We've all got it. Whether we're gearing up for the family holidays, planning a big event or just feeling buried under the day-to-day pressures, stress affects all of us. But stress is more than just aggravation - it's a physiological response and it can have serious medical implications when experienced over an extended period of time.
Of course, everyone has their own coping mechanisms, and it's always interesting to hear how others deal with life's pressures. But sometimes it's best to check in with the experts for some real advice on managing our stress levels.
That's why we've put together a slideshow of recommendations from the likes of Dr. Oz, Deepak Chopra, Arianna Huffington and other guests from Mondays With Marlo to get you thinking about how to reduce your everyday stress. You'll find tips on breathing exercises, meditation, event planning and even how to survive those family get-togethers over the holidays.
So... relax, breathe and click.
<strong> Remain Calm and Centered</strong> In the face of stress, it is very important to remain calm. Just remember to take it easy and remember that nothing is permanent. When you do feel stress, just take a few deep breaths and don't react. And, after a few moments, when you finally do respond, smile. (After all, breathing is the interface between our spirit and our body) <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/05/deepak-chopra-tips-for-remaining-calm-and-centered_n_1651721.html">Watch</a>
<strong>Control Your Stress By Caring For Yourself</strong> Sometimes the best thing you can do to truly relieve stress is to simply run away from home. Check out and recommit to yourself. Tell your family you love them, but you need a brief getaway. They'll be fine. It is not selfish, it's self-preservation. No one will care for you like you can care for yourself. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/18/watch-tips-for-dealing-wi_n_1607439.html">Watch</a>
<strong>Sleep Well, Live Well</strong> Getting the proper amount of sleep completely changes your attitude. It will make you less reactive, less judgmental, more productive, creative and joyful. So shoot for eight hours a night and don't be afraid to grab a quick nap if you can. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/01/arianna-huffington-shares_n_915502.html?1350410903">Watch</a>
<strong>Slow Down Your Biological Clock</strong> We metabolize time just as we metabolize food. So if you are constantly telling yourself you are running out of time, that perception of time running out speeds up your biological clock, resulting in a faster heart rate, jittery plateletes, higher blood pressure and increased adrenaline levels. People who are always running out of time usually have a heart attack and run out of time. Remain in the present and your biological clock will slow down. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/23/deepak-chopras-keys-to-an_n_882929.html?1350410173">Watch</a>
<strong>Take Control of Holiday Anxiety </strong> Anticipating and expecting things to go badly can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Beware of your own assumptions, and rather than replaying those dreaded tapes in your head, imagine yourself taking control of a negative situation by responding in a very positive way. By doing so, you will trump the negativity and you will not be allowing others to dictate how you feel and react. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/06/avoiding-holiday-anxiety-_n_960943.html?1346874551">Watch</a>
<strong>Do Belly Breathing in the Bathroom</strong> Take 5 minutes to go into the bathroom, close the toilet lid and sit down. Take a deep breath in, push your belly out, exhale and suck your bellybutton back to the spine. This deep breathing technique is central to many mystic religions is profoundly important to our spiritual balance. So just breathe and think about gratitude for 5 minutes for a quick restoration. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/10/mondays-with-marlo-stress-relieving-tip_n_1764758.html?1344876859">Watch</a>
<strong>Prepare to Ride the Wave</strong> Stress is not in the environment, it is in how you handle yourself in a given situation. If you are prepared, you can ride the waves like an expert surfer. If not, every wave is a disaster. Prepare by ensuring you have laughter, exercise, sleep, meditation, imagination, visualization, massage and sex in your life. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/02/watch-deepak-chopras-tips-for-relieving-stress_n_1644135.html?1341528635">Watch</a>
<strong>Connect To The Divine</strong> Though drink and drugs can be tempting in the face of stress, they never really improve matters. Ultimately, connecting to something higher than oneself through yoga, meditation or prayer provides perspective and security. And always remember that like the seasons, our moods and realities will always change. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/07/how-to-deal-with-the-bad-_n_1261185.html">Watch</a>
<strong>Start Meditating</strong> If you've never tried meditation before, you can begin by simply sitting quietly for about ten minutes, with your eyes closed and with no agenda. After a few days, start focusing on your breath during those ten to twenty minutes. Then add questions you want to reflect on, and observe either the sensations in your body or your breath. And lastly you can start to repeat a mantra such as "I am" or "Om." <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/05/deepak-chopras-tips-to-start-meditating_n_1651954.html?1341527834">Watch</a>
<strong>Plan a Stress-Free Wedding</strong> When it comes to weddings or any other big event, there is one sure-fire way to stress yourself out, and that is to strive for perfection. Let it go. Don't go for perfection because it is unachievable. Just let your plans play out as they will and go for a welcoming, fun atmosphere. It will make everyone more relaxed, happy and stress-free. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/20/watch-tips-for-a-stress-f_n_1441415.html?1336665040">Watch</a>
<strong>Avoid Hostility</strong> The stress of extended hostility - as opposed to regular anger, which comes and goes - can actually pose a health risk as dangerous as smoking when it comes to strokes. So look deeper into the issues behind the hostility, and you will feel a lot less stress. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/23/deepak-chopra-hostility-k_n_883045.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>How Do You De-Stress?</strong> See what everyday people on the streets of New York do to handle stress in their lives.<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/26/i-have-to-ask-how-do-you-_n_981708.html?1350411263">Watch</a>
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