Calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, and that’s very important for good health.
– Dalai Lama
What a calm mind can achieve, a stressed mind cannot even attempt. Yet, a lot of people today are in stress and suffering from stress-related disorders like heart disease, obesity, diabetes, depression etc. According to health surveys, stress is increasingly becoming a lifestyle risk factor and India is one of the most stressed countries in the world. So what do we do? Is it possible to get rid of stress? Psychologist Nisha Khanna gives tips to keep our stress levels in check.
1. Physical Workout: Physical activity helps in increasing the production of your brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters, called endorphins. Simple physical activities like jumping, cycling, skipping, swimming, badminton, jogging, yoga, etc can go a long way in stress management. “Walking on treadmill at the speed of 8.5 for 10-15 minutes can prove beneficial,” advises Dr. Nisha Khanna.
2. Travelling: Take out time and plan an outstation trip or go out for a holiday with your friends or family. This will re-engergize your body and help relieve stress. ”Traveling changes your state of mind, and help in releasing stress” says Dr. Khanna.
3. Recreation: In order to release stress, it’s essential to relax your mind. This can be done by watching entertaining serials, happy movies or comedy shows. People interested in art or music should paint or play instruments to de-stress themselves. “We should watch comedy shows and light serials after coming back home post a tiring day,” says the psychologist.
4. Eating Habits: Keep munching healthy snacks like almonds, pistachios, walnuts, pretzels etc. It helps in boosting the immune system and also lowers blood pressure levels to make the body relaxed and stress free. “One should have a heavy and healthy breakfast between 9-10 am and lunch after 2 pm,” says Dr Khanna.
5. Sharing and listening: Getting into the habit of sharing your thoughts with someone and listening to others can help in de-stressing. “Some people are in the habit of listening but they don’t share their opinions whereas some people only speak and don’t listen to others. There should be a balance between sharing and listening.” says the expert.
6. Sound sleep and smile: 6 hours of sleep is a necessity. It is essential to plan your day and work accordingly. A good sleep taps your energy for the rest of the day. Take out a few minutes for laughter therapy. Smiling curbs the stress hormones and controls the blood pressure level in the body. ”It’s essential for us to plan our day in a way that we can take time for minimum 6 hours of sleep,” feels Dr Khanna.
7. Have a relaxation mantra: Positive statements like “I am strong enough to handle this”, “I feel relaxed, I can maintain my cool” can work as a tool of de-stressing yourself in a complex situation. “Having a mantra helps in self motivation and having a positive attitude.”