How to Manage Stress
Updated: Mar 30
No matter how hard people try to avoid it, stress will always be a part of life. Various factors in our everyday lives can create friction, leading to stress. However, stress does not always have to be a negative experience. It is a survival mechanism that, in the right amounts, can help you power through difficult tasks. The key to living with stress is to manage it well. You have to master your reaction to stressful situations so you don’t freeze up at critical moments or have a nervous breakdown. There are several ways how to go about stress management, whether at home by yourself or with a professional. The main goal is not to avoid the problem you’ve encountered but to put things into perspective so you can better handle that problem. Below are a few stress reduction tips.
Maintain a healthy diet
High amounts of sugar in unhealthy food and beverages have been found to cause irregularities in the brain’s normal function. If you keep an unhealthy diet, your ability to deal with stress will decline, along with the health of your brain. One way to ensure that your brain is well-fed and equipped with enough nutrients to provide power to help you get through the day is to eat a healthy diet. Fruits and vegetables filled with vitamins, fibre, and minerals can help you think clearly and function better. Drinking milk that is rich in calcium and vitamin D can also help you develop a stronger physique, which can help you become more efficient when dealing with daily tasks.
What's happening on the outside of your body will have a direct impact on your mental well-being. By caring for your physical health through regular exercise and activities, you’ll be able to develop a stronger mind and body that will enable you to deal with daily stressors better. Exercise also triggers a flood of feel-good hormones in your brain, allowing you to feel satisfied and relaxed. Maintaining a healthy physique will also enable you to have better self-esteem. Having the stamina and discipline to perform daily exercises will also allow you to work more efficiently on the demands of everyday life. Even a few minutes of walking will help you to reduce stress.
Balance your life
Balancing your life entails a good sense of time management. This skill is usually not inborn, but rather has to be learned gradually and turned into a habit. By finding the right time and place for every activity, you’ll decrease the chances of having to face impossible deadlines and conflicting schedules.
Staying organized and keeping up-to-date with different tasks (even at various levels of completion) is a great way to keep things from spinning out of control. It’s also recommended to separate tasks depending on whether they are errands for your work or your personal life. Managing daily tasks will give you more time for yourself and your loved ones. In short, time management balances your life.
Talk to friends and family
Stress can sometimes feel like a “mine-only problem”. It feels like an ordeal that you alone have to face. However, this can lead to unhealthy cycles of lower self-esteem, depression, anxiety, and nervous breakdowns.
To mitigate the levels of stress in your mind, make sure to talk about it to people who care about your situation. Reaching out to friends and family during stressful situations can help you gain fresh insights into your problems. This can also give you time to shift your focus to other things.
Get a hobby
Spending your recreation time doing a hobby is a great way to release stress. By doing an activity that you are genuinely interested in, you’ll be able to experience a phenomenon called “flow”. This is an altered mental state, wherein the individual can lose track of time as they devote themselves to the task at hand. On top of that, this focus is often effortless, which can give you enough cognitive opportunity to allow the flow of creative ideas.
Practice relaxation techniques Performing relaxation techniques that you can do within the comforts of your room or office is a great way to relieve stress right away. If you feel overwhelmed and you still need to finish a task, a quick relaxation break is a great way free your mind so it can handle the stress.
In a limited space, you can do coherence breathing and/or yoga, which regulates the blood flow in your brain and throughout your body. The best thing about these exercises is that you don’t need equipment or special help from someone else. You can simply put on your earphones and search for a meditation guide on your phone to help you through the relaxation process.
Get enough sleep
When there are too many tasks to deal with and it seems impossible to finish them for the day, don’t force yourself. Allow your mind and body to rest and relax by getting enough sleep. Doing so will allow you to recharge and gain energy for the next day. Sleep also allows you to process certain problems with your subconscious thoughts.
Bond with a pet Bonding and cuddling with your pet can greatly reduce your stress and anxiety levels. Human evolution has made it so that your brain is hardwired to release oxytocin whenever you spend time with your pets. This neurotransmitter has been found to induce positive emotional states, relieving stress.
Go on vacation
A change in scenery and new positive experiences is one of the best ways to get rid of stress. Buy a ticket to your favourite destination, go on the road for a few days, or book a room at a local resort for a staycation. Whichever you choose, you should also consider unplugging and turning off your mobile phone, laptop, and other devices so you can focus on resting.
Visit a therapist or counsellor
When things are too rough and these self-help relaxation techniques can't help, you should consider visiting a psychotherapist for counselling. With their stress management intervention, they'll be able to provide a more holistic solution in helping you deal with daily stressors. Make an appointment immediately and take the first step towards better stress management.
For stress reduction training and intervention, call Shlomo Radcliffe & Associates to book an appointment with a trusted psychotherapist. Dial (289) 801-4133.