07/01/2018 | News release | Distributed by Public on 07/01/2018 16:06
Feeling overwhelmed by the challenges in your life? You aren't alone. In a 2012 survey, 20% of Americans reported feeling extreme levels of stress. Before a job interview, or in sports, that 'fight or flight' impulse, created by extreme stress, can keep you on your toes. A little bit of stress from time to time can actually be a good thing. That said, when those stress hormones that originally helped us outrun a saber tooth tiger are being produced constantly, you can feel like you're constantly in overdrive.
At first, stress might manifest itself as memory loss, decreased spatial abilities and increased aggression. In other words, have you forgotten someone's birthday, or to stop at the grocery store? Got distracted while driving? Finding your co-workers more annoying than usual? These can be warning signs of chronic stress. The more serious long-term problems can be a bit trickier to spot right away, such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease or insomnia.
A little self-care before problems get out of hand can make a big difference. Feeling like you've got no time for 'me time'? Remember what they say on an airplane, and 'put your own oxygen mask on first before helping others.'
Here are a few simple ways you can reduce your stress levels, in 10 minutes or less:
Take some time out to learn how to breathe properly. Find a quiet spot and enhale by slowly taking in some deep breathes, hold for 30 seconds and then slowly exhale. Deep breathing relaxes muscles and reduces tension.