sunset meditation

I’m sure you’ve read all the studies too… managing stress is just as, if not more important than, the food we eat. Of course processed junk foods, refined sugars and caffeine can be stress on the body as well, but today I’m talking about emotional stress.

When I lead group cleanses, I talk a lot about stress and suggest self-care practices to manage it. Because stress is toxic to the body! If we want to detoxify, improve digestion, feel good and enjoy better health, we’ve got to learn deal with the stress that comes at us from every direction.

I’m by no means an expert on this yet.

But I think I’m on to something, and I have to share the remarkable shift I saw in myself.

Tuesday night my computer died. I had a lot of work to get done for Wednesday. I ended up canceling a meeting on Wednesday, skipping another one, and canceling a webinar so I could go buy a new laptop.

Two years ago, maybe even a year ago, I would’ve flipped out over the stress of my ridiculous to-do list, when, not only did I not have a working computer to do my job, but I didn’t have the files that make up my business.

My reaction was of course a little stress, but honestly, I just kind of went with it. I still went to my gym class on Wednesday morning because I knew I would feel better getting my workout in. I got some recommendations on what to buy and moved forward.

I will get my files back. I have faith it will all work out.

Who is this Zen Angie?!? Really, I don’t recognize her. What’s changed?

Here are the three things I’ve added to my life over the last couple years that I have to believe have changed me. I’m different without trying to be, or even noticing the impact these habits have had on me:

  1. Meditation For me this usually looks like prayer. I also do the ‘clearing the mind’ meditation as often as I can, but I’m certainly not consistent yet. Every little bit counts, so don’t throw in the towel on your practice if you struggle with consistency.
  2. Gratitude Journaling I talk about this one a lot with clients and friends because it’s had such a profound effect on me. For the past year+, I have written 3 things I’m grateful for in my journal every night. Big or small, reflecting on how very blessed I am changes my perspective.
  3. Essential Oils I believed in them, and I wanted so badly for them to work like magic because, well, they smell amazing:). Well, maybe they’re not magic, but they certainly work. Since I’ve made essential oils a part of my everyday wellness practice, I’ve seen dramatic results.

de-stress essential oils

Exercise and eating well have been a part of my life for years, but bringing these 3 habits into my daily life has made quite the impact.

What do you find most effective for managing stress?