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Keep calm and carry on with these helpful tips for fighting stress and anxious thoughts.

be calm

It’s easy to find things that stress you out. While stress can be a good thing—think of the fight or flight response while running from danger—too much stress has the opposite effect.
1. Control what can be controlled.
 
According to stress experts from the American Institute of Stress, a key component in managing stress is feeling in control of it. A lack of control leaves us feeling weak and vulnerable—the same way Kryptonite sends Superman to his knees.
 
Todd Bello, a National Psoriasis Foundation volunteer with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis in Long Island, New York, said gentle-to-moderate exercise helps with his stress.
 
“My doctor recommended that I exercise and eat right to reduce stress. I found this most helpful with my psoriatic arthritis. I prefer low-impact exercise like walking or riding a bike, which is less traumatic on the joints,” he said.
 
By closely monitoring his diet, Bello feels more in control of his psoriatic arthritis. That’s why he also avoids foods like bread, dairy, sugar and preservatives that he said tend to increase his inflammation, which increases his stress.
 
2. Focus on breathing.
 
We breathe to stay alive—but when stressed, our brains require even more oxygen, said Lauren E. Miller, stress expert and author of “5 Minutes to Stress Relief: How to Release Fear, Worry and Doubt Instantly.”
 
Instead of the common wisdom of taking deep breaths, Miller suggests breathing in through the nose and out through the nose in a continuous fashion—with quick breaths—as a daily ritual.
 
“Close the mouth and cough several times, exhaling through the nose,” said Miller. When you need more air, just inhale through the nose and continue.
 
Upon waking, Miller said she breathes like this for about 60 breaths.
 
3. Get moving—just for a minute.
 
Another way to combat stress is to get on your feet for a few minutes.
 
“Stand up and bounce on the balls of your feet—it helps the body drain the lymphatic system and toxins in the body,” Miller said.
 
Now, combine bouncing while massaging the back of your neck to help you relax, Miller said.
 read more: https://www.psoriasis.org/blog/4-ways-fight-stress-4-psoriatic-arthritis?utm_source=email&utm_campaign=npfblog&utm_content=may032016&cmp=1&utm_medium=npfblog
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