Stress is the basic cause of 60% of all human illness and disease. It increases your risk of heart disease by 60%, stroke by 50% and heart attack by 25%. (The American Institute of Stress)
It eats away at our happiness, puts us in constant fight or flight mode, has bad effects on the heart, blood pressure, and our mental health. Stress is a big cause of early deaths, strokes and heart disease.
44% of us lose sleep every night over stress.
40% of stressed people overeat or eat unhealthy foods… which adds it’s own extra layer of problems.
Stress is a problem I have personally battled with since I started my own business. From growing Inspire Fitness from a couple of classes in Leisureland, to now running an established business that supports six employees, it can be difficult sometimes, to sleep at night.
Throw on top of that a two year old and a one year old, and I wholeheartedly understand how difficult life can be.
For me it was either sink or swim. So I decided to swim. I have daily habits in my life that help me stay relaxed and focused, help me continue to workout and stay in shape, and sleep well at night.
I’d like to share these daily habits with you. I’d love your feedback on them or if you have anything to add to the list, please do let me know.
For some of you that know me by now, you will know that I’m constantly talking about interval training, but I can’t help it.
It’s amazing. Interval training will get you in the best shape of your life. It boosts your metabolism, keeps you lean and toned, and turns you into a calorie burning machine, while at rest.
Not only that BUT… it rapidly increases your feel good hormones, much more so than most other forms of exercise, meaning it’s a great stress buster.
It is the best type of exercise for weight loss, and can be done at any age, and any fitness level. It is the best combat for stress I know, and I guarantee you, if you do interval training 3-4 times per week, you will feel like you can tackle any problem, no matter how big.
Eat Clean 5 days per week.
Forget calorie counting, weighing scales, measuring, my fitness pal. If you ate clean 5 days per week, your mood and your reaction to obstacles put in front of you, would change.
You’ll be more calm and better able to cope with what life throws at you. You are far better off to eat clean 5 day per week and enjoy the weekends, then to count and measure your way through life, 7 days per week, 365 days of the year.
Eating cleaning promotes feel good hormones, puts you in a better frame of mind, and keeps you sharp, focused and better able to cope. Turning to food to help with stress, is a losers game, only leading to deep unhappiness.
Mapping out your weeks and days, in advance has been one of my biggest breakthrough for combatting stressed and getting more relaxed.
I plan my week in advance, on a Sunday.
I know the days I’ll be working out, or meeting friends, or at meetings, or picking up the kids.
I HATE things thrown into my week that I haven’t planned for. I’m super organised and it’s the only way that helps me cope with such demands from my job.
So many people rely on me, and I have so many things to do, that it’s so important I map out my week. If I don’t, the very first few things that get dropped are the things that directly affect me. I don’t get to workout, I don’t get to eat as healthy as I wanted to, I get no down time or I stop reading my books…. So it’s crucial I plan and prepare every moment of the day. If you do this, you will combat stress. ASANA is a great online tool for mapping out your week and days ahead.
Read Personal development books
No time? Listen to them in the car. But get your hands on them. Listening and reading about successful people, who manage to live great lives, while running multimillion pound companies or taking care of 5 kids while working, or studying for exams while working full time, will help you build up a list of tried and tested strategies that work for you.
It can be extremely relaxing listening to Bill Gates or Brian Tracy, talk about how they deal with stress in their daily lives, as it reminds you that we are all human, and it effects everyone. AND, that the only difference between you and them, is their daily habits.
Stress is real and I understand how awful it is. If you can take one thing from today, understand that it is through changing our daily habits, that we change our lives. Step by step, day by day.