Unfortunately stress is something we all experience at times in our lives, some of us more than others. It seems to me that the more I stress about something in particular, the more stressed out I become!
Unfortunately chronic stress has been linked to many serious health conditions, and shouldn’t be dismissed as just part of life. If you are a person who experiences stress on a daily level, or can tell that stress is having a negative impact upon your health, career and/ or relationships, then it is important for you to start taking steps to help reduce this stress. By actively reducing stress you will notice that you become more present and efficient in both what you do, and the relationships you have with others.
Implement some stress management
Take time out - Spending some quality ‘me’ time is important in everyone’s life, even if you are a very social person. Try to make some time each day to participate in an activity that you find both fun and relaxing, such as:
- Having a massage
- Practicing meditation
- Do a class, such as yoga, dance or art
- Go for a morning walk, or bike ride
- Take a bath
- Read a book
Actively avoid unnecessary stress - Life can be stressful enough without inviting more stress into it. So try to avoid unnecessary stress by
- Avoiding people that stress you out. If there are people in your life that make you feel anxious or stressed, try to limit the amount of time you spend around them, or remove them all together.
- Be assertive and learn to say no. Sometimes you just need to say that you have enough on your plate without taking on more responsibility.
- Be aware of your environment. You cannot control everything in your environment but you can avoid watching shows that might upset you, or social situations that you are not comfortable with. Try listening to relaxing music when driving or commuting.
Sleep it off - Lack of sleep will really amp up your stress levels so it is important that you get enough evening Z’s, to help avoid and reduce stress.
Reduce stimulants - Caffeine and alcohol might seem as though they help you deal with stress, however these are things that can actually exacerbate your stress levels over time. This doesn’t mean that you have to avoid these altogether, however if you are a person who suffers from high levels of stress, then it might be a good idea to reflect on how often you use these.
Share the burden - Ask for help when you need it. There is nothing wrong with reaching out and asking for a bit of help at times. Besides, being social and interacting with other people is known to help de escalate stress levels.
Live healthy - A healthy diet and regular exercise regime will help improve your resistance to stress and make you better equipped to deal with stressful situations. Plus it will enhance the quality of your life by making you healthier and happier!