Do you feel like you are always so busy? Stress has become a social phenomenon and it’s one of the biggest challenges that we face today. Our daily lives have become an endless to-do list and it feels like there’s nothing we can do about it but actually, we have a lot more control over it than we might think.
As part of our New Year, New Me vibe, we want to share some tips to help you manage stress when life gets too much.
1. Keep a stress journal
In order to move forward, we must be able to identify the source of stress in your life. To control your stress level you will need to closely examine your habits – Is the stress temporary? Is it caused by a heavy workload? Is it an integral part of your work life? Or is it part of your personality?
The idea behind starting a stress journal is to be able to record information about your stress so that you can later analyze and manage it. Write in your journal each time you feel stressed and be sure that you use adjectives relating to how you are feeling in that moment. Expressing your emotions is beneficial for stress relief and it has been shown to be effective in reducing anxiety and depression (Pennebaker, Kiecolt-Glaser and Glaser, 1988).
2. Let go
Recognizing that you can’t control every single aspect of your life is the first step. There are always going to be things that are going to bring stress to your life but it is our own choice to decide how we decide how those things affect us.
It might be useful to check your to-do list and have a look at all the things that you are stressed about but you can’t control because they don’t depend on you. By doing this you will realize that the only thing that you can control is your own thoughts, behaviors and reactions. Do you feel better now?
Exercising is one of the best things you can do when you are feeling stressed out and it will make you feel healthier and more in control of your life. Although lying on the sofa and watching Netflix may seem more appealing, exercise will pump up your endorphins, improve your mood and it will also allow yourself to take your mind off problems.
If you don’t have time to workout in the gym or go for a run in the park, you can always go for a quick walk around the block or do some stretching exercises at home.
4. Listen to music
What is it about music that allows us to de-stress? The soothing power of music can have a profound effect on our body and emotions and it’s extremely effective when managing stress. Whether you are feeling stressed, going through a hard time or just had a bad day, music always provides relief.
The best tunes to listen to are those that make you feel comfortable. While some people prefer classical music or listening to the ocean waves or the calm of a deep forest, others go for their favorite rock band as singing along to the songs can also help relieve tension.
We have created a playlist you can listen to whenever you feel the urge to unwind and let go of stress and worries.
5. Slow down
Take a deep breath. Sit up straight, close your eyes and put your hands on your belly. Focus your attention on your breathing. Slowly inhale air through your nose, hold your breath and slowly exhale the air through your mouth.
Sometimes it feels like we are living too fast. We tend to spend so much time in the past or in the future that we ignore the present. It is very important to take five minutes and spend time in the moment – feel how the air feels on your face while you are walking, enjoy the taste of the meal that you are eating.
Make sure that you have some “me time” every day- you can write it down in your planner so that you don’t forget! It can simply be relaxing with a nice cup of tea or reading a book, whatever makes you feel happy, simply enjoy the time out.
How do you handle stress? Do you have any tips? Share it with us in the comments below!