Stress Busting Tips

13th May 2022

With more people working from home or trying to play ‘catch up’ on their business following the pandemic, many of us feel more stressed-out than ever before. We struggle to juggle having a work/life balance. That’s not to mention the rise in screen time, online working, and the uncertainties around health.

Flexible working can sometimes feel like you’re working 24/7 (who can relate?). Did you know that 70% of doctor visits are to do with stress-related issues? Stress can negatively impact our mental and physical health. But please don’t get stressed about being stressed… The good news is that when a good diet, lifestyle and exercise plan is maintained, we can reduce our stress levels and it can help to improve our mood and mental health. But most of all taking time out to recharge is vital.

We share some of the facts about stress but also the solutions when it comes to developing simple stress-busting ideas.

What is stress?

Stress is the mind and body’s reaction to uncertain events and challenges. A rise in cortisol aka ‘the stress hormone’ and adrenaline triggers our ‘fight or flight’ response which originally would be used to stave off perceived threats such as ‘tigers.’ But now it is metaphorical tigers such as work, conflict, poverty or wealth and unemployment to name but a few triggers. How someone deals with stress is individual to them. “Stress can be defined as the degree to which you feel overwhelmed or unable to cope as a result of pressures that are unmanageable,” explains Mental Health Foundation.

There are two types of stress ‘positive’ and ‘negative’:

Useful
Sometimes stress can be a good thing when it comes to performance adrenaline and motivation to achieve our goals, but how we manage our stress level is paramount to our overall mental and physical well being. Stress helps to boost our productivity and our performance levels with small doses of adrenaline and cortisol. It can also make something enjoyable such as watching our favourite sports team play. In a physical sense it can strengthen our immune system, focus us and/or make us alert to danger as well as boosting our memory.

Harmful
Stress, however, has harmful side effects especially when experienced continuously or regularly and then it can actually play havoc with our immune systems, causing a range of illnesses such as depression, anxiety and even heart disease (When we produce too much epinephrine this can be damaging to our heart). 70% of visits to the GP are thought to be stress-related issues. These can range from reduced periods and menstrual cycles for women to sleep disturbance and a lack of libido. These physical causes are triggered by our lack of mental capacity, when being able to deal with stressful situations or what feels stressful to us.

Stress busting tips

Work, relationships and body image are cited to be causes of stress, but how do you manage it when you have so much to do on a daily basis?

  • Regular but realistic challenges are great for your mind, body and business, it helps make us feel stronger. We cannot control certain events but what we can do is get the building blocks in place to best sustain and keep our mind and body as well as possible.
  • Exercise regularly from walking each day to lifting weights three times a week. Gentle exercise works wonders and is a great way to kickstart your fitness regime.
  • Take time out of work to recharge your mental energy and gain perspective. It has been estimated that Presenteeism’s impact on productivity is 12 times higher than Absenteeism. This is where we are physically present at work but not mentally productive.
  • Reduce screen time and swap the ‘scroll hole’ of social media with some deep breathing.
  • Try to get enough sleep. Exercise and lifting weights can really help us feel sleepier.
  • Create a wellbeing plan around your business plan. Rather than just scheduling work meetings and commitments, plan regular breaks including self-care time and time with loved ones.

“I get my best ideas when I am working out,” explains Cedar Court ambassador and gym regular Sophie Mei Lan (https://mamamei.co.uk).
Sophie who also runs the Women’s World of Wellbeing group, follows the NHS’ Five Ways to wellbeing approach to managing our mental health and stress levels:

  • Get Active
  • Take Notice
  • Give
  • Connect
  • Learn

“This is a great way to think about creating our wellbeing plan and what it should include,” explains Sophie.

Allowing, Mind time (mindfulness) practices will help you develop three key capacities, collectively referred to as ‘AIM.’ These fundamental building blocks of mindfulness, as we see it, are:

  • Allowing – an attitude of kindness and acceptance
  • Inquiry – a curiosity about your present-moment experience
  • Meta-awareness – the ability to observe your thoughts, feelings, sensations and impulses as they are happening

People who can AIM respond more and react less: When we learn to AIM we become better able to regulate and manage our own emotions.
We can focus more readily. We become more adaptable, better able to change as things around shift and change. We empathise with others more fully.

Begin by giving yourself 10 minutes of Mind Time every day – mindfulness to be able to boost your brain power, build resilience and transform your relationships, work and life. Take some time out today with a simple hassle-free membership with FITFLEX GYMS and LEISURE CLUB , follow Instagram account @cedarcourtfitness for updates and offers.

 

BOOK a free trial* today with Michael via michael.hegarty@cedarcourthotels.co.uk
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