One of the biggest de-motivators and productivity killers in the world is stress. Believe me, I’ve been there personally – more than once. Handling multiple businesses and partnerships exclusively online over the last half-decade has taken a toll on my mind and body. It really wasn’t until 2010 when I hit rock bottom and actually started seeking the opinions of experts and even a psychologist. I figured if I did this, there might be some “cure-all” magic pill but really you don’t need to spend a bunch of money to become stress free. Matter of fact, I’ve been able to contain my stress until I am ready to release it in a way that is actually relaxing and at times fun.
Even if you haven’t escaped that cubicle just yet, you’re still an Entrepreneur at heart right? Well, that’s good enough for me to share with you a quick process I used to knock the snot out of stress in the office, at home and in life general.
So print it out, it’s simple but easily forgettable when you have a lot on your plate.
1. Burst of Physical Activity – I average 3-5 miles a day (depending on how I feel) in between reading emails, blogs and adding contacts to my social profiles. On the treadmill, at a 4.0-4.2 pace I get in a mile of walking in less than 15 minutes. This is also a HUGE reason that I can consistently put in 16 hour work days and reach a deep REM (Rapid Eye Movement) of sleep. This allows me to sleep just 6-7 hours a night but still obtain optimal sleep levels. I weight lift 5 days a week on top of my normal office exercising.
2. Long Burst Of Physical Activity – What just 1 hour a day can do for you! As I said above, I weight lift 5 days a week. Strengthening and growing my muscles has left me much more clear headed, I can focus more clearly and best of all – it raises my dopamine levels and, increases my stamina and releases endorphins throughout my body.
3. Don’t Work Through Lunch – Don’t do this. Eat your food slow, enjoy it and don’t let distractions keep you from enjoying your “LUNCH BREAK.” Personally, when I used to work through lunch (by eating at the desk) my productivity would go down the rest of the afternoon and I would become irritable.
4. Stay Positive No Matter What – this is an easy 3 step process I use EVERYDAY:
- I do neck and shoulder rolls (exercises) while sitting – Great stress preventer
- Every 2 hours – I hit the treadmill -A typical number of walking steps per mile is between 2,000 and 2,500 steps.
- Each hour – I get up and stretch, shake out my arms and legs
5. Use Deep Breathing – This is really easy but completely over-looked by a lot of Entrepreneurs. You can utilize deep breathing techniques to release stress by inhaling deeply from the bottom of your stomach on a slow count of ten and exhaling on a slow count of ten. This has helped me tremendously reduce my panic reactions and helped me think more calmly and logically.
6. Meditation Is Awesome – I felt stupid the first time I did this but as the days went by, I’ll never NOT do this EVERYDAY. Here are three rapid relaxation techniques to use daily:
- Find 10 minutes a day when you won’t be interrupted
- Sit in a chair with your eyes closed and put your mind in your favorite holiday or vacation place. Be sure to take in all the details like sights, sounds, colors, textures, etc.
- Then in the next 5 minutes concentrate on alternately tensing, then relaxing, every muscle group in your body starting from your face and neck and working down to your toes.
There you have it. It may differ for everyone but this is a general outline of the stress reduction techniques I use daily to keep a clear head, full focus and overall healthy state of being.