It happens to most people at one point or another - the pressure of work, family, school or all of the above creates enormous pressure and stress. Unfortunately, this stress can become an obstacle for getting through the day, leading to reduced productivity at work, poor performance in school or irritability around friends and family. What's worse is that ongoing stress can lead to other health problems in the long run, including hypertension, obesity and insomnia. If you want to stay healthy and live a happier, less stressful lifestyle, it's best to start fighting off stress as soon as you see it coming. Here are a few handy tips to help you relieve stress and get on with the more important things in life.
1. Use your time wisely:
For many people, feeling like they are overbooked or running out of time to complete their tasks can be a major cause of stress. Be proactive in avoiding these situations by keeping a detailed organizer with you at all times. Keep appointments, meetings and other activities clearly marked so you have plenty of time to be prepared and avoid feeling overwhelmed as things pile up.
2. Stay positive:
It's easy to let stress lead you down a road of negativity, or possibly even self-pity. However, dwelling on those negative feelings only make your stress worse, so focus on staying positive. Set realistic goals for yourself to start managing the things that are causing stress in your life, and allow yourself to feel good when you achieve them.
When things start to get really stressful or overwhelming, sometimes it's helpful to simply shut out the world for a while, even if it's just for 10 minutes. Try meditating to calm your mind and relax your body. Sit in a quiet room and think of only your breathing, making sure you take slow, even breaths. You'll feel your stress start to melt away quickly with this technique.
4. Get plenty of sleep:
This is often a difficult technique for people in these situations because they may find that their stress is keeping them up at night. Skipping out on the needed time for rest is an unhealthy habit, leading to added fatigue and potentially even more stress. That's why it's so important to get at least 7 or 8 hours of sleep per night. The solid rest will help you feel ready to face the next day and tackle whatever is stressing you out. Try meditating or drinking non-caffeinated tea if you need help getting to sleep at night.
People dealing with stress may feel worn out as it is, but it's important to make that extra effort to get some exercise if possible. The physical activity can work up healthy endorphins which will naturally relieve some of the stress you feel. Exercising regularly can help you get a better night's sleep as well. There are even exercise routines you can perform just about anywhere, even work.
6. Eat healthy:
If you have a poor diet, you may be lacking the energy and vitality you need to tackle the issues that are causing you stress. The healthier you are, the better you'll be able to deal with these problems as they arise. Also think about ways to eat healthier aside from healthy foods to add to your diet.
Getting a massage is a great way to get rid of some serious stress. During your session, focus on letting your muscles relax and try to avoid thinking of the things that are stressing you out. Let the massage invigorate you and allow you to better deal with the things that seem to be causing any stress.
8. Maintain strong relationships:
Many stress-relief techniques are achieved on your own, but that doesn't mean you can't look outside for help as well. Reach out to supportive friends and family members when you're feeling stressed, even if it just means giving them a quick call on your lunch break or sending a text message to a loved one. Connecting with these truly important people in your life can be a great source of relief.
9. Just say no:
When someone's work-life balance gets out of whack, it often leads to a lot of stress or even guilt. There may be times when you have to say no to something in order to make sure you maintain a healthy balance in your life. Although work, volunteering and other important projects shouldn't be ignored, it's important to make sure you keep some time set aside for the things you truly love, whether it's playing with your children, taking the dog for a walk, sewing or even playing video games.
If you find that these techniques do not help to relieve your stress, seek professional help to discuss other possible treatments to help you feel better. In some cases, medication may be prescribed to help deal with certain types of stress associated with depression, anxiety and other conditions.