Reduce Your Everyday Stress
You can’t avoid stress completely. But you can control how you react to it. At the Cancer Integrative Medicine Program at Rush University Medical Center, Angela Johnson, Dipl OM, LAc, MSTOM, MPH, teaches strategies for dealing with stress and anxiety to patients and their families. Johnson offers the following stress-control tips.
Practice mindfulness meditation. As stressful thoughts arise, acknowledge them, then try to let them go and focus on your body. Think only of the present moment. For example, if you’re grinding your teeth or tensing your muscles, take note and relax.
Breathe deeply. In times of stress, breathe! When you inhale, allow your belly to fill and rise. When you exhale, let your belly sink toward your spine. Do this four to six times; eventually, work your way up to breathing this way for five to 15 minutes a day.
Experiment. No single stress-reduction strategy works for everyone. You might find that yoga, exercise, journaling or something else helps you de-stress. Figure out what works best for you.
Looking for other ways to lower stress in your life, read “Ideas for Relieving Stress.”
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