You’re halfway through this first part of The De-Stress Effect 6 Week Plan – congratulations!
You have probably identified some areas in your life that need to change to allow you to keep up this self-care long-term. These next three weeks in the Food Liberation Phase (see page 114) are the time to honestly evaluate which changes you will keep up after week 6 and which you can integrate as you address longer term issues. It is important not to promise yourself unrealistic goals that set you up to fail – a common stress cycle pattern – but to cultivate a sense of moving in the right direction in a stress-free manner.
All of the work you have done has been creating the sense memories that you can subconsciously and knowingly refer back to in any time of stress. We all have ups and downs and are not striving for perfection – that’s just too stressful an ideal. Here you have the opportunity to formulate how you can live life within your reality with the details that most support you feeling and looking great.
Habits vs Treats
You’ll see in the book that this second phase involves introducing a mindful relationship with treats. In this podcast I follow the info in the book (see page xxx) and discuss how to enjoy a little of what you fancy without it feeling like it spins you out of control.
De-Stress tools to help you make the transition:
De-Stress Reflection Journal – take your time over this and copy the questions into a dedicated notebook or journal if writing really helps you. This is worth a try if you haven’t before as writing can help to organise thoughts and highlight aspects of your habits you may not have noticed. It can also be very De-Stressing to move any analysis or comments you have been hanging on to with all the changes you have been making. After all, in the pursuit of feeling your way instead of stressful overthinking, continual evaluation of your progress can keep you back up in that chattering brain when you could be taking 10 Deep Breaths!
The Stress Gauge – this is a good time to check in and see how you are responding to the changes you have made. We suggest that you don’t look back at your first answers, only comparing after you have revisited the quiz and answered quite quickly and intuitively. Hopefully you have seen some progress – slow and steady is the best, most fundamental and likely to stick long-term. If not, go back to the book (and the Progress Charts from Day 1) to explore what aspects of your diet and life might be holding you back and where you can realistically change.
How best to approach this transition for your specific Stress Suit(s)
After three weeks, you may be identifying areas where your Stress Suit tendencies need a little help. The following recommendations from the De-Stress Supplement ebook may be of help whilst you bring down the stress hormones in your life:
Stressed and Wired
You may need help supplementing with nutrients needed for energy production if you’re struggling to bring down the sugar and caffeine because it is difficult to focus or function without them. This is key to be able toenjoy the odd treat without it taking you back into craving territory.
Stressed and Tired
If you are still feeling fatigued, despite your De-Stress efforts, check your status for Energy Nutrients for Tired Suits: Iron and also for vitamin B12, especially if you are vegetarian. You can consider getting your levels checked by your GP. Careful that any treats you introduce don’t start to prop you up again.
Similarly to Stressed and Tired, if energy and circulation are feeling they might need some support, check your dietary sources of thyroid-supporting iodine (see supplement ebook) and whether a supplement might be appropriate. Keep any treats to the minimum to continue with good blood sugar balance.
Stressed and Bloated
If you’ve been taking the probiotic in the recommended 6 Week Plan Supplement Programme and doing many digestive supporting measures, but still feeling like stress is affecting digestion, consider taking digestive enzymes with each meal for a few months. Avoid high sugar treats and those with wheat in that may irritate your gut.
Stressed and Sore
Bringing down inflammation can take time if your body has been stuck in this tone for a long time. If you are struggling to cover all the factors that help bring down stress, an anti-inflammatory/antioxidant supplement can help bring any dietary gaps. See the Stressed and Bloated treat advice above.
Stressed and Demotivated
Make sure you get out into sunlight as often as you can, but if life and the season are getting in your way, consider if a vitamin D3 supplement could be of help. Take caution that treats don’t become a mood crutch, so keep sugar low.
Stressed and Hormonal
Balancing female hormones relies on your liver working to its optimum. Consider if you need extra help at the moment – especially if still experiencing sugar cravings – with a liver supporting supplement. Be particularly mindful of treats around your period if you still menstruate.