Habits to Remain Stress Resilient
We all have stress in our life. Some of it is all the have to’s, and some of it is good stress like a new job. Whether good or not so good stress it can create a sense of overwhelm. When it comes to recovery, stress is the number 1 reason for relapse. It is also one of the biggest causes of physical health problems. So it is important to create habits that make you less vulnerable to stress and also have the ability to bounce back when stress can’t be avoided.
So here are the 5 areas where you can create some armour to protect you from stress:
– Most of us need from 7 to 9 hours of sleep. When we are fatigued we are much more vulnerable to things taking hold and stressing us out, when we are rested and refreshed it’s easier to let things roll off.
– Eating a healthy diet can really go a long way in increasing our energy level which again makes us better prepared to handle stress. Processed foods, sugar, caffeine, fatty fried foods, all take a lot of energy for our physical body to digest with little nutritional value. Strive for more plant based foods and make the processed and junk food more of a treat than a regular thing.
– There is no way around it, even if you don’t like doing it we need to move our bodies. If you can do it in nature you get bonus points for helping you feel more relaxed and increase your resiliency. Find something you enjoy and try to fit it in most days, even starting with taking a 10 minute walk on your lunch break is a great place to begin. Exercise can increase our ability to relax and it is an important part of keeping our body healthy and increasing our energy.
Support and Leisure Activities
– I put these together but they absolutely could be looked at individually. I combined them because what better way to have fun and enjoy your down time by doing something you love with someone you want to be with. Knowing you have a support system goes a long way in lowering our stress level. Having activities that you anticipate, where you can be creative, play all help you let go of the daily stressors. Smart Recovery calls them Vital Absorbing Creative Interests, make a list of leisure activities and your support system and have it somewhere handy at all times.
– This can be a religious practice, but when I think of spirituality I actually mean things that fill your spirit, lift your heart. It can be as simple as noticing and being in awe over a beautiful sunset, a meditation practice, reading inspirational stories, taking a yoga class. If you don’t have something like this already now is the time to get out of the box and try some new things.
Pay attention to self talk
– So last but certainly not least, this is where we have a lot of power when it comes to stress. It is not the situation but our perception of the situation that creates our stress, so pay attention to what you are saying to yourself. If you tend to go to worst case scenario then dial it down a notch, things rarely turn out as bad as we think they will. Is it really that big a deal? Will the world end if you are a few minutes late? Are you constantly looking for what is wrong with a situation rather than what is right about it? Maybe it’s time for a thought tune up, try to make it through a day without a negative thought, it will take some practice but it is a great way to get in touch with how you talk to yourself.