No matter how much we try to avoid it, stress seems to always find a way of creeping up on us. Demanding work schedules, deadlines, assignments, and relationships may feel unbearable and overwhelming at times, and stressing out only further impedes our ability to be productive. Stress can feel daunting, but you don’t have to let it defeat you. Here are some strategies to help you de-stress and establish a healthy relationship with life’s demands.
Writing is a great way to rationalize your thoughts and help you cope with high-levels of stress. When under pressure and feeling overwhelmed, it is easy to get lost in your own thoughts and let the stress take over. Writing out any negative thoughts and feelings will help release your pent-up emotions and clear your mind. After, read over what you’ve written down and try to take an objective stance. What is rationale and what is irrational about what you felt? This may help you gain a new perspective on what you’ve been stressing over.
- Take a Walk
Walking outside is another great way to de-stress. Even if it’s only for a few minutes, try getting some fresh air and taking in what nature has to offer. Removing yourself from a stress-induced environment will help you declutter your mind and refocus.
Sometimes we just need to take a break from our phones- and that’s OK! Being constantly contacted via email, text and social media is stressful and keeps our minds on high-alert at all hours of the day. Turning off your phone and closing your computer will give you more time for yourself and also help improve your sleep patterns. Getting a good night’s rest is another great way to de-stress- as it will help boost your immune system so that you can combat the day’s stressors.
Stress induces high-levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, to be released throughout your body. As a result, your heart beats faster and your blood-pressure rises, creating feelings of panic and sudden uncontrollability. Taking slow, deep breaths will help lower your blood-pressure and slow down your heartbeat by triggering your parasympathetic nervous system to take action. This will help relax your body and allow you to regain control over your body’s reactions to stress.
Whether it be running, doing yoga or playing sports, exercising is one of the best and most effective ways to tackle your stress. Exercising keeps your body’s cortisol levels low and helps release endorphins throughout your body, which are hormones that help naturally boost your mood. This is also a great way to lower your blood-pressure and keep your heart healthy!