managing stress

The new trailer for the next Hunger Games movie came out! “Catching Fire”! I love these books, the first movie was great and Jennifer Lawrence is just plain hilarious. Watching her during interviews after awards ceremonies is hilarious. Anyway, here is the new trailer in case you haven’t seen it. Or in case you want to see it again:

Today Elizabeth Smart was on the local university campus speaking about her experience and what she learned from it. If you are not familiar with Elizabeth’s story, she was abducted from her bed when she was 14 years old, “married” to her captor (totally not real) and raped multiple times during her captivity. 9 months after she was taken, she was rescued. That’s the gist of it. She’s only about a year or two older than me and since she was also from the Salt Lake Valley, it was a scary thing to experience from the outside and such a happy day when she was found!


It was interesting to hear the story from her perspective and completely inspiring. She decided during her captivity that she was going to do anything in her power to stay alive. She was eventually rescued and returned to her family. The next day her mom sat her down and told her she could either choose to be happy and leave the past behind her, or live her life in fear and sadness, dwelling on her awful experience, and let her captor still have power over her. She chose happiness and has been able to overcome her experience and learn and grow from it. She expressed so much gratitude for who she is because of it and talked about turning trials into blessings. Considering everything she was put through, I am so very impressed with her. She was very inspiring and so down to earth. It was amazing to hear her speak.

I’ve loved the wellness discussions we’ve been having this week! I love all your insights! In case you need to catch up:

Factor 1: Body Image

Factor 2: Sleep

Today we have Factor 3: Stress Management

Stress is a natural part of life. There is good stress (such as the stress that motivates you to move out of the way of a moving vehicle) and bad stress (when you’re very overwhelmed by something in your life). We’re going to talk about the bad stress.

It’s important to keep your stress under control because stress has many physiological effects that can be quite damaging. These include, but are not limited to, pain, heart disease, digestive problems, sleep problems, depression, obesity, autoimmune diseases and skin conditions. (source). Not fun! Now that I’ve motivated you to want to better manage you stress, let’s get into how to do this.

Andrea: I work on stress management by using my workout time as strict ME time. I turn off my brain, leave school/work/self worries at home, and I allow myself a workout of good ol’ SWEAT!! It is amazing how sweating can literally seem to let the stress seep out of you! When I get back I am clear-headed and ready to go!

thesavedrunner: The best way for me to handle stress is to run and pray. Anytime I go to God in prayer or just read His word, God gives me such a peace. And running just seems to relax me and make me realize that everything will be just fine.

These ladies hit it right on the nose for me! Running is my #1 way I relieve stress! Exercising in general is an awesome way to relieve stress, but for me no other exercise helps me quite as well as running does. Here is a list of stress relief techniques that have worked for me:

  • Running! (as I already mentioned) I love what Andrea said about working out being “me time”. When I’m really stressed I try to not think of my stressors while I’m running. It helps me to remove myself from the situation for a time. Feels so great.
  • Getting a good night of sleep. Very important!
  • Writing it out in my journal
  • Talking it out with friends
  • Meditation. Taking a moment out of the world to just be still is so nice.
  • Go for drives. Occasionally (ok, often) involves singing in the car.
  • Focus on my breathing and taking nice, deep breaths.

I am one who is CONSTANTLY highly stressed naturally. My job is also pretty stressful at times. I have to use one or more of these techniques when necessary to stay sane. Sometimes, when worse comes to worse and it all just becomes too hard to handle any longer, sometimes the best stress relief is a good, solid cry. Works every time.

What do you do to manage your stress? Favorite stress relief technique?

Are you a Hunger Games fan? Are you so excited for “Catching Fire”?!

What do you do to stay strong through trials?

Don’t forget to comment on the last few wellness topics we’ll be going over: fitness, nutrition, spiritual and balancing it all.


17 thoughts on “managing stress

  1. Running is BY FAR my favorite form of stress management. That, and talking to my mom and my friends. I love all of these topics! It shows how diverse the term “health” really is

  2. Running is my favorite form of stress management. I also take a nap when I’m stressed. Sometimes you just have so much to do that the best way to get started is to take a nap 😉

    Nutrition (I can’t remember if I commented on this already): To me, nutrition means feeding your body what makes it happy, makes it strong, and makes it feel good. I am a vegetarian (for health, moral, and environmental reasons, if you’re interested, feel free to ask!) and I noticed a marked improvement in how my body felt when I stopped eating meat 4 years ago. However, even though I was not eating meat, I still wasn’t eating “the best” foods. When I got into my healthy living routine three years ago and started cleaning up my diet, I felt AMAZING! I eat ice cream or desserts still, but if I eat something that’s out of the ordinary for me (something fried or something like that), I feel really gross. I like feeding my body food that’s going to fuel it and keep me satisfied!

    • You know we really should institute a national nap time. I think it would for sure decrease stress and increase productivity 🙂
      I know what you mean! I have had times when I’ve stopped eating something and when I try it eat it again it makes me sick. Like, greasy things and soda make me sick now. Which is good I guess!

  3. The key to nutrition I have found, is to be HONEST with yourself about any underlying emotions and to have an open communication with someone in your life (whomever) that you trust and who loves you and wants the best for you! You need a cheerleader no matter what your “nutrition” goals are… Going at anything alone is a looong journey. Even my new Blog Friends have been an AMAZING source of support– more than I ever thought!!

    • I love that! We definitely need to use each other as support. Also, I am guilty of stress eating (or just emotional eating in general) so I think that’s a great conversation to have with yourself.

  4. I have to reread the books now that I just watched that trailer. There’s too much I’m sure I have forgotten! LOVED those books.
    I relieve stress by reading, running and sometimes taking a nap!! 🙂
    The themed posts you are doing are awesome! 🙂

    • I need to read more! I used to be the biggest bookworm but I just can’t get very into books lately. Makes me really sad. Guess I just haven’t found a good one!
      Oh thank you! It’s been really fun!

  5. I think the 2nd movie looks SO much better than the first; Catching Fire is my favorite book of the trilogy, so I’m embarrassingly excited…I was kind of squealing to my students (who fall into the age group the book is aimed toward) about it and even they thought I was a little TOO excited. No such thing, right?

    I was in Utah the summer of the year Elizabeth Smart was abducted. It was so odd to see posters etc for her. Her story is so inspirational; she really has adjusted so well and is such a strong woman.

    • hahaha no shame for squealing! I would have been just as excited with you 🙂
      yeah it was super surreal to see all the posters. I totally remember it all. It’s nice that this one has a happy ending. I feel like so many of those stories don’t.

  6. Running always helps me relieve stress! Like you said, any form of exercise does, but running is the best way for me.

    I am really excited about the new Hunger games movie! I want to read the second book before I see the movie though. I read the first book and loved it; I just haven’t had time to read the second or third one yet.

  7. Running is a big stress reliever for me- especially since I started running without music! Another thing that really helps me out is just surrendering it to the Lord and realizing that He is bigger than the stress in my life and I get to lean on Him through it!
    YES i am a big hunger games fan! I am so excited for the second movie!

    • Yes! I love both those things. Sometimes completely trusting in the Lord is all you can do.
      I hate that they tease us with these trailers and then it doesn’t even come out til November! UGH!

  8. Pingback: spiritual wellness | see this girl run

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