Many of us walk around in a constant state of stress. And the worst part is? We don’t realize it. Because we’re so accustomed to living in fight-or-flight mode, stress becomes a normal feeling. Rather than utilize the right bodily processes, we run on adrenaline. Our cortisol—and copious cups of coffee—fuel the day. As you can imagine, burnout is knocking at the door. This toxic cycle also diminishes fertility, sleep quality, blood sugar balance, and much more. In order to create lasting change, we must first confront the fact that we’re stressed. After, we can minimize our stressors. To help you get to a place of zen, below are simple tips to lower daily stress. And while they may be simple, they’re effective. When implemented consistently, you’ll notice a change in your demeanor, mood, and energy.
WHAT CAUSES STRESS?
A lot. And unfortunately, we’re inundated by constant stressors in our modern day lives. Possible stressors include a lack of exercise, minimal sleep, feeling tremendous pressure (professionally, financially, etc.), facing significant changes in your life, being worried about something, having little control over a situation, overwhelming responsibilities, parenthood, experiencing discrimination or abuse, and more. Nutritionally-speaking, eating foods that are inflammatory can also cause stress.
HOW CAN I AVOID STRESS?
That’s nearly impossible—however!—there are a variety of ways to manage your stress. Rather than let your stress get the most of you, let it empower you to make non-negotiable changes. After all, your stress will continue to cause burden until you choose to do something different. And while change can be stressful in itself, the result could be life-changing.
3 simple tips to lower daily stress
When it comes to simple tips to lower daily stress, look no further than what you can manage. Because there are so many stressors we can’t control, it’s important to focus on what we can. Ultimately, that comes down to boundaries, nourishment, and habit-building.
Step one: SET BOUNDARIES
If you’re a people-pleaser, like me, begin by setting healthy boundaries. You’ll begin to avoid certain people, tasks, and experiences that currently cause stress. In turn, you’ll make space for more of what makes you feel grounded, inspired, and happy. When you get clear on what you’re comfortable with—and what you’re not—you’ll protect yourself from relationships that may cross certain boundaries. While it takes practice, standing firm to what you will (and won’t) allow into your life is game-changing. In doing so, your stress levels will naturally lower. Highly recommend this book to help you get started.
Step two: Nourish your body
When your body hits its limit with inadequate nutrition, we see dysfunction, illness, inflammation, and pain. Stress breaks the body down, burning through important nutrients to keep things humming along. This often manifests in our moods, digestion, hormones, thyroid, joints, and immune system. Is your diet causing digestive stress, constant bloating, or other signs of inflammation? Consider swapping some of your go-to packaged foods with whole, minimally processed alternatives. You’ll automatically lower stress in your body. These are my favorite swaps. You can also sign up for my 7-Day Blood Sugar Reset for a more formal guide.
Ultimately, when it comes to minimizing added stressors, it’s important to return to nourishment. Inadequate nutrition is often one of the largest—and most common—stressors on the body. Many new clients come to me in a chronic state of under-eating and undernourishing themselves. On the flip side, some clients lack nutrient density, leaving them overfed and under-nourished. Both leave the body fighting for resources. Which, as you can guess, is a huge stressor. Over time, the body can’t self-regulate. Balance is thrown out the window. However, you can take care of your physical body through intentional nourishment. In turn, improving its resilience to life’s inevitable stressors.
Step three: establish supportive habits
Our brain and our body will always seek safety. Survival is the default mode—so is choosing comfort over discomfort. But if we’re simply going through the motions, disconnected and out of touch with our body’s needs, we won’t realize that our habits are doing more harm than good. We’re too comfortable with allowing stress to guide our decision-making. If that rings a bell, it might be an opportunity to get curious and identify some habit shifts. This might mean dropping that diet that’s causing stress—once and for all. Or maybe, you need to get in the habit of starting your day off in a slower, more peaceful manner. At the end of the day, in order to understand what is working for us, we have to pay attention to what isn’t. We have to acknowledge how our body responds to the demands we place on it (and the stressors we encounter).
I’ll leave you with this: how can you create more awareness? What needs are not being met? How can you make practical, sustainable changes? Remember, this is a lifelong practice. It’s a journey. It’s not about trying to eliminate stress from your life, entirely. Instead, it’s about building resilience by taking conscious, nourishing actions. It’s also about learning how to be truly kind to yourself in an otherwise chaotic, stressed-out world.
This article is for informational purposes only. It is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment and we recommend that you always consult with your healthcare provider.