This is Part 2 of a two-part series. If you missed Part 1 you can find that here How to Lower Your Cortisol Levels Naturally Part 1 (wellnowfitness.com)
LIFESTYLE HABITS THAT CAN HELP (CONTINUED)
6. Maintain Healthy Relationships
Relationships with friends and family can lead to happiness and to stress. So spend time with those you love and learn to forgive and manage conflict for better emotional and physical health.
7. Take Care of a Pet
Several studies show that interacting with an animal companion reduces stress and lowers cortisol levels. Even if you do not own a pet, interacting with another person's pet can offer similar benefits.
In the last picture you see a working buddy provides a little relaxtion during an arduous task of deck scraping!
8. Be Your Best Self
Feelings of shame, guilt, or inadequacy can lead to negative thinking and elevated cortisol levels. So participate in learning activities that will help you be your best version of you. Learn to switch the channel of negative self-talk to positive self-talk. I once heard this quote which states it clearly, "Don't listen to yourself, talk to yourself." Flip the switch!!
Tips for cultivating a postive mindset:
Acknowledge and embrace imperfection: No one is perfect, and imperfection is an opportunity to learn and grow. Instead of hiding or avoiding your flaws, accept them and work on them.
Face your challenges bravely: Challenges are inevitable and often uncomfortable, but they are also the best way to stretch your abilities and develop new skills. Don’t let fear of failure stop you from trying new things.
Pay attention to your words and thoughts: Your self-talk can have a powerful impact on your mindset. Avoid using fixed mindset language, such as “I can’t”, “I’m not good at”, or “I’ll never”. Replace them with growth mindset phrases, such as “I can learn”, “I can improve”, or “I’ll keep trying”.
Stop seeking approval from others: Your own growth and happiness are more important than pleasing others. Don’t let external validation or criticism define your self-worth. Focus on your own goals and values, and celebrate your progress.
Learn from others who have a growth mindset: Find role models who demonstrate a growth mindset in their actions and words. Observe how they handle challenges, setbacks, and feedback. Ask them for advice or mentorship. Learn from their successes and failures.
9. Nourish Your Spirit
Developing your faith can also help improve cortisol levels. Studies show that adults who expressed spiritual faith expereinced lower cortisol levels in the face of life stressors such as illness. (Religion, Spirituality, and Health: The Research and Clinical Implications - PMC (nih.gov))
You can cultivate your faith by:
Listening to uplifting music which can help you feel more positive and hopeful. It can also help you connect with your emotions and express your feelings .
Reading and studying the Bible which can help you deepen your understanding of God’s love and wisdom. It can also help you find answers to life’s questions and challenges.
10. Nourish with Nutriton
All foods can be enjoyed in moderation but be sure to eat the types of food that can help alleviate symptoms of stress and help you better manage your cortisol level.
These foods include:
Legumes and lentils
Whole fruits and vegetables
Healthy fats - especially Omega-3
11. Supplements Might be Helpful
Fish oil is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are thought to reduce cortisol. You can get some omega-3 in your diet from fish, but you can also opt to increase your consumption with a fish oil supplement. My favorite brand for this supplement is OMEGA-3 Lime. It tastes like lime rather than fish. Gotta love that. It can be purchased through Melaleuca. (Search (melaleuca.com))
Ashwaganda is a herb widely used in traditional medicine to treat anxiety and help people adapt to stress. If you are interested in using ashwagandha be sure to speak to a healthcare professional first!!
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