Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Beat Back to School Stress

Beating Back to School Stress

                As the school year begins today for much of the Nation’s elementary and high schools, students, teachers, and parents are likely to experience an increased amount of distress across the mind-body-spirit continuum. So, I thought I would offer some easy-to-use remedies that you might consider as you begin your respective school years.

11)      Use herbal remedies to reduce stress. Chamomile is a great herb that is noted for offering a soothing effect while supporting digestion. As in other years, I started my morning this morning by heating some water in our microwave and then adding fresh chamomile from my herb garden along with natural bee honey and ginger. This is a concoction that smells, tastes great, and I like to think it is rather soothing as it quite literally warms the soul :)

22)      Maintain a regular exercise program. Although we are inundated with a multitude of priorities this time of year with the onset of school, we still need to remember physical health. One thing that I would recommend when it comes to exercising for the first couple of weeks of school is to keep a program going that you already started. It seems appropriate to avoid getting too creative or pushing yourself too hard when there are so many other potential changes that can impact stress levels negatively. If you tax yourself on this plane when so many other things are being presented, the exercise routine could actually become counter-productive. Even just 20-30 minutes per day can take us away from our very busy lives so that we have some type of reprieve while benefiting on a physical level.

33)      Contemplate contemplative arts. Meditation, Tai-chi, yoga, and qigong are just a few activities that help bring about a sense of calm within that allows us to realize interconnections of all systems intertwined which prompts an alert state that is also simultaneously relaxed. The greatest thing about these activities is that sources like YouTube offer step-by-step formats that are easy to follow and can be effective. Take advantage of free online guidance that promotes calmness within and allow yourself the retreat that you deserve.

44)      Get adequate sleep. This may seem like a no-brainer, but one thing that can help sleep which is not always considered is the heat setting in the room where you are sleeping. Generally speaking, the body naturally induces sleep much more readily when the air temperature is anywhere from 63-67 degrees. So, before you retire for the evening, turn down the thermostat. Sleep will start sooner and it is possible that you will actually feel more rested in the morning when you arise.

This is just a brief list of ideas to think about, but they ideally will help you avoid and/or defeat distress so that it does not impair your level of desired functioning as you get your respective school years underway.

Mark Maule

Health and Wellness Instructor


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