We all face stress in our lives, whether we recognize it or not. And we are not talking about those kinds of nervous breakdowns, which make you want to shave your head. We are talking about the constant flow of little things that we can’t shake off. From being irritable, lacking focus, being unable to calm down to having trouble sleeping – it creeps into our lives. Most of the time we fail to notice it because we’re to busy doing other things.

Because of infinite information we process everyday, there are more stressors around us than ever before. In the Stone Age we faced sudden dangers, which we fought off with our wooden sticks and then danced around the fire when it was over. The tension built up and we reacted to it accordingly but then when the dust settled we were able to relax. Even though times have changed, our bodies are still programmed to react in the same way when danger appears and we start to stress out.  While some stress is normal for the body, the problem appears when we fail to find a way to relax. Stressors surround us from all sides these days and usually the body tells us something is wrong on physical and mental level. We go from alarm to resistance until finally burning out, because we fail to notice the signals. We need to learn how to listen to our bodies.

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There are different stress relief techniques, but they all share the same goal, shifting focus from the pile of responsibilities and tasks. Damjan Verhovc is a specialist for psychological preparation and sport training, suggests a combination of breathing exercises, meditation and other mental techniques and physical activity..

 

a specialist for psychological preparation and sport training, suggests a combination of breathing exercises, meditation and other mental techniques and physical activity.

Getting our sweat on releases hormones inside our brain called endorphins, which greatly improve your mood. This optimistic feeling has been nicknamed “runner’s high”, but you can get it from any form of cardio activity including hiking, cycling and tennis. It is recommended to have some aerobic activity at least 3 times per week, but for best results you should train daily up to 30 minutes. The exercises shouldn’t be too intense, because that can add even more stress on the body.

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He also suggest practicing yoga, stretching, meditating before sleep and having a quick 20min naps in the afternoon if necessary.

With pitching season on the horizon, it is important to know how to calm down before going in front the investors as well. Even though the ideal place to relax would be a quiet office, where you can close your eyes and empty your mind, you can still do some exercises with people not noticing. One of them is really easy and it requires you to squeeze your muscles for 20 seconds, then release and continue to breathe slowly.

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Achieving a calm state of mind can be quite a project and changes don’t happen overnight.  But if you can recognize what causes stress, you’re already on the good way to cope with it. Sometimes even the most socially acceptable things around us can cause disruptions. Electronics are known for messing with our sleeping patterns, because of radiating blue light that tricks our brain into thinking it’s daytime. Poor nutrition can push your body into survival mode, which results in constant low energy levels. Do you recognize these triggers?  The sooner you do, the easier it will be to avoid stress and other side effects like tension headaches. So get up and get moving.

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