People employ their own unique techniques to cope with stress- an almost inevitable part of present day life. Although stress management works better, stress reduction can also help a lot by breaking down the vicious cycle of stress and related mental and physiological responses that has gripped one’s life.

Some people use unhealthy means to cope with stress. Alcoholism, smoking, frequent use of anxiety pills, oversleeping and social seclusion may all work, but only temporarily. The body develops a chemical dependency on these inputs besides the fact that they in themselves are detrimental to health on a long run. Therefore, such methods should be avoided at best. Instead, focus on some of these techniques which may be difficult to start, but once the inertia is overcome, real results are seen almost immediately:-

Meditation: difficult to practice, but those who do swear by this method. Meditation might give some people the wrong idea because of some of the spiritual and religious connotation it carries but this is only misinformation. Meditation is of a few types but the most commonly employed and the easiest one to practice is the method which requires you to observe your own breath. The core idea behind this practice is to focus your mind’s energies and attention on one object and what is a better object than your own breath. Meditating boosts your concentration and clears up your mind. Blood pressure and hypertension are known to be effectively lowered when this is practiced. With a cool mind and relaxed body, you can think clearly and see where your problem areas lie with much better clarity.

Exercise: for a physical release of stress, muscle contractions followed by relaxation exercises are needed. Besides having a host of benefits, regular exercise keeps stress at bay. Take time off to do a few simple exercises or yoga everyday and you can benefit greatly. Vigorous exercise on the other hand, releases endorphins which counter the harmful effects of stress and relax the mind.

Hobbies: taking time off to pursue hobbies is an almost obsolete and forgotten practice these days. Doing what you enjoy the most for some time every day or on a regular basis is an amazing way to beat stress. Even simple hobbies like listening to music can help. In fact, music therapy in itself is a major means by which a lot of people tackle stress and related problems.

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More information on this subject can be found in the extensive guide to stress relief techniques and other resources on stress management web site.