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Healthyroads Offers Seven Stress-Busting Tips to Relieve Trying Times During National Stress Awareness Month

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SAN DIEGO, April 8, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- There's no getting around it: Stress is a fact of life for nearly everyone. Stress is the body's natural reaction to a "challenge" – and this hyper-fast world we live in is certainly full of challenges.



April is National Stress Awareness Month, the perfect time to pause and take stock of how you cope with the pressures of modern life. Healthyroads, Inc. – the award-winning wellness subsidiary of American Specialty Health Incorporated – encourages everyone to ratchet stress down a notch. These stress-busting tips can help bring peace of mind – and may boost your health as well:

  1. Breathe From Your Belly
    When we are stressed, our body responds with quick, shallow breaths. Deep breathing can help. Deep breathing comes from the diaphragm - your main breathing muscle. When you use this muscle for breathing, your belly will move in and out. Use belly breathing to reduce an unwanted stress response. This will tell your mind and body to let go of the stress.
  2. Notice the Good in Your Life
    Appreciating the good in your life can calm the nervous system and make relaxing easier. This doesn't just happen on its own: You need to choose to stop and smell the roses. It takes effort, and it takes practice, but it is a great way to feel more at peace.
  3. Tense to Relax
    Tight muscles, clenched fists and a rigid back: Your brain is hard-wired to get your body ready to fight during stressful situations. Try tensing a muscle, and then relaxing it. Notice how much more relaxed your muscle is after it has been tensed. Try this for each muscle in your body. Adding belly breathing as you tense and relax your muscles may also help.
  4. Visualize Success
    The mind has a strong effect on the body. Our thoughts, both positive and negative, affect how our body performs. Many studies show that positive thoughts help reduce pain and relax the body. Seeing success also lets us find better ways to solve our problems and makes us more likely to achieve our goals and dreams.
  5. Just Say No
    When we act in ways that go against what we think, feel or want, stress and illness often follow. Learn how and when to say "no." Saying no can keep you from feeling trapped in something you didn't really want to do in the first place. Simply knowing that you have a choice can help reduce your stress level.
  6. Stop Doing What Doesn't Work
    Just because something used to work doesn't mean that it still does. Staying with a habit because it feels comfortable may seem to work, but it may be keeping you from the things that can truly bring happiness. When what you are doing is not working, try to quiet your mind and to find a better solution.
  7. Accept What You Cannot Change
    It's not unusual to react with anger when confronted by stressful situations. One key to living a happier life is to learn when to fight and when to accept. Focus on the things you can do: Choose the battles that mean something and that you have a chance of winning. And find a way to come to peace with those you can't change.

It's hard to avoid stress. But, by using the Healthyroads strategies listed above, you'll certainly be better able to cope with it – and with this modern world.

About Healthyroads

Healthyroads, Inc., a subsidiary of American Specialty Health Incorporated (ASH), offers a wide range of population health solutions, including: the award-winning Healthyroads® telephone-based lifestyle and health coaching programs, member engagement promotion programs, program management, health risk assessments, biometric screenings, claims analytics, risk stratification, outreach, incentive management programs, competitive group challenges, worksite wellness programs and/or an integrated online wellness portal, Healthyroads.com. Healthyroads offers these programs to more than 5.7 million members nationally. For more information about Healthyroads programs, visit ASHCompanies.com or call (800) 848-3555. Follow us on Twitter at @Healthyroads, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Healthyroads, on Instagram @Healthyroads, on Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/healthyroads/ and on YouTube at www.youtube.com/healthyroads.

ABOUT AMERICAN SPECIALTY HEALTH

American Specialty Health Incorporated (ASH) is a national health services organization that provides fitness and exercise programs, population health solutions and specialty health care programs for health plans, insurance carriers, employer groups and trust funds. Headquartered in San Diego, CA, with offices in Dallas, TX, Indianapolis, IN and Columbia, SC, ASH has more than 1,000 employees and administers services for more than 32 million members nationwide. Additional products offered through ASH and its subsidiaries include Silver&Fit®, FitnessCoach, Active&Fit®, ExerciseRewardsTM and others. Established in 1987, ASH is currently celebrating its 25th anniversary. For more information about ASH, visit www.ASHCompanies.com or call 800-848-3555. Follow us on LinkedIn or Twitter at @ASHCompanies.

CONTACT: American Specialty Health Lisa Freeman 800.848.3555, ext. 3722 Direct: 310-390-3070 lisaf@ashn.com

Source:American Specialty Health