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Stress Reduction Techniques

Stress Reduction


Stress is a normal part of everyday life and is a natural response from our body to the environment.


In an emergency, the stress signal increases our awareness and allows us to react quickly. However, too much stress over time can cause damage to our body through excessive amounts of the stress hormone cortisol.     


Stress can affect people in different ways such as:

  • Behavioural changes including increased drinking, smoking or eating,  
  • Difficulties with concentration and forgetfulness,  
  • Emotional problems such as depression and anxiety.      


There are a number of simple and effective methods that can be used to reduce stress levels. Different strategies will work for different people. Try and see what works best for you.      



Meditation can be described as a discipline involving turning one’s attention internally and focusing on quieting the mind. There are many different types of meditation including body scanning, mental imagery and mindfulness. It can be as simple as sitting quietly for 10 minutes before bed time and focusing on your breathing.      



Yoga is a gentle form of exercise designed to strengthen both the mind and body. It often incorporates breathing techniques and meditation also. Hatha yoga is one of the most common styles practiced and can improve flexibility, balance and decrease stress in everyday life.      


Deep Breathing  

Breathing techniques encourage deep breathing from the abdomen. When we inhale deeply into our abdomen rather than shallow breaths into our chest, it allows more oxygen into our body, reducing stress levels. A good way to see if you are breathing into your abdomen is to sit upright and place one hand on your chest and the other on your abdomen, the hand on your abdomen should rise when inhaling and the hand on your chest should move very little.      


Regular Exercise

Regular exercise is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle. Exercise can include things such as walking the dog, cycling, playing team sports or going to the gym. Getting into a regular routine and making time to exercise will ensure that it becomes a habit. Try and aim for 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week.      



The content displayed on this webpage is intended for informational purposes and is a guide only. It does not replace or substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Information contained on this webpage must be discussed with an appropriate healthcare professional before making any decisions or taking any action based on the content of this webpage.  




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