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How To Relieve Stress

You DO have control over how to relieve stress within parts of your life. Many of the stress solutions you seek ARE within your control.

If, for instance, you were out walking and saw a dog that’s out of control, you would CHOOSE how to best take care of yourself by crossing the street.

You made a choice ahead of time about how you were to cope with the stress you were about to encounter.

Conversely, if on that walk you unexpectedly encountered that dog as you turned a corner then you would have to subsequently work on reducing your high stress and anxiety.

Learn how to relieve stress with the BEST of them

Learning how to relieve stress is about becoming more conscious of the day-to-day things you do, and asking yourself, “Is this choice I’m making going to relieve stress, or force me to cope with stress even more than I already am?”

There IS a BEST of you that flourishes when you are not stressed. For more information on the BEST of who you are visit ways to reduce stress.


The physical body. If you inadvertently keep making choices that keep your body out of balance, with time, the physical symptoms of coping with stress will start to wear you down.

Ask yourself the following questions to help you choose how to relieve stress on your body:
  • Are you getting 6-8 hours of sleep each night?
  • Are you eating a balanced diet most of the time?
  • Are you managing your weight?
  • Are you stretching your tense muscles throughout the day?
  • Are you limiting or staying away from the use of alcohol and drugs?
  • Are you getting 30 minutes (doesn’t have to be consecutive min.) of activity 5 x’s/week?
  • Are you doing regular visits with your doctor, massage therapist, healer?
  • Are you giving yourself time each week for yoga, meditation, chi gong, or dancing?


The emotional part of who you are. We live in a culture that values stuffing of our emotions. This creates stress within us. Your benchmark for being in balance is when the emotional part of you feels peaceful and calm.

Ask yourself the following questions as a way to bring more balance to the emotional part of who you are:
  • Are you being honest with yourself and others about what you are feeling?
  • Are you saying “yes” when you really want to say “no”?
  • Are you keeping everything inside?
  • Do you allow yourself a chance to cry when you are stressed?
  • Do you let yourself share your feelings with a trusted friend or family member?
  • Do you let yourself express your true feelings in a journal?


The spiritual part of who you are. I refer to the ways to reduce stress spiritually as how congruent your actions/behaviors are in comparison to who you believe you are as a person. When you are not coping with stress, you will feel at peace with your actions and behaviors.

Ask yourself the following questions to help you choose how to relieve stress within the spiritual part of who you are:

  • Are you aware if the intentions of your words and actions are to hurt yourself or others?
  • Do the words you speak about yourself or others reduce stress, or create stress?
  • Are you aware if the words you speak are creating peace in yourself or others?


The brain and all that you have learned. When you are out-of-balance with your thoughts, that stress can make you more judgmental, reactive, negative, and gossipy.

Ask yourself the following questions to help you choose how to relieve stress with your thoughts:
  • Are you aware of how many of your thoughts are judgmental of yourself or others?
  • Are you aware of how much of your time is spent in thoughts of fear, shame, and guilt?
  • How much time during the day do you also think about nature, animals, and the beauty that surrounds you each day?
Learning how to relieve stress by making healthier choices does not come naturally to most. But, by integrating even a few of these natural stress relief strategies WILL start to reduce your stress. And, you would start to experience how possible it IS for YOU to relieve stress.

Share Your Tips, and Ask Questions Too

There are lots of ways of reducing stress. If you have discovered a way that works for you, please share it here. Or, if you have a question about ways to reduce stress, I am glad to answer them here.

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What Other Visitors Have Said

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how can i igore stress at home? 
I feel I can ignore my stress pretty much everywhere except at home. Can you tell me how I can ignore stress at home as well?

Nancy, thank you for …

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I'm good at what I do, and I don't put up with alot of crap. I find that people treat you badly because you are a threat. What can I do about this? …

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How you can release stress by doing simple relaxation techniques? I don't get it. To me it seems like you either are stressed or you aren't. I'm not …

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I would like to think that I do pretty well managing my stress at home, but I really can't seem to do it well while at work. It's too hard there. How …

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I'm truly struggling with burnout with life. I can barely stand to be around other people at all anymore. Can you clarify the effects of chronic stress …

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I've been living with a stressful life for so long that I'm wondering is it too late to manage my stress?

Katie, thank you for the question. Here's …

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What is the best way to free stress from my life? Thx.

Linda, thank you for the question. I don't really believe that any of us can free ourselves …

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What if I wanted to lower the stress level of my students by playing pay if forward stress relieving music? Any suggestions?

Joy, what a fascinating …

3 effective ways of coping with stress Not rated yet
I'm looking for 3 effective ways of coping with stress that would feel possible to do in my day.

Sally, thank you for the question. What you have …

Considered good type of stress? Not rated yet
Mostly I hear about stress as bad. But, aren't there some stress that can be considered good type of stress as well?

Thank you for the question, …

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Hey, I like to listen to hard rock. Is that a bad way to reduce my stress?

Very interesting question, Greg. The majority of the time I would say, …

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For more information, please see:

Coping With Stress - Stress Management Survey -- Increase your awareness for how stress may be impacting your life.

Exercise Relieves Stress -- There is no way around the fact that exercise relieves stress.

How To Deal With Stress -- Learn how to deal with stress and increase the quality of your life.

Control My Stress -- Let's work together now to control your stress.

Stress Relief Exercise -- The top 3 most powerful stress relief exercise strategies!

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“Ms. Churchill is the unique health care worker everyone hopes to encounter, but rarely does. She has an extraordinary gift that allows her to do much more than diagnose and treat.”
Abbie K. – Minneapolis

K., age 45, is a long term chronically PTSD disabled patient. She has had daily headaches for 20 years. Two weeks ago she reported that she had had 4 days of pain free time, and was having the exceedingly odd sensation of "smiling all the time". She and Cathi have made extraordinary fast progress together.
Dr. Cole

I referred C.L., age mid-forties, to see Cathi after a life of suffering the post traumatic stress disorder of parental sexual abuse over many years of her childhood, with major dysfunctions of alcohol and drug abuse, and with the disabling symptoms of migraine that have for more than twenty years become chronic.

She has lived with daily headaches that have not responded to any of the several drugs which have benefited many such suffering patients. She has needed chronic opiate treatment of her chronic pain syndrome.

In the few weeks that Cathi has worked with her, C.L. has begun to experience days without pain, periods of happiness, and a reduction in her opiate dosage requirements that represent a breakthrough in her stalled-out life as a single mom raising a teen-age daughter with only social security income resources.
Dr. Racer

“I first met Cathi Churchill eight years ago when she effectively helped my work unit through the stress of a hospital-wide layoff. I was impressed with her clear-minded approach and willingness to listen.”
Andy R.

N., age 60, is a hard driving attorney twenty year patient of mine who hit the wall with chronic fatigue four years ago, and began to realize she had to learn to rest. She recovered enough to return to her workaholic lifestyle when she was stopped by a herniated cervical disc and resumption of her chronic colitis.

Working with Cathi, she is discovering "the way she does life" and learning to make choices about it. She came in last week, having "danced until dawn". She is learning to dialogue with her body in effective ways.
Dr. Cole

“I stumbled upon Cathi after my recent heart attack that was brought on by stress. I was scared of having another one, and didn’t know what to do. I had lost hope. Working with her has changed my life. I’m so grateful."
Debbie – Canada

M.S., a woman in her late forties with progressively more and more disabling rheumatoid arthritis since childhood, whose most recent problems have arisen over the last two to three years as complications of immunosuppressive therapy for her disease. The complications have been associated with the severely disabling chronic pain of recurrent herpes neuralgia for more than three years, and for the past 15 months, recurrent osteomyelitis in her right lower mandible.

The second, more alarming (even life-threatening) problem has caused months of diagnostic and therapy confusion among her many consultants, three successive resections of the bone over the last six to eight months, and the still ongoing threat of more relapses of the smoldering bone infection and chronic pain only made bearable by chronic, massive doses of opiates.

In the few months since M. began to work with Cathi with several modalities: stress management, therapeutic touch, guided imaging, and others, her life has become more livable, as she has become able to bear the pain and the discouragement of unresolved disease.

She has relied on many of the methods for maintaining hope and getting through overwhelming discouragement by using the inner resources she has learned with Cathi.

My hope as her primary physician, is that Cathi and M. will be able to continue to work together to maintain that inner strength and hope as she faces yet more months of pain, and further repeated surgery.

Thank you for the healing guidance you've been able to give her thus far.
Dr. Racer

“I sought out the help of Cathi during my divorce, and found her to be an insightful and compassionate coach. Her ability to see deep into the heart of an emotionally stressful problem is, I believe, unique and I would highly recommend her service to anyone.”
P.R. – Brooklyn Center

S., age 48, is a Laotian patient of mine with 15 years of chronic abdominal pain. She has had an extensive medical worked up, and nothing ever worked. Cathi saw her over several months.

S. has improved! Cathi established a trusting relationship with her, and helped her to effectively break through her wall of silence and grief about her son's mental illness, and taught her how to "change her thinking".

S. now comes in smiling, notes some unusual continued symptoms, but no longer has chronic abdominal disabling pain.
Dr. Cole

“Control My Stress is so amazing. I want to thank you, again, for such a valuable resource.”

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