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If you’re reading this, you’re likely looking for guidance with getting through something difficult. Looking to reduce stress? Whether you struggle with family issues, health, or financial trouble, I want you to know that there are ways to reduce stress and feel better about it—and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel!

As a licensed physical therapist, speaker, and author, I’ve seen firsthand how the physical converges with the mental and spiritual. I’ve seen my own patients practice these exercises, combined with treatment, and get terrific results—as you can read in their testimonials.

One study found that its participants had lower levels of depression and anxiety after receiving weekly one-on-one prayer sessions. Another study was conducted with mothers of children with cancer. In the study, those who participated in written prayer exhibited significant reductions in anxiety when compared to the control group. That’s good news, because writing is an important part of the six exercises to reduce stress.

If you’re working to relieve stress in your life, prayer is an essential part of your healthy practices.

Here are the steps I take to make prayer a healthy habit and relieve stress:

1. List your concerns on paper.

Your problems may seem daunting when they’re all rattling around your mind at once, but by writing them down, you can get a grip on what’s really bothering you. Think of yourself as having a bird’s-eye-view of your earthly problems. Write out your concerns.

2. Consult God’s word.

See what the Bible has to say about similar concerns and situations. Remember, you’re not alone. Chances are, others have been in a similar situation as you, and you may just find one of those stories in the Bible. Now is a good time to turn to the comfort and promises of Scripture.

God's word, the Bible

3. Find a quiet, peaceful place.

Whether that means stepping out onto your front porch, closing your bedroom door, or taking a spot on a park bench, pick a comforting change of scenery. It may be just what your brain needs. Here, you can do your B-M-W (breathe, melt and wiggle) [LINK] to relax your body, heart, and mind.

4. Pour your heart out to God aloud.

Speaking your prayers and pains out loud has an amazing power to bring worries out of the darkness and into the light. Look at the Psalms and how David cries out to God and then focuses on His promises, love, and care. Don’t be afraid to tell God what’s stressing you—but if you’re in a library, you may want to go find an open field or an enclosed room!

5. Remember the past.

Within your own background, I’m sure there are many battles that you feel God has helped you win. Take a moment to recall those triumphs, the hard times where you may have felt He was truly looking out for you. As well, consider God’s promises to His children—you are NEVER alone! Using the past to help reduce stress can be a helpful release.

6. Ask God for help to forgive to reduce stress.

Sometimes it can feel so much easier to let yourself feel bitter, vengeful, and resentful when you’ve been wronged. But that’s not healthy. Vengeance has the power to eat at you without ever affecting the other person. Forgiveness will cleanse your system of these poisons. Forgiveness helps YOU reduce stress. You have many talents and a lot of love to give—so why waste that energy on resentment? Ask God to help you forgive.


I get it. Right now, life’s stresses and troubles may seem so hard to bear. And your stressful thoughts and hurting heart may be manifesting itself in your body. We’ve heard of heartache from stress, but how about neck ache and stomach ache? Add those to the list.

You can’t avoid stress, but you can approach it effectively. Give these steps a shot, because you deserve a chance to heal, and that’s what I’m all about!