Top 5 Stress Relievers: The Best Ways To Feel Better

Written By Kaisa Kokkonen Published March 20th, 2010

There are numerous ways to reduce tension and relax you can read about online or in books. Here are the 5 stress relievers I believe are most effective for the amount of work, money and time involved. Some take more practice, but there’s something here for everyone. Some can be learned in the time it takes to read this page.

Step 1. Exercise
Most people probably exercise to control weight and get in better shape, to become more healthy or physically attractive, but exercise and stress management are also closely linked. Exercise gives you a lift via endorphins – just like falling in love. It also provides a distraction from stressful situations, as well as an outlet for frustrations. I grew up in the middle of Finnish countryside and I think most Finns still are happiest while outdoors walking, running, skiing or picking up berries in the woods. The one thing missing in America is a great sauna which most Finns have – nothing better for relaxing. Most people can squeeze in 30-45 min of walking

Step 2. Sex
Most adults know that sex is a great tension reliever, but have you ever thought of it as a stress-relieving practice? We all should. The physical benefits of sex are numerous, and most of them work very well toward relieving stress. It is ironic that most of us have less sex when our stress levels are high. Don’t fall for that!

Step 3. Music
It is not discussed a lot in public but music therapy has shown numerous health benefits for people with conditions ranging from mild (stress) to severe (like heart condition). The right music can lower your blood pressure, relax your body and calm your mind. Since I grew up on a farm, I can tell you that my father used to play classical music to the cows 40 years ago. We had very happy cows even if they never went to California.

Step 4. Meditation
Meditation builds on deep breathing, and takes it a step further. Your brain enters an area of functioning that’s similar to sleep when you meditate, but carries some added benefits you can’t achieve as well in any other state (including the release of certain hormones that promote health). The mental focus on “nothingness” keeps your mind from working overtime and increasing your stress level. I am personally not really into meditation but I know it can help some super active minds and hyper personalities to calm down immensely.

Step 5. Yoga
Yoga dates back over 5 thousand years and is one of the oldest self-improvement practices around. Yoga is a combination of the practices of several other stress management techniques such as meditation, breathing, imagery and movement, giving you a lot of benefit for the amount of time and energy required. If you plan to do yoga, be sure to check your instructor actually knows what they are doing. A lof of hype and incompetency in that area which is unfortunate.

There are plenty of other ways but I only listed the ones I either believe myself or have seen over the years many people to choose.

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