Three Ways To Reduce Stress For Menopause Relief

slow down, relax and de-stress written on a napkin

Stress—we all encounter it in one way or another throughout the day. It’s a normal experience! Our amazing bodies were built to withstand it. However, they aren’t built for chronic, habitual, and prolonged stress. Our body is suited to protect us from the stress of a hungry lion or from physical danger. It is not, however, equipped to protect us from chronic stress. When we experience this – and we all admit we do – we start to experience negative physical, emotional, and mental symptoms.

Have you ever noticed that on your most hectic days you feel frustrated faster, have less patience, feel more negatively about yourself, lose words, or you just can’t remember things? I know this is what happens to me, so I am guessing that some of this might happen to you, too! So, what is it about stress that makes us feel like we’re running on empty?

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Elevated cortisol, our stress hormone, is the culprit for declining emotional and physical wellness due to stress. When our bodies perceive stress, our adrenal glands release this hormone to activate our “fight or flight” response. While normal levels of cortisol, (which are released when we exercise, help strengthen our heart, and reduce pain sensitivity), are beneficial, too much of this hormone can have negative and severe effects.

Pushing ourselves excessively–emotionally and physically–will increase our cortisol and can lead us to sugar dependence, over-reactivity, trying to push the feeling away by “numbing,” becoming injury prone, and more susceptible to serious illnesses.

Stress leads to weight gain in a number of ways. First, we tend to grab foods that don’t necessarily fuel us. Second, we tend to be less motivated for self-care activities like exercise. The worry, guilt, and shame we feel from the above behaviors will lead to increased cortisol, too. Yes, even just a negative thought increases our cortisol.

Stress resilience is a key foundational tool for my clients during menopause because it impacts the quality of their entire life. As estrogen begins to fluctuate, and then decline, our brain is confused and tired. Stress takes a major toll on our body. When we aren’t properly managing our stress during menopause, it becomes increasingly difficult to manage our appetite, move safely, and be our best selves.

Developing solid stress resilience habits will lower your cortisol levels and increase your wellness throughout menopause and beyond. Here are three strategies to reduce your cortisol, reduce your stress, and feel relief from your menopause symptoms.

1. Incorporate a deliberate breathing routine into your day.

Our breath is for life. Wherever we go, we have control over our breathing – even in the midst of stress. Even just taking a few minutes (or seconds!) to breathe deeply on your commute, or breathing when you reach a stop sign or red light is deeply beneficial to your wellness.

2. Get your sleep!

Sleep is the foundation for our health and wellness. If our brain doesn’t have the chance to recuperate from our demanding day and to build new pathways for our tomorrow, it gets stressed. We can stop the stress before it begins by committing to better sleep habits and making our night routine a top priority. Strive for at least seven hours of quality, uninterrupted sleep each night.

Adrien Cotton ales in a bed with white sheets- sleeping on her side

3. Go for an outside walk.

If our goal is to thrive during menopause, we want to make our stress resilience a top priority. Walking is a great low-impact form of exercise that can significantly reduce our stress and inflammation. Walking is a top priority for me, and it should be for you. When we engage only in intense exercise, our cortisol levels rise, and, you guessed it, our stress increases. Going on a walk is also an impactful self-care activity that allows us to work on our mindfulness and deliberate breathing. We can also focus on all of the things for which we are grateful.

If these tips resonated with you, you would gain even more incredible wellness resources from my MASTER Menopause NOW! Course. Let me teach you the proven science and strategies behind changing your daily habits and transforming your relationship with wellness and your body. There is so much to learn on your path to wellness, as every module is an essential tool and building block to feel better and to master menopause. By purchasing, you are choosing to reclaim your life and your body. This course will help you prioritize your wellness through proven methods and strategies like sleep, stress, food as fuel, exercise, and calendar management. Why wait? Feel better in your body right now!

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