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Say Yes to Less Stress With Mind/Body Techniques That Work, From Dr. Kathy Gruver, Natural Health Expert and Author

April 25, 2014   Health News
(PRLEAP.COM) April 25, 2014 - Stressed? Between the news, bills, health and family issues, traffic, and even long lines at the supermarket, stress is always with us. "Say yes to less stress," says Dr. Kathy Gruver, a natural health expert and author whose latest book is "Conquer Your Stress with Mind/Body Techniques.

"Yes, you read that right. We can't do anything about stress – but we can do something about how we react to stress," says Gruver. National Stress Awareness Month (April) ends in a few days; the causes of stress remain. "Sixty to eighty percent of doctors' visits are due to stress," says Gruver. "That's a fortune in diminished productivity."

Here Gruver offers a handful of tips and techniques that anyone can practice – at home, at work, in the car, even in line at the post office – to ease stress and lead happier, healthier lives.

1. Eliminate self-defeating, self-limiting thoughts and replace them with positive thoughts. We think about 60,000 thoughts a day and 80% of them are negative. Our brain can't tell the difference between what we're thinking and what is really happening; this is why we have to be very careful what we're daydreaming and fantasizing about." It's hard to stop thinking things, but we can certainly replace them with positive thoughts.

This is where affirmations come in. Make them short, positive, and in the present. For example, rather than "I'm not sick anymore," say "I am healthy and well." A few more: I am wealthy and prosperous…My body is strong and resilient…I attract love and support…Supportive, helpful friends surround me…I am living a fulfilled life. Say these to yourself several times each day. Write them out and put them on your bathroom mirror.

2. Daydream and visualize. Every time we daydream, we are visualizing. We can tap into that skill for health, wellness, and stress-busting.

3. Think you don't have time or patience to meditate? Try "minis" instead. Mini Meditations are simple techniques to help with relaxation all day long. I learned these during a week I spent, along with 120 medical doctors and other health professionals, at the famed Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Harvard Medical School. They take just seconds and can be truly life-changing.

Do these seated comfortably if you can, but you can do them anywhere. Mini #1: Count very slowly to yourself from 10 down to 0, one number on each outbreath. Breathe in, and on your first outbreath, say "10" to yourself. With the next outbreath, say "9," working your way down to "0." When you get to "0," notice how you feel.

Here's another. On the inhale, think, "I am…" and on the exhale, think, "…at peace." Repeat several times.

4. Use your exercise or sports activity as a mindfulness practice. The more present you are in the moment, the better your performance will be. And it's a great distraction from our cares, woes, and pain. Focusing on something with mindfulness and curiosity does wonders for our stress response.

5. Don't forget to do all the things your mother told you: Get plenty of rest, eat lots of vegetables and fruits, remember to pick up your clothes (and don't what you don't need), and put a smile on your face.

Dr. Kathy Gruver is a natural health expert, sought-after speaker, educator, practitioner, award-winning author, and host of the national TV show based on her first book, The Alternative Medicine Cabinet (OTV, debuting in 2014). She earned her PhD in Natural Health and has authored two more books, Conquer Your Stress with Mind/Body Techniques (2013) and Body/Mind Therapies for the Bodyworker. Gruver has been featured as an expert in numerous publications including Yahoo.com, HuffingtonPost, Ladies Home Journal, People.com, CNN.com, SkyNews London, Massage and Bodyworks Magazine, Massage Magazine, Glamour – Mexico/Latin America, and Awareness magazine. She has appeared as a guest expert on over 200 radio and TV shows including on NPR, CBS Radio, and Lifetime Television and lectures around the country.

The Alternative Medicine Cabinet is a 2013 Beverly Hills Book Award winner and a finalist in the Indie Excellence Awards. Conquer Your Stress with Mind/Body Techniques is a 2014 Beverly Hills book Award winner, a finalist, 2013 USA Best Book Awards, and named one of Top 50 Nonfiction of 2013 by radio host Cyrus Webb.

Gruver's healthy, active lifestyle includes hip-hop dance classes and monthly flying trapeze classes on the Santa Monica Pier. See www.TheAlternativeMedicineCabinet.com
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