Daniel Plan 3/9/17: How to Deal with Stress

Welcome back! 

Yesterday was a long discussion, so I plan on keeping it shorter today. 

I hope you find the whole physiology of sleep as interesting as I do. It helps us to make some better choices about bedtime and stress management. As such, today I want to talk about stress management

Chronic stress can attack you at any stage of life. When chronic stress hits you or someone in your circle, everyone suffers. You’ve heard of the trickle-down economy theory; there’s also a trickle-down stress theory. When the boss is stressed out, everyone at work is stressed out. When your spouse is stressed out, everyone in the family is stressed out. Stop the trickle-down effect and calm stress.
— The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life

Here are a few strategies to calm some of that stress.

For starters, pray on a regular basis

Decades of research have shown that prayer calms stress and improves brain function...The benefits of prayer go far beyond stress relief. Studies have shown that it also improves attention and planning, reduces depression and anxiety, decreases sleepiness, and protects the brain from cognitive decline associated with normal aging.
— The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life

Most important, prayer allows us to grow in relationship to God.

God wants us to think deeply on His goodness and loveliness This is Biblical meditation. The Bible says “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength” (Isaiah 30:15) You need to regularly, repeatedly put aside time to quiet yourself and refocus your thoughts on the greatness and power of God.
— The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life

The second stress management technique is prioritization.

Forget about the past, and while you're at it don't focus on the future so much. Figure out what needs to be done today and work on that. We spend such an inordinate amount of time rehashing the past and worrying about the future that we ignore the only thing that is really in our control, the present. If we would spend more time being present, we would find more joy and less stress. Put first things first and do not dwell so much on distractions.

The third strategy is to listen to music.

In particular, listen to uplifting music that reminds you of God's truth and calms your mind.

Last, but not least, consider calming supplements.

There are several that can help calm the neural pathways in your brain including the following: B-vitamins, L-theanine (found in green tea) and GABA, which has a calming effect on anxiety.

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
— 1 Peter 5:7