We all experience stress. It’s a normal part of life and it’s pretty much impossible to avoid. Stress can actually be beneficial because it helps you react fast in dangerous situations and it motivates you to work hard when you need to. However, if you experience loads of stress on the daily and it’s keeping you from living your best life, then you definitely need some stress management tips.
Chronic stress certainly does more harm than good. This type of stress has been linked to the development of various diseases, such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and depression. If you suffer from chronic stress, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ve listed 15 must-know stress management techniques that you can start using today. Let’s jump right in!
Meditation is a great way to clear your mind, relax, and improve concentration. When you feel that your mind is racing and you can’t get anything done because of the stress, do a quick guided meditation and you should feel much better after. It’s a great idea to practice meditation each morning for 5-10 minutes.
Affirmations are crazy effective at helping cope with stress. All you have to do is convince yourself that you’re fine and calm and eventually, you will be. Whenever you feel stressed, write down or say out loud things like, “I am calm and relaxed”, “My stress is melting away”, “I am doing a great job and I am proud of myself”.
Carefully plan out your day
Do you often have countless tasks for the day? And you never know where to start, causing you to be unproductive and even more stressed? Then you need more organization throughout your day. Every night before bed, write down a schedule for tomorrow. Plan specific time slots for your tasks and errands, and always schedule some time to relax.
Sitting around all day is often what causes stress to build up. Make sure to move at least a little each day. Whether it’s just a walk, some stretching, or a proper workout, by focusing on your physical fitness, you’ll be able to calm down and reduce your stress levels.
Adjust your diet
Your diet hugely influences your mental health. Try to avoid stress-inducing foods, such as processed sugar, caffeine, and alcohol. Instead, focus on a diet rich in healthy carbs, fats, and make sure to include plenty of fruits and veggies. Here’s a fun fact: according to a study by Martin et. al, even dark chocolate can effectively reduce stress levels.
Have a healthy morning routine
The way you start your day sets the tone for how you feel later on. If you start the day off with loads of caffeine, no exercise, and hurry to work without having a proper breakfast, you’ll likely be stressed out. Here’s a great article on how to create a healthy morning routine. By following the tips in the article, you’ll set the tone for a calm and stress-free day!
Forget your job, school, and stressful people in your life and just go outside for a bit. Take in the fresh air, nature, and enjoy your own company. Mother nature will calm you down and make you feel much more relaxed and grounded.
Listen to music
We all know how greatly music can influence our mood. It can cheer us up, make us sad, and make us feel nostalgic. So of course, music also affects us when we feel stressed. Listen to some soft, calm, perhaps classical music whenever you’re feeling stressed.
Avoid stressful people
It’s often the people in our lives that make us feel stressed out. Try to identify who these people are and try to avoid them as much as you can. Whoever it may be, you need to think about your wellbeing first, even if it means talking a bit less with your parents or certain friends.
Take some “me time”
Sometimes you just need to be alone and connect with yourself, especially if you have a lot of stressful people in your life. Schedule some “me time” at least once a week and spend that time doing your favorite relaxing activities.
We spend way too much time on our phones and laptops. Many of us are completely addicted to social media, which only makes us even more stressed out. Try to unplug for at least a little while each day. Instead of being on your phone, try reading a book, going for a walk, or meditating.
Talk to a friend or therapist
Talking to someone is also a great stress management technique. Find someone to talk to who will understand what you’re going through. This way, you won’t feel so alone in your problems and you might also receive some great stress management tips.
Deep breathing is actually one of the most effective stress management techniques. It helps you calm down and sends a signal to your brain to reduce stress. So whenever you feel stressed, pause for a minute, close your eyes, and do some deep breathing.
Sleep quality affects every aspect of our lives. If we’re not fully rested, we get tired, anxious, and stressed out. Paradoxically, stress is usually the cause of poor sleep quality. If you’ve been having trouble sleeping, here’s a great article on how to improve sleep quality.
Melatonin is a hormone that our bodies produce naturally to help us fall asleep. If you have trouble sleeping (which most stressed people do), then your melatonin production may be out of whack.
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