Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wild Woman Wednesday

Wild women are cool, calm and collected… yeah right, when we’re asleep! Most of the time we’re running around, planning, juggling, hangin’ with friends, rockin’ with the fam, working, going to school, religious activities/worship, parties, dancing, laughing… and STRESSING!!!!!!!

Oooohhh, yeah, that would be us, yes, girls?!?!? Too many commitments, too many things to do, too many variables, too little time and energy. Its part of life, it happens, but what can we do about it?

Rise up and exercise your “manage that stress” muscle! Just today I gave a seminar on stress management, so who better to share it with than my wild women buddies here in nutshell form.

What Is Stress
1 -- Eustress (positive stress), caused by happy things like vacation, new job, buying a home, etc. It motivates, energizes, and is usually short term.
2 – Distress (negative stress) caused by biggies (death, divorce, job loss) to everyday stressors (financial problems, work issues, relational conflicts), and can be both long and short term.

Stress and Your Body
Can you spell wreaks havoc? Yes, the “fight or flight” hormones kick into gear, producing glucose and fat and all kinds of nasties which can raise your blood glucose levels (look out, diabetes), and negatively impact every body system. This is NOT a good thing.

How Can You Reduce Stress?
1 – Body Awareness: be aware of how your body feels when it begins (nervous, sweaty palms, body tension, shallow breathing) so you can immediately use stress management methods to nip it in the bud.
2 – Breathing exercises – try inhaling slowly/deeply through your nose for a count of five, hold for a count of five, and then release the breathe slowly through your nose for a final count of five. Repeat several times.
3 – Progressive Relaxation – progressively from toes to the top of your head squeeze/tighten your muscles, then release.
4 – Meditate/Prayer/Forgiveness: focus on something that makes you happy, quietly sit in the park and enjoy nature, pray anywhere/anytime. Also, let go of those grudges and the negative stuff you’ve been hanging on to for all this time! Release, and then relax!
5 – Refute Irrational Ideas (or as I call it, Projecting). For example, you could think: “I’m late for work, the boss is gonna fire me, then I won’t be able to pay the mortgage, I’ll lose my home, and I’ll wind up homeless on the street!” Or you could think “Really? Seriously? Maybe I’ll just be a few minutes late, and it might not even be a big thing. If the boss mentions it, I’ll apologize, and try to plan a little better tomorrow morning.” BIG difference in outcome, yes? Just think about the worst thing that could feasibly happen and then get to the reality of the situation.
6 – Exercise & Nutrition (no big surprise here) – eat clean and balanced meals, drink lots of water, work out regularly.
7 - LAUGH! Even if you fake it your body won't know it, and those endorphins will start swimming around tickling you from the inside out and making you feel all kinds of good. Even better, get with some friends and laugh over a good movie, or just sit and grab a cuppa and enjoy!

Overall, just remember – each day you have the power of CHOICE and you can choose to react, or you can choose to respond. It’s your choice… – you have the power to enrich your life and manage your stress head on -- you are a WILD WOMAN! And by the way, if you find that all this doesn't help you manage stress effectively no matter how hard you try, get some professional help -- ain't NO SHAME and I've been there, done that, got the tee shirt, and am feeling much better, thank you very much!

Now go out there and tackle your day with a delicious vengeance!



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