Tips to Reduce Stress in the New Year
Entering a new year is an opportune time to pause, reflect on the past year, and set intentions for the year ahead. During this time of new beginnings, it’s important to set a foundation for your goals to flourish. It’s also a key moment to consider the tools you have to help support a positive mindset and minimal stress levels in the year to come. Here are some effective ways to help you relieve stress in the New Year.
Weekly physical activity, like brisk walking, can help relieve stress and the effects it has on your mental and physical health. According to the current Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, adults need 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity and two days of muscle-strengthening activity each week. Physical activity is anything that gets your body moving and has a myriad of benefits, like improving your mood, keeping you calm, boosting energy and stamina, lowering your blood pressure, and improving your quality of sleep. Get moving!our mental health will thank you.
Implement Healthy Eating Habits
Incorporating healthy eating habits into your daily routine is an essential foundation to support your overall well-being. It’s important to eat a balanced diet to ensure your body receives the key nutrients it needs for optimal health. Astera offers a Dial-a-Dietitian program, in collaboration with Abbott, which features free nutrition support for patients. Call (800)-858-8386, extension 506, to connect with dedicated dietitians for personalized guidance on managing symptoms, weight, and overall well-being through proper nutrition.
Practicing yoga helps with stress management, encourages relaxation of the mind and body, slows the breath, and supports a focus on the present moment. This shifts the balance from the sympathetic nervous system (flight-or-fight response) to the parasympathetic (rest-and-digest responses), which helps reduce stress.
Check In with Yourself
It’s important to slow down and make time and space for yourself by tuning into how your body and mind are feeling. This is an opportune time to journal about any thoughts that might arise, which can be a beneficial and stress-relieving outlet. During a journaling session, you might have questions about your health or treatment journey. Be sure to write these down so you can ask your doctor during your next appointment, or visit your CareSpace Portal to communicate with your team and receive answers to any questions you might have in no time.
Talk to a Therapist
Life’s stressors can be overwhelming and take a toll on your mental and physical health, especially for those who are navigating a cancer diagnosis. Speaking with a therapist is a great outlet for externalizing and processing stressful thoughts and feelings. Astera is committed to helping patients navigate and cope with the heavy emotions of a cancer diagnosis and provides resources to empower them through its Social Work program.
Prioritize Your Sleep
Good sleep is essential to good health, and getting adequate rest can help reduce your stress levels.
Nature has an innate power to heal. Evidence reveals an association between nature exposure and improved cognitive function, brain activity, blood pressure, mental health, physical activity, and sleep. Find a way to incorporate spending time in nature into your weekly routine. Whether it’s going for a walk or hike outside, sitting on a park bench, kayaking, or standing on the beach and listening to the waves crash against the sand, get yourself out into nature to help relieve stress.
Meditation is a beneficial tool to help you feel more calm and at peace. There are a variety of ways to meditate. Some meditations to explore are Mindfulness Meditation, Guided Imagery Meditation, Body Scan Meditation, Mantra Meditation, and Transcendental Meditation. Try practicing a few to find what resonates best for you.
Find a Creative Outlet
Find a creative outlet that cultivates calmness and joy. Whether it’s drawing, painting, writing, playing an instrument, cooking, you name it. Find a creative and fun mindfulness regimen that helps you relieve stress.