I am super excited to introduce my friend Leesha from Living-Contently.com. We met in in a blogging group and it was an instant connection – we both love talking about how to be happy and healthy. The added bonus? Leesha is an expert on budget-living – something I admit, is not my strongest suit. I love brand name products, but my wallet doesn’t. She has so many fabulous tips on how to beautify and simplify without breaking the bank. I invited her to come chat about simple, budget-friendly ways to balance stress…check it out!
Between maintaining a full-time job and managing a household, my life sometimes gets crazy. Throw in a couple of extra responsibilities and time commitments in the community and otherwise, and I have the recipe for utter chaos. And, when my life gets chaotic, I get stressed.
And, no, I don’t mean the “Oh, I think I’m feeling a little stressed” type of pressure. I mean the “I can’t function like a normal person” type, as in headache, muscle ache, knots in my shoulders, and sometimes even issues with my vision…Once I realized that stress was the primary factor behind all of these issues, I decided it was time to do something about it. So, I came up with a few simple tips for balancing life and managing my stress.
Stress and Your Health
Research suggests stress is one of the leading causes of disease. It is also a key contributor to some of the most commonly reported health issues including inflammation, immune dysfunction, headache, fatigue, chronic pain, and cardiovascular disorder.
You see, the problem with stress is that it leads to a buildup of stress-related hormones, such as cortisol and epinephrine, in your body. When these hormones are out of balance in your body, you get the resulting ill-health factors.
So, what can you do to manage your stress that will actually work? Follow a few simple steps to balance your life and avoid it altogether.
3 Tips to Manage Stress
As a Type A personality, I often find myself taking on too many responsibilities at once, which ultimately leads to the stress overload I mentioned earlier. To help avoid this burden, though, I’ve started relying these practices for managing my stress.
1. Manage Your Schedule
I find myself becoming the most stressed when I’ve taken on too many extra tasks, be it work, home, community, or otherwise. To avoid this level of stress, I have become stricter about managing my own schedule.
Each month, I look at my existing commitments and decide how many additional tasks I can handle, typically around 3 to 5. From there, I keep a running track of how many extra activities/responsibilities I’ve committed to, and once I’ve reached my limit, I say no. By managing my schedule and not letting my schedule railroad me, I avoid stress entirely.
2. Commit to Regular Workouts
I’ve found even if I just get in an extra 20 minutes of walking each day, I feel much better. The key here is that exercise in any form releases endorphins, happy chemicals that combat the malicious effects of the stress hormones we already discussed. By exercising on a regular basis, I reduce my stress levels and find my life to be better balanced.
To make sure I get my activity in on a regular basis, I write it into my schedule like any other appointment and count it among my primary responsibilities/commitments. It’s not something that I just fit in at the end of the day; it’s an appointment like any other. (Remember, we’re managing our schedules to reduce stress, too.)
3. Use Lavender Essential Oil
Sometimes, I find that no matter what I’m doing to manage my schedule and maintain my workout routine, I still get stressed. Lavender essential oil is one of the best things I’ve found to calm my nerves and reduce my stress levels when balancing work and life seem somewhat out of my control.
I apply a drop or two of lavender behind my ears and on the inside of my wrists for an immediate calming effect. To reduce nighttime anxiety, I often add 2 to 3 drops of the oil just beneath my pillow. Want to try it? Check out my shop HERE!
Keeping up with a busy life is draining, but managing your stress is the best way to maintain your health. These tips help me balance my life and avoid stress, and I know they’ll help you too!
What do you do to manage your stress?
Do you have any other stress-busters you regularly practice?
Leesha is the voice of Living Contently. She is a twenty-something wife to the love of her life, her primary motivation to find better options for living well. With a focus on living abundantly and maintaining a budget, Leesha focuses on finding and sharing healthy living options. Join Leesha on her journey at Living Contently, where you will find encouragement to live a healthier life, stick to a budget, and find contentment right where you are. Follow her on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, or Google+ to keep up with daily posts and other tidbits.