Stress can impact you emotionally and physically. Sometimes, if you tackle the physical symptoms, it will help with the emotional side, as well. So the next time you feel the stress building up, do yourself a favor and try these simple stress management techniques.

Stretch

When you feel the tension in your muscles, it’s a good idea to get moving. Don’t try anything aggressive. Some simple stretches can work wonders. A good place to start is your neck, shoulders and your back. Remember to breathe as you stretch and never overstretch. If you experience any discomfort, stop right away. And if you don’t feel any stretch, you need to reach a little farther.

To stretch your neck, sit in a straight-back chair with your feet flat on the floor. Sit up straight so that you feel like your lengthening your body. Next try tilting your head, gently, from side to side. Point your right ear toward the right shoulder. Inhale as you lift your head and move it toward the opposite shoulder. Exhale. Now turn your head to look over your left shoulder, being sure not to move either shoulder. Next, try the other shoulder.

For the shoulder stretch, again sit in an upright chair, lengthening your body. As you inhale, lift both of your shoulders up toward your ears like an exaggerated shrug. As you exhale, lower your shoulders as far as you can.

To get the stress out of your back, sit in the straight-back chair with your feet flat on the floor, but slightly apart. Turn your feet out like a penguin. This keeps the stress off your knees. Sit back in the chair, again lengthening your body. Then, exhale and bend forward at your hips going through your legs. If you can reach, place your hands on the floor. If your back won’t allow you to stretch that far, place your hands on your knees while you stretch. Inhale as you come back up.

Visualize


Another way to fight stress is to go to a peaceful place in your mind. Close your eyes and imagine a peaceful place. Now picture yourself in that peaceful place. What do you see? What makes it so peaceful? What word comes to mind? Repeat that word over and over again. If a word doesn’t come easily to mind, try repeating the word peace or soothing or calm. Focus on this word and let your mind go. Try to maintain this peaceful state for as long as you can. Remember, the place you’ve conjured up in your mind is a peaceful place where you want to stay. When you come out of this peaceful state, sit quietly for a moment. Gradually come back to the present.

Breathe


You can also tackle stress just by breathing deeply. Find a comfortable chair in a quiet place. Focus your feelings on a spot below your navel. Touch that spot if it helps you find it. Breathe air into this spot. Feel your stomach filling with air and moving up to your lungs. Now, slowly, breathe out the air through your mouth. Start by emptying your lungs first and moving slowly back down to your spot. Rest a moment before taking another big breath. When you’re ready, repeat the process. You should feel more and more relaxed with each deep breath you take.

These techniques work, but they are short-term fixes. There is more you can do to better manage the stress in your life. First, try to eliminate drugs and alcohol from your system. People use them because they mask the stress but, in fact, they can make your body even more responsive to stress. And when you mask a problem, you’re not as quick to get to the real issue and resolve it.

Another idea is to build stress breaks into your day. For example, take a real lunch break. Get away from your desk, eat with a friend and do not talk about work. Later that afternoon, take a walk. When other employees leave the office for a smoke break, you should take a walk around the parking lot. And when the weekend rolls around, take it easy. Do not pack Saturday and
Sunday was so full of activities that you need a day off to recover from your days off. Finally, schedule your time off. You get vacation time for a reason. A rested employee is a better employee. Even if you can’t get away for a week or two, schedule a long weekend or grant yourself a mental health day.

You should also try to make your life as predictable and routine as possible. Think about your week ahead and take the steps you need to stay healthy. If it’s a week where you’re out several evenings, plan some easy meals. Don’t start any major projects and plan to sleep in on Saturday. Over time, you’ll find that the best way to manage stress is by being good to yourself.

Meditation

Meditation is a mental exercise aimed at getting control over your attention, for you to choose what to focus on, instead of being subject to the unpredictable turn of environmental events. This is best done in a silent place and involves set breathing methods.

Using Alternative Medicine

Stress, either mental or physical, generates a high demand for blood and nutrients due to the elevated metabolism of lipids, proteins, and carbohydrates in the brain and muscle tissues. As a result, the blood and nutrient supply to the liver and other major organs are reduced. Additionally, the elevated body metabolism will produce excessive waste that requires filtering by the liver. Compromised blood supply combined with an increased workload creates a strong challenge to the liver. If this condition runs for an extended period, the liver often becomes fatigued and less efficient. The liver is the predominant organ for blood detoxification, and less effective detoxification of the blood produces a series of stress reactions including insomnia, headache, migraine, nausea, mood swing, bad temper, hand tremor, drowsiness (hepatic encephalopathy), anxiety, anxiousness, and or rashes. Prolonged exposure to such conditions may also lead to depression. In addition to the stress, alcohol, medications, and chemicals are also harmful to the liver. Chronic use of these substances can also make the liver work at a compromised level.