The pace of life may feel like it’s accelerating. Professional responsibilities coupled with commitments in your personal life—from your romantic relationship to your family—may cause you to experience increased stress levels, which can be taxing mentally, emotionally, and physically.
Central to achieving better men’s health, as well as a positive outlook on life, is finding ways to release stress, so it does not go unchecked. An important starting place is to take stock of the stress triggers in your life. From there, start to create boundaries and schedule personal time to engage in the activities you enjoy. It’s important that you seek outlets that will assist you in maintaining a strong sense of control and will act as vehicles for stress relief. It’s also essential that these activities allow you to disconnect and slow down to permit your mental and physical health the ability to “reset”.
Are You Getting Enough Exercise?
Many find physical exercise a reliable and helpful solution for managing and releasing stress. Exercise is a wonderful option, as long as it’s an activity that you enjoy and do not find to be an unpleasant chore. In fact, anything you consider an unpleasant experience will be met with resistance and will not be a sustainable behavior. You might find enjoyment in working out in a gym setting or maybe you prefer to engage in outdoor activities, such as walking, running, hiking, or biking.
Throughout history, most people walked several miles a day, and yet in recent decades, we have rapidly moved to a world with limited activity. Today, most men discover that their daily exercise consists of walking a few hundred meters between their car and the office. If this is your daily experience routine, it’s critical that you set personal commitments to find time to move your physical body on a regular schedule, each week.
At EveresT Men’s Health, we regularly reinforce two aspects for supporting men’s health and wellness:
Optimal energy output (i.e. exercise)
Improved energy input (i.e. better nutrition)
Meditation and Yoga for Men
Meditation and yoga are two activities that have been trialed for thousands of years. Both activities also have a strong evidence base to support their ability to relieve stress and are better directed in a group setting—to help the beginner understand the process and the social aspect provides added benefit.
Meditation can provide much needed access for quieting the mind and adapting your stress response to triggers that may cause anxiety, frustration, or distraction, whereas yoga provides a good balance of physical exertion and mental relaxation. Yoga also encourages improved flexibility, which is increasingly important as you age—as it helps enhance vitality and prevents age-related injuries.
Relieving Stress in a Digital Age
A growing issue in today’s world is an increased dependency on personal electronic devices. Within a remarkably short-time span, most men have a handheld computer in their pocket—providing a constant stream of information and stimulation. If you’ve noticed yourself falling into a growing attachment to your electronic devices, it’s important for you to recognize this and begin establishing healthy boundaries by providing “screen-free” time for yourself.
Smart devices have a very seductive quality and often result in around-the-clock checking of your smartphone and/or texting or emailing while driving. These devices not only distract you, but they also diminish you from healthy engagement with your family and friends. Therefore, it’s important that you establish device-free breaks throughout each day. You are the only one who can direct this, and it’s essential that you do.
Some general recommendations include establishing a phone-free zone, during
Travel (i.e. driving)
After work hours (remember, you deserve time to disconnect from your professional responsibilities.)
Further, it’s also recommended that you avoid screen time immediately before bed.
This life is yours for the taking, and central to your experience of living is to seek out ways for coping with the stresses in your life and setting boundaries that better support your experiences.
To learn more tips on stress management, contact our men’s health clinic, located in Plymouth and Woodbury. From providing comprehensive men’s health evaluations to offering nutritional counseling, medical weight loss plans for men, and more, our team of experts will help you identify your stress triggers and find ways to live better and feel like your best self.