April is stress awareness month! The perfect time to reset & reflect on ways to better manage and deal with daily stressors that impact so many of us. Stress is unavoidable, whether it’s a deadline at work, financial concerns, or family drama, we all deal with stress every now and again. The point isn’t to completely eliminate stress, it’s to learn how to manage it.
In this article we are going to breakdown 5 excellent stress management techniques so you know how to take care of yourself, even when challenges arise!
So many of us work office jobs that require staring at a screen for most of the day. If it’s not always staring at a screen then it’s being in and out of meetings, and using our brain power for 8 hours or more! Not to mention, a long and tiring commute that can come along with work. A lot of this can put stress on the eyes and mind. One of the best things you can do is unplug for a few hours a day.
When you get home from work, try to put your phone away and truly relax. Make a good meal, light a candle, take a bath, read a good book, or spend time with loved ones. These are excellent ways to give yourself the break you deserve.
Exercise doesn’t just benefit the body, it benefits the brain too! Moving your body pumps up endorphins which are the brain’s feel-good neurotransmitter. Many people report changes in their mood, tension in the body, and better sleep.
Some of the best stress-busting activities include: yoga, walking, pilates, running, kick boxing, and tai chi.
When we’re stressed, many of us reach for junk food as comfort food. Things like sugar, fried foods, and carbohydrates might provide pleasure in the short-term, but definitely leave the body feeling more lethargic in the long-term. Some of the best foods to eat for stress are whole foods that contain abundant amounts of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients.
Leafy greens, fatty fish, berries, oysters, and even dark chocolate contain essential nutrients to help brain health and the body.
TALK IT OUT
Keeping things bottled up is never a good idea. It’s amazing what leaning on a friend, partner, or family can do for stress levels. Talking things out makes such a difference because it means you no longer have to carry the weight and burden yourself.
If your stress and anxiety seems out of control, speaking with a licensed professional can also be a good idea. One amazing website where you can find therapy at a lower cost is BetterHelp. This website offers a number of therapists based on what your needs are.
Quieting the mind is one of the greatest tools that we can learn. Meditation is one of the best ways to do this. Although it can be a challenge to sit still and focus on breathing, it’s a skill that takes time to practice and definitely pays off. Guided meditations are one of the best ways to help with stress and so many of them are available on an app called Insight Timer!
Practice these stress management tips with consistency and you’ll be sure to notice a difference in how you respond to external factors. Your body is always trying to look out for you by giving you signs, if you feel chronic stress, chances are you should really slow down. Take care of yourself because you deserve it!