stress reducer
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  • Stress Relieving Tips

    Just about everyone experiences stress in one form or another on most days. It can be from an ongoing issue or just an independent occurrence. Most of us consider stress coming from a negative situation, however, even good or happy events can cause stress. Over the long haul, stress not only is damaging to our body, it also can take away our JOY! Here are a few stress relieving tips you can start using right away.

    Take a Slow Deep Breath…and then, take a few more. Within 60 seconds, deep breathing sends signals to your brain to relax your nervous system, which tells your adrenal glands to stop pumping out the stress hormones, cortisol.  As a bonus, deep breathing will also increases your oxygen levels in your bloodstream which gives you more energy.

    Deep Breathing Exercise:

    • Sit, stand or lie down in comfortable position with good posture.
    • Gently take a slightly deeper breath than normal – it should feel natural & comfortable, not forced.
    • Hold it without straining then exhale.
    • Gently take a deeper breath into diaphragm region of upper abdomen; should feel stomach rising as inhale & lowering as exhale.
    • Hold slightly & then exhale, be sure to exhale fully.
    • Repeat for at least a minute.

    Perform this routine periodically through out the day, remembering to keep posture straight. Slouching compresses your lungs which means you won’t get as much air.

    Analyze Your Stress. Separate the things in your life that you find stressful into two categories: things you can do something about, and things you can’t. If you can do something about the stress causer, then do it! If there’s nothing you can do, then accept it and move on – Practice the art of the Law of Least Effort. Know that this moment is as it should be, accepting it as it is, not as I wish it to be. Every problem is an opportunity in disguise. ( from Deepak Chopra’s book The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success  get it HERE)

    Monitor Your Negative Thinking Stress is often the result of fears that are based in our imagination. If you have this tendency, start replacing negative thoughts with positive thoughts. Just changing your attitude can actually alleviate a lot of stress.

     

    Emotional Release Crying is an excellent stress reliever, especially if you have bottled up sadness and grief. Let your unresolved emotions roll down your cheeks and out of your life. Laughter is good medicine, too. Even if you are angry or depressed, just say ha ha hee hoo hoo. Soon, real laughter will come…and with it, joyful tension release.

    Meditation One of the ultimate goals of yoga is rest—and simple, quiet meditation accomplishes this quite effectively.

    • Sit with your head, neck, and trunk in alignment and your legs comfortably crossed.
    • Observe the quiet flow of your breath for several minutes.
    • Then practice soham meditation (pronounced “so-hum”).
    • On each inhalation, mentally say ‘so’.
    • On each exhalation, mentally say ‘hum’.
    • Stay with this mantra for at least 5 minutes.
    • If you are more spiritual centered you could say “Let God” or “Praise God”

    It will help you become one with your inner being, and soon your stress will melt away.

    Cultivate a Meditative Mind For example, When you walk, walk mindfully. Feel the cool grass under your feet. Notice your surroundings. Notice the brightly colored flowers, the beautiful trees, a single bird flying in the sky. By staying in the present moment, you will fall in love with your life. Then anything that touches you—even stress, anger, anxiety—becomes meditation. 

    Write it out. If you are having a hard time dealing, then journal it. Just be sure to end with some positives. Also, keeping a Gratitude Journal will help keep you focused on all the good in your life.

    Take a Relaxation Break To prevent the buildup of stress, Spend at least 5 to 10 minutes in savasana (corpse pose) daily.

    • Lie on your back with your legs and arms a comfortable distance from your torso.
    • Close your eyes, and let your muscles melt into the floor.
    • Then let the lungs do their job. Take a deep breath.
    • Bring your attention to the sensation of the breath flowing in and out of your nostrils, and notice how the exhalation is slightly warm and the inhalation is moderately cool.
    • If your mind wanders, gently bring your focus back to the breath. When thoughts arise, let them go.

    This practice balances the nervous system and fosters a relaxed, clear state of mind.

    Viparita Karani. (legs up the wall)

    • Lay on the floor with your bottom next to a wall.
    • While keeping your legs up the wall, elevate your pelvis on a bolster or folded blankets.
    • 5 minutes does the trick for me

    This pose stimulates the blood pressure sensors in the neck and upper chest, triggering reflexes that reduce nerve input into the adrenal glands, slow the heart rate, slow the brain waves, relax blood vessels, and reduces blood pressure.

    Other Stress Relief Yoga Poses Shoulder stand (sarvangasana), plow pose (halasana), half spinal twist (ardha matsyendrasana), locust pose (shalabhasana), and lion pose (simhasana) Check out this site with photos for poses and more!
    Get at least 7 or 8 hours of sleep at night. And if possible, don’t wake to a blaring alarm clock since the noise causes a flood of stress hormones to be released.

    Exercise regularly but don’t overdo. Exercise is a valuable release for pent-up stresses.  Just Know your limits and don’t over exercise, since it can cause stress on the adrenals.

    Bath of Ginger & Baking Soda for Quick Relief.

    • To a hot bath add
    • 1/3 cup ginger or( 3 drops doTERRA Ginger Essential Oil)
    • 1/3 cup baking soda
    • Stir and get in
    • (Then, even if you are not a singer, sing in the tub!
    • Even if you’re not a dancer, dance with your arms. Spontaneous music and movement will help you get back in touch with your carefree side.)

    The circulation-boosting effects of ginger and the alkaline properties of baking soda will counteract some of stress’s effects on your body.

    I hope this gave you a few things to try right NOW!

    Hugs, (another stress reliever)

    Kathy

    Check out These 5 Essential Oils to help you feel Less Stress

    April 2, 2017 • Essential Oils, Healthy Hints, Mind Managing • Views: 232

  • Cancer Prevention Lifestyle

     

    Are you aware that less than 10 % of all cancer cases are thought to be related to genetic risk factors. The remainder—90 %—appear to be triggered by lifestyle and environmental factors. Taking control of your Lifestyle can significantly reduce your odds of getting cancer and is way more powerful than simply trying to detect it. This means reducing your toxic intake as much as possible. I certainly don’t want to be living in a bubble, however, there are many things I can do to improve my odds. Today I am going to share with you a few of the cancer prevention things I am doing.

    Does this guarantee I’ll never get cancer? No, I do have a strong family history of it. But if I do get it, my body will be better equipped to fight it off!

    My Cancer Prevention Lifestyle

    tummy-painHaving a cancer prevention lifestyle means seeking out organically-produced items or creating my own. I am talking about food, clothing, cleaning products, personal care products, etc. Because it’s the accumulated exposure from all these varied sources that end up wreaking havoc, it all matters.

    Some steps you can take to lower your risk:

    • Don’t smoke – I thought I’d start with this one because we have been inindated with it, so just don’t!grapes-500x500
    • Limit alcohol – Your cancer risk increases with the amount of alcohol you drink and the length of time you’ve been drinking regularly. So, limit yourself to less than 1 drink per day as even small amounts increase risk according to research studies. (You can get the polyphenols and resveratrols from dark skinned grape juice without the negatives.)
    • Maintain a healthy weight – There are lots of suggestions on this blog. If you don’t know where to begin, check out my Back to Basics – Steps for a Healthy Body 
    • Be physically active – This can help you maintain a healthy weight, which, in turn, helps prevent cancer.  According to the Department of Health and Human Services, a healthy adult should engage in at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity (like a brisk walk) or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity weekly, plus strength training at least twice a week. Get some ideas 
    • healthy bodyEat healthy – That means lots of fresh (or frozen) fruits, veggies and beans, healthy fats (nuts, seeds, virgin olive oil, virgin organic coconut oil, etc), lean animal products, etc. AND keeping all types of processed food to a bare minimum. Anything high in calories and low in nutrition should be reserved for extra special occasions only.
    • Read ingredient labels – It is mind boggling how many artificial and toxic honestly-labeled-foodsingredients are in not only our foods, but household and personal care products too. I go for the natural or make it myself. (again lots on this blog) Just because it says ‘Natural” on the front of the bottle doesn’t mean it is – READ!
    • Reduce hazard chemical contact – An example: ‘Flame-retardant’ materials which were created and required for our safety but have now proven to be more of a hazard than helpful (removed from children’s pajamas in the 70’s). Get list of offenders HERE
    • Get your vitamin D & then cover-up – There is some research showing that vitamin D may help in prevention. As a very general guide, you need to expose about 40 % of your 0701161623aentire body to the sun for approximately 20 minutes when the sun is at its zenith. If you plan to be in the sun longer then use a sunscreen. Some ingredients in the sunscreen may be cancerous. I know a vicious circle so, I make my own. Get the recipe 
    • Avoid electromagnetic fields – As much as possible, limit your exposure and protect yourself from radiation produced by cell phones, as well as from radiation-based medical scans, including dental x-rays, CT scans, and mammograms. In other words, reduce your exposure by having such tests only when absolutely necessary.
    • Get enough restorative sleep – Poor sleep can interfere with your melatonin production, which is associated with an increased risk of insulin resistance and weight gain, both of which can contribute to cancer. Contact me (Kathy@kathyskinner.com) for some essential oil combinations that work wonders to enhance your sleep.
    • Learn stress management tools – Stress from all causes is a major contributor to disease. Even the Center for Disease Control states that 85 % of disease is driven by emotional factors. Long deep breathes usually help with the immediate stuff. Yoga, walking, meditation and essential oils can help with immediate and overall. Out the Learn about the Benefits of Walking   spiritual
    • Stay Spiritually connected – There are many researchers who believe that certain beliefs, attitudes, and practices associated with being a spiritual person influence health in a positive way. I personally stay spiritually connected through prayer, meditation, Bible study, worship and regularly meeting with members of my faith based community.

    I don’t know if I will get cancer or how long I will live but I can tell you that I am very healthy and have lots of energy to do the things I want. I feel very blessed and wish the same for you!

    Kathy

    NOTE: The advice shared in document has not been evaluated by the FDA. The products and methods recommended are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease, nor is it intended to replace proper medical help. Kindly understand that essential oils work to help to bring the body into balance – thus helping the body’s natural defenses to restore homeostasis

    Sources and References:

    Caring.com; Melanie Haiken; cancer.gov; MayoClinic.org; HealthUCSD.edu; ajcn.org; aromaticscience.com; Healthwithfood.org

    October 9, 2016 • Essential Oils, Healthy Hints • Views: 449

  • Wonderful Benefits of Walking

    The daffodils are blooming, tulips are poking up through the dirt and the grass is getting greener after it winter dormancy. Yes, Spring is in the air. With the sun shining more days, you may be feeling the nudge to get outside. Go with your instinct, get out for a walk. Better yet make it your new daily Springtime activity!

    March 30th is ‘Take a Walk in the Park Day’. The American Heart Association has dedicated April 6th as ‘National Walk Day’. The entire month of May is ‘National Walk Month’. Are you getting the hint? Need a few more incentives? Here’s a list  of some of the benefits of walking that might give you some more encouragement:

    • It Can Help Curbs Diabetes  According to the American Diabetes Association you can begin with a 5 minute slow-paced saunter, stretch for ten minutes, followed by a walk at moderate pace. The idea is to do something everyday building upon it to a longer and/or faster pace.

    healthypeople walking

    • It Lowers Risk of Cardiovascular Problems  A study by the Harvard Medical School revealed walking 20 minutes day can alleviate the risks of cardiovascular ailments by 30%. It does this by enhancing the level of HDL (good) cholesterol, and curbing the production of LDL (bad) cholesterol.
    • Helps Give Your Memory a Boost A recent study from the Boston memoryHealthcare System discovered that adults who took around 10,000 steps or more daily performed better on memory tests than those who walked less.

     

    • Helps in Preventing Cancer A Harvard University Women’s Health Study published their findings in 2012 that walking for 4 hours a week can possibly decrease the chances of cancer by almost 54%.

    Hiking

    • It Helps to Reduce Stress. A five to ten minute walk can help to clear your head. The change of the scenery and focusing on breathing can help lower your cortisol, so your stress is lower.  Researchers are discovering that surrounding yourself with nature can be one of the most powerful stress-relievers out there. According to a study in the journal, Environmental Science & Technology, researchers discover that people experienced the largest boosts to their mood and self-esteem after just spending five minutes outside. For even more stress relieving techniques while walking read Thich Nhat Hanh’s, A Guide to Meditation Walking.

    Tone-the-Butt-With-Walking-Step-9

    • It Helps to Tone Your Butt and Thighs Many fitness professionals say that the ideal way to tone your thighs and butts is to walk as fast as you can. They suggest you try to squeeze your butt after every ten steps.
    • It Helps to Improve Balance Studies have proven that walking on natural, uneven grounds, such as hiking trails and steps, reduces chances of slip and fall injuries in the elderly and enhances their balance.balancing
    • It Boosts Immune Function. All you need to do is walk for a half hour every day. This provides a boost to the cells in your body that are assigned to attack bacteria.

    With all these benefits, walking is the foundation for good health and makes life better!

    How about starting TODAY!

    March 28, 2016 • Healthy Hints, Mind Managing • Views: 1209

  • Gratitude and Your Health

    Thankfulness or gratitude is a popular topic in November. You will even find people posting each day on face book something for which they are grateful. Since my focus is on helping others towards a better and healthier lifestyle, I actually get excited for them because I know gratitude and your health go hand-in-hand!
    Gratitude, according to Wikipedia, is “a feeling or attitude in acknowledgement of a benefit that one has received or will receive.”

    Multiple research studies show that those who practice an ‘Attitude of Gratitude’ experience:

    • an increase of happiness
    • significantly increases the body’s natural antibodies
    • reduced stress
    • tend to have healthier blood pressure and heart rate
    • tend to be more creative problem solvers
    • bounce back more quickly from adversity
    • have stronger social relationships

    This isn’t to say these people have lives where everything is going great. It just means that they are acknowledge their blessings. They are grateful for the good that is in their life, for simple pleasures, for everything they receive from others and from the universe.
    Unfortunately many people don’t even take 5 minutes to reflect on the good in their lives. They actually spend most of their waking hours on auto-pilot. Their attention is on being upset or annoyed by what is lacking in their life or by what they perceive others are doing to them. Unfortunately this lack of gratitude just leads to more of the same (Law of Attraction) and worst more stress which we all know is very harmful to our health and overall wellness.

    COMPLAINING LEADS TO CHEATING

    If we focus on an aspect of our lives that we don’t particularly like, how fat your are or deprived you feel by not having sweets, then you will just amplify those tempationsawful feelings. This will make it much more difficult to resist that latte or bag of chips later in the day. What to do? Deliberately count the blessing that are in your life right now BEFORE you reach your ideal weight. This will increase your happiness and peacefulness making it much easier to take a walk or brew a cup of herbal tea instead of chowing down the forbidden foods.

    GRATITUDE INCREASES CONFIDENCE

    Focusing on all the wonderful things in your life automatically causes you to feel more confident about yourself. Even when you reach a plateau (and we all do) it is easier to remain peaceful and stick to your plans, when practicing gratitude.

    GRATITUDE GIVES YOU MORE PERSONAL POWER

    Ever notice that when you are aware of how ‘right’ your circumstances are, you feel more in control and less like a helpless victim? That is the power of the Attitude of Gratitude!

    You might wonder what in the world you can possibly find to be grateful about.

    The truth is that your world is full of blessings, whether you notice them or not. Bottom line: ingratitude is a habit and any habit can be changed.

    Invest in yourself today by noticing the countless blessings in your life. A few minutes here and there a couple times a week is a start, however daily consistency is what pays out with HUGE DIVIDENDS!

    Do you regularly practice the Attitude of Gratitude? How has it changed your life, health, relationships? Please share below in the comments to help inspire others.

    Wishing you Health, Joy & Happiness!

    Kathy

    November 8, 2014 • Healthy Hints, Mind Managing • Views: 1070