The long weekend is upon us, and it's the perfect opportunity to de-stress and recenter yourself before beginning the next month. Here are some of our favorite ways to relax and de-stress:
Just about any short walk can increase endorphins, lowering the stress hormone cortisol in the body. For an added benefit, try taking a walk in a green area. Studies have found that walking in nature can actually create a zen-like meditation state.
Long, uninterrupted computer use has been linked to stress, poor sleep and depression in women. A recent study in Britain has found a link between raising levels of stress and constantly checking our smart phones. It's no surprise that staying connected and staring at screens is associated with stress, so try turning off your phone and closing your computer for one hour this weekend.
This is pretty self-explanatory. It's hard to be stressed when you're having a hearty laugh. Laughing forces you to feel better. We all have different things that make us laugh, maybe it's your BFF, or a viral cat video.
Kissing, like exercise, causes your brain to release endorphins and in turn reduces stress. An added benefit, that may reduce your stress, kissing helps to create intimacy in relationships. In fact, a study conducted at Northwestern University found that of 2,000 couples those that only kissed during sex were much more likely to express chronic stress or depression.
Meditation allows you to be calm and still, things that are hard to find in this stressful, hectic world. The age old practice of inward focus and deep breathing has been linked with lowered risk of heart disease and lower blood pressure.
The benefits of meditation can also be found in yoga! Try a class or practice a short meditation this weekend.
The link between the gut and brain is a popular thing to study in recent years. As the gut is the largest organ in the immune system and stress is an immune response in the body, it makes sense that keeping your gut happy will keep your immune system (and its responses) happy as well. To keep our gut nourished, mindfully eating a healthy snack such as a handful of nuts, half an avocado or a banana can do the trick.
Sleep is essential to our bodies. Quality sleep helps to keep our minds and bodies strong and healthy and able to react and deal with stress appropriately.
If you're not getting restful, restorative sleep, explore why this weekend. It could be that there's too much noise or you're in need of a new fan. Fixing sleeping conditions can be an easy way to ensure that you get the quality sleep you need.
We know houseplants can be great for purifying your air and bringing in some nature, but research has shown that plants are able to relieve stress. One study out of Washington State University found that a group of stressed-out individuals had, on average, a 4-point decrease in blood pressure when they entered a room filled with plants, as compared to a control group without plants that only experienced a 2-point decrease.
The Naam yoga hand trick is an instant stress reliever, says author Sharon Melnick. Apply pressure between your second and third knuckles at the joint of the base between your two fingers. According to Melnick, author of Success Under Stress, "it activates a nerve that loosens the area around the heart, so any of that fluttery feeling you feel when you're nervous will end up going away."
Leafy greens, berries, and carrots have all been shown to act as stress relievers when consumed. Luckily, Living Juice has organic, cold-pressed juices packed full with these natural stress-relieving powers and can deliver right to your door. Order some juices, try some of the tips above and have a relaxing weekend!