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Do not let stress stop you from enjoying your life

Frustrated by the difficulties attached to travel because of Covid-19?

Desperate to get away?

Being stuck in one place can be challenging. Many of us are feeling the need for a break from our new normal routine – of working from home and physically distancing.

There are so many things that we can allow to affect us day to day: sitting in Harbour Road traffic in the mornings, spilling coffee on your outfit, a bike bumping into your side mirrors, running late for an appointment.

For the next few months let’s try and monitor our feelings. Using some of the tips below can assist in managing your stress or feelings of anxiety:

Breathe

This is a challenging one for me. I’m currently waiting on medical results and all I want to do is march into the doctor’s office and demand that they see me immediately. Of course I cannot do that. So when I feel myself getting ready to lose it, I take a deep breath. First, I hold it for a count of five while repeating: “I can handle this.” I then exhale while repeating: “I can handle this.” Do this until you feel yourself calming down. It really works! Just try to remember that you can always control your breath and, since they are connected, it is therefore also possible to control your stress and your emotions.

Exercise

Most of us cannot stop everything and exercise whenever we get stressed. But how about taking a walk at lunchtime or before work? Exercise helps deplete stress hormones and releases mood-enhancing chemicals which help us cope with stress better.

Plan fun activities

I was looking at a dress that I had planned to wear to a special event that was cancelled by Covid last year. Now that things have opened up a bit, now that vaccines are happening, I fully plan to say yes to all things possible. Even if you have gained a few pounds over the past year and no longer fit into the same size of clothing – buy a temporary wardrobe; plan something fun. Even if you don’t feel like it or you feel too exhausted to engage with anything, try to spend a little time doing the things that bring you joy: cook a delicious meal, spend time with friends; host a sip and paint or just sit on the beach and relax. Anything that you enjoy is a great way to boost your spirits.

Thankfulness

What is also helpful whenever you start to feel your blood boil is if you look for things to be thankful for: I missed my ski vacation but I’m thankful for the means to remodel my home; I know I can’t physically see my family, but I can still video call until I decide to travel again. Let's use our challenges as opportunities to help us to become more conscious.

Stress is meant to alert us and not to be a punishment. Try and use stress as a wake-up call to stop the thought pattern that is fuelling your stressed state and implement a more empowering one. This is an awesome way to improve your quality of life, to retrain your brain and B-Active For Life.

Betty Doyling is a certified fitness trainer and figure competitor with more than a decade of experience. Look for B. ActiveForLife on Facebook

If you can control your breath you can control your stress levels and emotions

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Published March 17, 2021 at 8:00 am (Updated March 15, 2021 at 10:46 am)

Do not let stress stop you from enjoying your life

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