Tracking your steps and sleep has been a huge focus of health management over the last several years. However, in 2021, there’s now a focus on measuring your stress throughout the day! With the COVID-19 pandemic, stress has taken a huge toll on many Americans, so this new trend couldn’t be more timely. Stress is a big factor in contributing to heart disease, the leading cause of death in America, so keeping a handle on your stress is vital.
If you’re looking to track and decrease your daily stress levels, there are several options for you! Many fitness trackers have previously tracked heart rate data to determine levels of stress. Thanks to developments in this technology, newer fitness tracker models now track your blood oxygen levels and your breathing to identify anxious periods throughout the day. However, these trackers can be expensive and not necessary to track your stress.
There are several free mobile phone apps available, or you can simply use a journal. You can document your stressful periods and moods, and take your heart rate at several points in the day. To take your heart rate, place a finger on the vein of your wrist or neck and count the heartbeat for 30 seconds. Once you have that number, multiply it by 2 and that’s your heart rate.
You may be asking yourself, why track my stress? If you can identify behaviors or situations that put you in a stressful mindset, you can work on coping methods to decrease your stress or avoid those situations! Working on managing your stress can improve your overall health and keep your heart happy and healthy.
3 Helpful Tips for Managing your Stress:
- Exercise for 30 minutes 5 times a week
- Take deep breaths several times a day
- Eat a nutritionally balanced diet