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Three Dozen Ways to Reduce Stress

A great way to reduce stressIn the sixties there was a popular song titled “Love is all Around us”. These days it seems like “Stress is all around us”. City noises, traffic, work demands, family tensions, the News…it never seems to go away. Following are 3 dozen plus ways that can help you reduce stress significantly; don’t ignore them.

  • Use deep breathing exercises.
  • Make an appointment for a deep muscle massage.
  • Tense up all parts of your body one at a time and let go and relax.
  • Exercise with a brisk walk, hike, swim, bicycle, go to a gym or buy or rent your own equipment.
  • Use self-hypnosis. Lie down and relax your body step by step. Remember a peaceful place in detail, using all your senses. Really be there in your imagination.
  • Meditate: sit quietly, eyes closed. Slowly focus over and over on one word such as “calm”, or “peace”, or “relax”.
  • Talk to a friend, counselor, minister, or physician.
  • Follow your physician’s advice! 


Change your diet: less salt, less sugar, less alcohol, less fat, less meat, less coffee; more fluids, fruits, vegetables, whole grain cereals, and fish. Enjoy a balanced meal plan for proper nutrition.
  • Listen to relaxing nature sound recordings, New Age or Classical music which induces slower, deeper breathing.
  • Drive to a peaceful park, forest, beach, mountain or meadow.
  • Take the day off or go on vacation.
  • Phone your local hospital to find out when the next stress reduction class will be held.
  • Start a new hobby such as painting, playing an instrument, ceramics, sailing, tennis, yoga, etc.
  • Be assertive, not aggressive. Take a self-assertion course at a school or university.
  • Have a warm bath at 92 degrees F. with pleasant bath oil.
  • Drink chamomile tea.
  • See a foot reflexologist for better circulation.
  • Listen to a comedy recording; watch a live comedy show or video.
  • Stretch.
  • Volunteer to help others for diversion; new activities; new friends. What will you have given during your lifetime?
  • Change your daily routine, dress, route to work, furniture arrangement, etc.
  • Set up a regular time to relax, a “relaxation break” instead of a coffee break.
  • Change your attitude. Why does the same event bother some people, but not others?
  • You don’t always have to be right. You have a choice.
  • Avoid over-scheduling yourself for too many tasks.
  • Avoid “keeping up with the Joneses”.
  • Make a daily “to do” list to tackle items in order of priority.
  • Don’t spend $100 worth of energy for a 10-cent problem.
  • Break down a major task into several small tasks.
  • Delegate work to others.
  • Set realistic goals.
  • Give compliments and enjoy taking compliments.
  • Never say, “I can’t do this or that”. You get what you think about.
  • Make a list of tension reducers and things to do “to get outside of yourself”.
  • Make your personal and family life a priority over other demands.
  • Balance work with play, proper diet, sleep, exercise and relaxation.
  • Be thankful for your comfortable bed, friends, food, water, a chance to work, freedom, and many other blessings!
  • Learn to make your mind quiet through concentration exercises and meditation
  • Think positive. If you find yourself thinking negatively, immediately switch to thinking positively. Be in control of what enters your mind. Open the door for the positive and close it for the negative.

Nancy Shores LMT

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