I want to start off by saying that everyone is different. What works for me may not necessarily work for you and vice versa. This goes along with so many different aspects in life including fitness, diets, time of day working out, amount of sleep needed, morning routines, night routines and the list goes on!
But today I want to talk about stress.
When I was struggling with anxiety about 7 months ago, I tried finding ways to help calm my stress. I tried meditation because I had a few friends recommend it. Unfortunately meditation did not work for me. At the time, I didn’t know how to control my anxious thoughts. I had just started therapy and my anxiety was all over the place. To me meditation felt intimating, because it was me alone with my thoughts. I tried yoga as well, which gave me the same feelings I felt during meditation. I quickly looked for other options.
I decided to turn to the one thing I know best which is staying active. Going to the gym or going for a run were the best ways for me to deal with my stress. After a long run or a tough workout, I felt unstoppable. I think that feeling of finishing a run or finishing my workout gave me a sense of strength. If I could push through that I could fight my stress and anxious thoughts. I continued to get really into working out as a way to help with my stress and anxiety. It was my outlet.
Fast-forward to today and my outlook on activities such as meditation and yoga are completely different. I don’t meditate often, but when I do, I feel much calmer than I did before. I don’t have those anxious or stressful thoughts running through my head. Most of the time I feel so calm I even fall asleep! (Not sure if that’s a good thing or not but I will take it as an improvement!) I also try and practice yoga every day or at least every other day. Now I enjoy it, which is great because I struggled with it 7 months ago. I find it’s my new way for me to find that feeling of strength. I’m not very flexible, but practicing yoga reminds me how strong our body and mind are and how much we are able to do.
I still workout as much as I did before, but I’m finding if I am stressed at all, I’m starting to use yoga as my outlet. I guess this shows me that I’m growing. My mind is becoming stronger and I’m learning that for me, there isn’t just one way to deal with stress. I would have never thought 7 months ago I would be practicing yoga, but I’m happy I’ve gotten to that point.
What are ways you like to handle your stress? I always love to hear new ideas!
Just a girl writing down her thoughts on life post-trauma, body acceptance and wellness.