time one of my least favourite and uncomfortable practices to get into. It wasn’t until I started learning some simple breathing techniques that I really started to notice the effects and benefits it had on calming my mind and my body. This is perfect for when you’re sitting in your office or in a meeting—you can actually practice this technique without anyone even noticing. Try it right now! Take a deep breath in through your nose, fill your belly and lungs full with air, count to three on the inhale, hold for a second at the top, and slowly exhale through your nose for three counts again.
Vanessa Jahnke is the founder of PURE Gym & Juicery in Penticton, BC. She is a certified holistic health coach with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and the creator of Healthy for Life, a monthly online wellness subscription. Her blog is loaded with healthy, easy to make recipes and easy to implement tools to achieve a happier, healthier life.
vanessajahnke.ca | @iamvanessajahnke
Article was published in The Good Life magazine.