Stress Hack: Stand Tall

Stand up straight.

Standing upright not only makes you feel more confident, but it actually decreases stress hormones. A recent study in the journal Health Psychology found that people who had a slouchy posture while performing high-pressure tasks reported having more negative thoughts and feelings than those who sat upright. Other studies by researcher Amy Cuddy show that standing with an upright posture increases testosterone and decreases levels of the stress hormone cortisol. This seems to cause people to feel less anxious and more assertive and confident.

Source
Advertisements

Stress Hack: #4 of 4 Strategies to Stop Panic Attacks

Visualize a Peaceful and Happy Place

What’s the most relaxing place in the world that you can think of? A sunny beach with gently rolling waves? A cabin in the mountains? Picture yourself there, and try to focus on the details as much as possible. Imagine digging your toes into the warm sand, or smelling the sharp scent of pine trees. This place should be quiet, calm, and relaxing — no streets of New York or Hong Kong, no matter how much you love the cities in real life.

Source

Sleep Hack: Hide Your Clock & Smart Phone

Don’t watch the clock. Another common anxiety that lurks in the wee-hours of a sleepless night is the mounting awareness that you’re not asleep when you should be. Stress and frustration – not typically emotions that welcome relaxation – escalate as you fret about how you need to be up for work in four (or three or two) hours. The experts’ suggestion? Get rid of time cues. “No clock watching,” Walia says, “That’s a big no-no. Turn the clock around.”

Source

Stress Hack: #3 of 4 Strategies to Stop a Panic Attack

Close Your Eyes, Reduce Stimuli, & Focus on Breathing

Some panic attacks come from triggers that overwhelm you. If you’re in a fast-paced environment with a lot of stimuli, this can feed your panic attack. To reduce the stimuli, close your eyes during your panic attack. This can block out any extra stimuli and make it easier to focus on your breathing.

Source

Stress Hack: #2 of 4 Strategies to Stop a Panic Attack

Recognize You Are Having a Panic Attack

By recognizing that you’re having a panic attack instead of a heart attack, you can remind yourself that this is temporary, it will pass, and that you’re OK. Take away the fear that you may be dying or that impending doom is looming, both symptoms of panic attacks. This can allow you to focus on other techniques to reduce your symptoms.

Source

Stress Hack: Laugh Out Loud

Find Something That Makes You Laugh

Turns out, laughter really can be the best medicine (for certain things, anyway). A 2003 study and a 2008 study found that even anticipating a laugh can decrease stress hormones. While a lot of these studies are small (and isolating variables in an experiment like this can be tricky), a good belly laugh certainly won’t make your stress worse. So consider this science’s way of telling you it’s OK to watch that stupid cat video at work or take a quick break to catch up on some clips from the previous night’s late-night TV shows.

Source

Stress Hack: Reduce Stress in 1 Minute

Describe three things you see right now

Describe three things you see around you in terms of size, shape, texture, and color. For example, the brown, rough bark of a large tree. This exercise can be done indoors or outdoors. It brings your attention back to the present moment and neutral aspects of experience. This can take you away from your worries and fears about what might happen in the future. It is also a concrete task that can help disengage the default mode network in your brain that gets activated when you’re worrying, daydreaming, or thinking about yourself. Rather, it will activate your brain’s “on-task” network that is inconsistent with rumination.

Source