What is my secret to stress management?

Author: Dr. Michelle Durkin on 4 April 2017

If someone asked me how I was doing over the last three months I could easily have said "stressed".

I have taken on a couple of major projects that probably should not have been attempted at the same time, I have had two significant staff changes, and I'm training for the CN Tower Climb. Add on to that family commitments and a full-time job and it's easy to see how my plate got too full too fast.

So what's my secret to keeping it all together? 

Here are 3 important keys to stress management that I not only practice, but also preach to my patients:

  1. Eat my veggies - I imagine how I would feel mentally and physically if I was not eating a proper diet. I can imagine this because I see it in my patients every day. Eating 1/2 my plate veggies is always my focus and then I build the rest of my meal around that. If I can't get veggies in at breakfast, I aim to at least have some protein and good fat - like a smoothie with protein powder and avocado, and stay away from high-carb, grain-based things - like cereal, toast, pancakes, or bagels.
  2. Yin Yoga - I have switched from doing hot yoga to this slower, gentler version to reduce my cortisol levels by 50% each time I practice. Right now I am doing 2X a week, once a week at a yoga studio, and once a week at home using a YouTube video I found online.
  3. Chunking - This involves breaking the projects I have to complete into smaller, more doable steps. I always feel myself getting overwhelmed when I look at all the things I need to get done all at once. Once I break it down into smaller steps it becomes much more manageable and I'm more productive if I can focus on one step at a time. The other benefit of breaking it down into smaller chunks it that I can decide which of those steps I can delegate to someone else. In recent weeks, this meant hiring a student to come into the office three days a week to do data entry that otherwise would cost me hours of time. The quote I was reminded of before I made the decision to hire was this, "If you can spend money to solve the problem, you don't have a problem."

Want to know more stress-busting information and techniques that you can start using for yourself? Sign up for my Stress-Busters seminar with Dana Goodfellow, registered massage therapist and meditation facilitator on Wednesday April 26th at 6pm. For more information, or to save your spot, please call the office at 613-966-9660.

Now I would love to hear from you! What is your stress-busting secret? Leave a comment below and I'll be back next week with another edition of Doctor as Teacher Tuesday!

5 Replies to “What is my secret to stress management?”

Needed this one….has been a very crazy couple of months. I was doing some Yin Yoga a few years ago but stopped. I really liked on by Ester Ekhart…loved her accent and calming voice.


Could you please recommend a good protein product

Dr Michelle Durkin ND

Hi Barbara,
It depends on the person. Not all protein powders are created equal. I don’t use the same one with every patient. Personally I currently use the Paleo Protein powder by Designs for Health, but will also rotate through different medical foods like UltraInflamX360 by Metagenics, UltraMeal360 by Metagenics, and SynerClear by VitaAid. The medical foods usually use rice protein as the base because it is anti-inflammatory.
In general you want to look for one that is low in sugar and non dairy-based (caesin and whey are more likely to cause leaky gut syndrome) but it is best to speak with your naturopath at your next visit to see which one is best for you.

Laurraine Bauer

Woud you send me the website adress and your instructor’s name🤗

Dr Michelle Durkin ND

I go to a class at Mindful Movements here in Belleville.

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