10 Ways To Manage Stress
Stress is a part of our daily lives. Every day we face numerous challenges in our lives no matter what we do from a housewife to the CEO of a company every person in his or her position has to deal with stress. Stress comes and goes in our lives on regular basis but it can take over us if we don’t take actions. Luckily there are many ways in which we can cope with our stress and keep it to the minimum. Here below are 10 ways you can deal with stress.
Top 10 Ways To Manage Stress – Deal with Stress Easily :
1. Avoid Caffeine, Alcohol And Nicotine – reduces stress level
You should avoid the use of nicotine and drinks that contain caffeine and alcohol. If you cannot avoid it at least reduce it to the minimum you can. Nicotine and caffeine are stimulants and they increase the level of stress instead of reducing it.
Alcohol on the other hand is a depressant if it is taken in large quantities and it acts like a stimulant when taken in small quantities. Hence using alcohol to alleviate stress will not help you.
Instead of alcohol and caffeine try to drink water, diluted natural fruit juices or herbal tea and keep yourself hydrated as it will help your body better in coping with stress.
Avoid the usage of refined sugars which is found in many manufactured foods even in foods like bread or salad dressings. As these sugars can cause energy crashes which can make you feel irritable and tired.
All in all try to eat food that is healthy and nutritious and keep your diet balanced.
2. Indulge In Physical Activity
The level of stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline increases in your body under stressful situations.
These hormones in our body are the fight or flight hormones which are hard wired in our brains through evolution and are designed to protect us under threat from any kind of immediate bodily harm.
However in the modern age the stress that we face is hardly remedied by fight or flight. Physical exercise can be used instead to metabolize excessive stress hormones and bring your mind and body back to a more relaxed and calm state.
If you feel tensed or stressed try brisk walking and get some fresh air. You should also try to incorporate any kind of physical activity in your daily routine. This will help you to deal with stress as when you exercise stress hormones decrease and your body releases endorphins which are the natural happy hormones. And exercise will also make you sleep better.
3. Get More Sleep
Lack of sleep plays a significant role in causing stress. On the other hand stress also plays a role in interrupting our sleep as your mind is constantly whirling with thoughts stopping you from relaxing and falling asleep.
Instead of gulping down sleeping pills to make yourself sleep try to do your best to relax yourself before you go to bed. Make your bedroom a place where you can relax and remove anything from there which can cause you stress. Don’t drink caffeine or excessive alcohol during the evening, if you know that this can cause disturbed sleep. Several hours before you go to bed stop with any kind of work that is mentally demanding so that your brain gets the time to calm down. You can also do some light reading or take a warm bath to relax yourself before you go to bed and forget about the things that make you worried.
Go to bed around the same time every evening so that your body and mind gets used to a predictable bedtime.
4. Try Relaxation Techniques
Try to relax using a stress reduction technique every day. There are many techniques to reduce stress which have been tried and tested. So you can try to use some of them and see which one works the best for you.
For example you can try using self hypnosis which can be done easily and you can do it anywhere even in your car or at your desk. A very simple technique is to try and focus on one word which means positive to you, like love, peace or calm. You can also use a self affirming mantra like “i deserve relaxation in my life”. Once you decide a word or phrase focus on it and if your mind starts wandering or thoughts start coming in your head simply disregard them and return to focus on your word or phrase. If you start to get tense again just keep repeating your word or phrase silently.
If you don’t start to relax at first do not worry. Relaxation is a skill and you need to learn it and you will get better with as you practice more.
5. Talk To Someone
Talking to someone about your feelings can be helpful.
It can help you by either distracting you from the stressful thoughts or by releasing some of the tension by discussing it.
Stress can make you not see things clearly. When you talk and discuss things with your friends, colleges or even with a professional, you may be able to find the solutions for your stress and get your problems in a perspective.
6. Keep A Stress Diary
Maintaining a stress diary for a couple of weeks is a very effective tool for managing stress. It helps you to become more aware of situations that cause stress for you.
How do you maintain a stress diary? All you need to do is note down the time, date and place of every stressful episode you have. Also jot down what was it that you were doing, who were you with and how did the situation effect you both emotionally and physically. You should also rate every stressful episode on a scale of 1 to 10, this will help you to understand the things that trigger your stress and how you react in them. Then you are in a better position to understand what stresses you, how to avoid it and if you can’t avoid it then how you can cope with it.
7. Take Control
Problems that seem to be impossible to solve can trigger stress. Learning a way to find the solutions to your problems can help you to feel more in control of your situations and therefore will lower your level of stress.
One technique to solve your problem is to write down your problems and then come up with as many solutions as possible. Write down the pros and cons of every solution and then choose the one which seems the best. Write down the steps that are needed to be taken as a part of your solution such as what needs to be done, how will you do it, when to do it, who will be involved and where will it be done.
8. Manage Your Time
A common factor that causes stress is our daily to do list. Sometimes our daily routine things can overburden us. The first step in managing this factor is to accept your capabilities; you must make yourself realize that you cannot do all the things at one time. Make a list according to the priority.
Note down your tasks first than prioritize them. See and figure out which tasks need to be done by yourself and which ones you can delegate to others. Put reminders for the tasks that should be done immediately and make a record of the ones that need to be done next week or next month or whenever possible.
This way a list that once seemed unmanageable and stressful, by sorting it into smaller tasks which are more manageable and spread over a longer frame of time with a few completely off your list by delegating them, you make a list which is realistic and easy to do and moreover less stressful!
Remember to keep buffers for any emergency or unexpected tasks. And last but definitely not the least include time in your list for yourself when you can just relax.
9. Learn To Say “No”
Stress is commonly caused when you have too many things to do and too little time to do it. And even then many people still agree to do something for someone else. Learn to say “No” to these requests which are just an additional burden and this will help to reduce your stress level and may help your self confidence.
Learning to say “No” needs first the understanding of why is it difficult for you. For many people it is difficult to say “No” because they always want to help, be nice to others and want to be liked. Others have the fear of conflict, missed opportunity or rejection. Just remember all these barriers are self create.
You may not want to respond to a request with a blunt “No” in the beginning so think of a few phrases that will give the message gently. For example
“I’d love to help, but….”
“I’m busy today, why don’t you ask me ….. ”
“I am sorry I cannot commit, I have my priorities right now”
10. Rest If You Are Ill
If you are not well you do not have to carry on with your tasks. You need to rest. If you stress yourself you will make yourself worse, on other hand resting will make you recover faster.
Marry Jojo is a Freelance writer and blogger. She provide excellent health and tech reviews for Top10BestPro