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Phil Chave
Phil Chave
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50 Stress Busting Ideas for Your Well-being, Greater Good and Improved Health - part two

A Comprehensive Guide to Stress Management



Manage the stress in your life, before it manages you!
The following activities will help you:
  • Alter, avoid or accept your stressors
  • Build your resources or strengths, and
  • Change your attitude or perception of the stressors

Getting Started

Before you look through this article, stop to think about what kinds of things might be causing stress for you. First, identify a stressor, like a family problem or a difficulty with a co-worker.

Then choose an activity (or two) that you think would help you deal with it. Apply yourself to doing that particular activity for a day, a week, or a month. You may want to remind yourself with notes on your mirror, refrigerator or car dashboard, or by wearing a piece of jewellery that reminds you of your commitment to practicing the activity in your daily life. Then, look back and note the difference in your stress level. Return to the list of activities whenever you like and repeat the process.

13. Re-label Your Experiences

Everyone tends to label their experiences. The labels you choose for stressful situations influence their effect on you. List your stressors and write down the meaning you assign to each. Cross out the negative meaning and assign a more positive statement.

Put your troubles into a broader perspective. Step outside the situation and ask yourself, "Will this matter in 50 years? Or in even in five years?"

Try to find ways to be grateful for whatever happens to you. Remember: We may not be able to control what happens to us, but we can control our attitude toward it. Practice re-labeling with others.

14. Learn to Rely on Supportive Relationships

Draw strength from friends and family members. You may have some friends who help you to make decisions, to feel loved, and to feel hopeful. Call them. Talk to them. Tell them how you feel. You may have some friends or family members who make you angrier or sadder. It might be good not to talk to them when you feel stress. Anger makes stress worse.

15. Get Help

Stress may become unmanageable, to the point that we feel that there is no way out. If you are feeling overwhelmed or unable to deal with stress on your own, seek professional help. Your doctor can help rule out physical problems. If no physical problems exist, you may want to consider talking with a professional counselor or minister who can help you understand your feelings. If you are feeling so stressed that you are considering taking your life, GET HELP IMMEDIATELY!

16. Try Autogenics

In this technique, your mind tells your body how to feel. Find a place where you can sit comfortably. Close your eyes and try to clear your mind. It may help to breathe slowly and deeply a few times to put your mind at rest.

Next, focus your attention on your left arm and repeat in your mind, "My left arm feels warm and heavy" until it actually feels that way. Do the same thing with the right arm, left leg, right leg and so on.

End the exercise as you began, by breathing deeply. Open your eyes and do a full-body stretch. Try using this technique for 10 minutes a session.

17. Surrender

Surrender doesn't mean giving up. It means letting go of things you cannot change. You may worry that an earthquake or flood is going to destroy you and your family. While it is possible that you cold move to a safer house or city, it may be better to throw away that worry. You may want to close your eyes and mentally tie the floods in a knot and throw them in the trash or lock them in a closet. Decide which of your stresses you cannot change. Think about ways to adapt to them. If you're unsure about whether you should surrender to something in your life, seek professional help.

18. Control Life Changes

Do what you can to schedule life changes so they don't occur all at once. For example, if becoming a parent is in your near future, prepare the baby's room and clothing well in advance, and try to plan the birth so that is doesn't coincide with other life changes such as a new job or moving to a new city. When one part of your life changes, make an effort to continue to do the things that bring you pleasure?don't give up all the things you love to do simply because one part of your life has changed.

19. Breath Deeply

Deep breathing is a basic technique for relaxation. Breathing slowly and deeply can help turn off stress and turn on peaceful feelings.

Find a place where you can sit comfortably. Chose your eyes. Inhale slowly and deeply through your nose until you have filled your stomach cavity as full as possible. Purse your lips and exhale slowly. Try doing this activity for five minutes.

20. Stretch

Muscle tension is a common reaction to stress. Here are some common stretches you can do at home or at work:

Luxury Massage Neck Stretch While standing or sitting up straight, gently tip your head to the left, hold for 30 seconds, then return to center. Do the same on the right side.

Side Stretch With your feet comfortably apart and right hand on your hip, reach your left arm overhead and stretch to the right side. Hold for 30 seconds, then switch sides.

Chest and Back Stretch While standing, clasp your hands behind you, arms straight, then lift your arms up slightly. Hold for 30 seconds. Next, clasp your hands in front of you. Rotate your shoulder, reaching as far forward as you can. Hold for 30 seconds.

Progressive Muscular Relaxation This 15-minute technique can help make you aware of the difference between tension and relaxation. The process is to tighten the muscle, release the tension, then feel the difference.

Settle back comfortably, either sitting or lying down. Clench your left fist. Clench it tightly and study the tension in the hand and in the forearm. Notice how it feels. Hold the tension for a few seconds. And now relax the left hand. Notice the difference between tension and relaxation.

Do this with the right hand and every major muscle group of your body. You can start with your hands or move from head to toe.

21. Exercise

Physically active people handle stress better than those who are not active. Make time in your schedule for regular exercise. Choose an aerobic activity you can do 20-30 minutes every other day. Walking, running, swimming, and bicycling are all excellent choices. Give yourself five minutes of warm-up and five minutes of cool-down each session. Do it with friends who can help you keep your commitment, or do it alone and use the time for reflection.

22. Rest

A well-rested body is more resistant to stress. Try getting to bed at a reasonable hour, especially if you're under stress. Master the art of getting ready for bed. Do something relaxing before bedtime?a peaceful walk, a warm bath, a warm drink. Try to let go of the trouble of the day. As you lie down, visualize your body restoring itself with slumber.

23. Find Peace

Take time to fill your spiritual reservoir each day. Different things work for different people. Some fill their reservoir through prayer, meditation, thought, or pondering inspirational writings. Others fill it through admiring the beauties of nature or gazing into a star-filled sky. Do what brings you peace.

24. Think Positive

Having a positive approach to life can help us meet stresses head-on.
Try the following techniques:

Positive Self-Talk Tell yourself "I can," then set your mind to meet the challenge at hand.

Mental Creation Think through a stressful situation before it occurs, and plan how you will react to it. Be as detailed as you can. Envision yourself being successful.

Action Plan Plan for success. Always make an alternate plan (plan B and C) in case the one your rehearsed doesn't work.

25. Nourish Your Body

A properly nourished body is more resistant to stress. Adopt a consistent practice of healthy eating. Choose foods high in fibre and low in saturated fats and cholesterol. Eat plenty of vegetables, fruits and whole grain products. Limit your use of salt, sugar, fat, caffeine and alcohol. Use the recommendations found in the Food Guide Pyramid.

My sincere thanks to Stephen F. Duncan, Ph.D., Human Development Specialist, and to the MSU Extension Service,
for allowing me to recreate this article. Their copyright is acknowledged and retained.


Go to     Part 1     Part 2     Part 3     Part 4     of the Stress Busting Ideas Article.


My final message to you is this: If you are suffering from stress, or the effects of stress, try some of the ideas above. Stress has been linked to such things as depression, anxiety, panic attacks, low self esteem, social anxiety,chronic constipation or IBS, heart disease, lowered immune system, rheumatoid arthritis, headaches, and now there are even suggestions that cancer may be linked to stress. Stress is not something to carry around for long periods, it produces more and more ill-health and early treatment is recommended. If you live near The Haven Healing Centre, Blagdon, I'd be delighted to see you. Don't wait! The sooner we start treatments, the sooner you are likely to see improvement in your condition.
Put an end to stress related illness. My approach involves talking, healing and treatments combined to reflect your own preferences. Please call Phil Chave on 01761 462722 to make your appointment or to talk about a treatment plan structured around your needs.

Don't wait. Make your appointment today. You'll be glad you did!



Relaxation at the Beach, a CD by Philip Chave
Relaxation at the Beach - Total stress reduction in a flash.
Do you regularly suffer from stress? Few of us get away with it for long. We all need a certain amount of stress, but the constant onslaught that we face from the work environment and other sources can wear us down over time.

Without a suitable antidote we can become stressed into illness, relationship breakup, unemployment, and alienated from friends and family. Reducing the stress in our lives should now be one of our MAIN PRIORITIES.

If you want to know how easy it is, visit our Relaxation at the Beach page for more details. A CD by Phil Chave, international therapist, The Haven Healing Centre.
Available worldwide as an audio CD or by download as an MP3.



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Copyright  ©  Philip Chave 2003-www.distanthealer.co.uk -- www.thehavenhealingcentre.co.uk  All rights reserved.
DISCLAIMER: This information is not presented by a medical practitioner and is for educational and informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read.

The Haven Healing Centre is located at: The Haven, Street End Lane, Blagdon, Bristol, BS40 7TW