While stress management tips are everywhere, there are some tried and true methods to help manage stress that have been touted by professionals for years. The following are the top ten.
10. Eat better. There is more to this than dieting. Pay attention to the carbohydrates you eat. Overly processed carbs give energy but cause a crash later. This can cause anxiety and stress. Whole grains offer slow, steady energy that makes you better able to handle whatever may come your way.
9. Get enough sleep. Our bodies are designed to deal with physical stresses while we sleep. They rejuvenate and repair themselves, hard at work while we are snoozing away. If we are not getting enough sleep, this rejuvenation is not happening, leaving us weak, tired, and poorly equipped to manage stress.
8. Remember it could always be worse. One of the most powerful methods of stress management is realizing what others are going through. When a situation has you stressed, consider its importance in the grand scheme of things.
7. Do not neglect the power of positive thinking. Instead of delving into negative emotions when a stressful situation arises, think about how you can fix it. When you look back on the day, evaluate it based on the positive things that happened rather than the negative.
6. Take a break. Giving yourself just a few minutes to take a walk, listen to a favorite song, or simply close your eyes and clear your mind can have a huge impact. The few minutes away from dealing with whatever the situation may be will be worth it to experience increased productivity and to protect or improve your health.
5. Exercise is an excellent way to manage stress as it is not only good for our bodies, but it triggers our brain to produce chemicals that make us feel good.
4. Learn to say no and let go. Clear out physical clutter, eliminate unnecessary activities, and create a clean slate with some room to breathe.
3. Tackle difficult tasks first. You will do better after having had a good night of sleep, and you will be able to look forward to getting them over with rather than dreading doing them.
2. Schedule time to do something you enjoy. Write it on your calendar and keep it, whether it be having coffee with a friend or reading a novel for 15 minutes.
1. Laugh and laugh often. It is proven to reduce stress hormones, and it is fun. Read the funnies, watch sitcom, or keep a joke book handy. Laughter really is the best medicine, and an excellent way to manage stress.