With growing work and competition in life, people tend to get stressed easily. Haphazard lifestyles and abandonment of proper habits have increased the amount of stress on adults and children alike. Thus, it has become necessary to understand and implement ways to manage stress properly. And so, I’d like to bring to you a guide to manage stress properly. Let us dive further into 10 stress management techniques.
But before we do that, do understand that there is no absolute way to completely be free of stress. One must take into account that some types of stress are healthy, and thus, one cannot eliminate it entirely; they can only learn to ‘manage’ it properly. So without further ado, let us understand the techniques to manage stress.
10 Stress Management Techniques: A Mini Guide
Stress is actually a good thing. It is like a defense mechanism of our body, which enables us into ‘fight or flight‘ mode, depending on the situation. Stress ensures that one does not procrastinate excessively; somewhat like a gentle push which we require in certain cases. But it is important to control stress properly. Otherwise, stress will quickly deteriorate our health and prove to be detrimental.
As a result, people need to understand stress management techniques and carry them out accordingly. Now, there are many ways to deal with stress, however, the basic outline remains the same.
1. Understand your limits
Before doing anything, one must understand their capacities and themselves properly. Ask yourself: How many hours can you work a day? How much can my brain absorb? What are my energy levels? Am I able to cope with my schedule? Is it possible for me to complete this before the deadline? Then, accordingly, you must create changes. Everyone has differences in their limits. But, you should be aware of the factors responsible for your stress, then slowly make it disappear. Find ways to counter it ( I’ll be getting to this shortly ).
Most people try to push themselves past their capacity, in order to achieve what they want. We fail to understand that it is not worth the mental pressure. You will achieve it eventually, my friend. Just make sure that health comes first, no matter what.
2. Organize Yourself!
Organizing your work is just as important as recognizing your limits. Unorganized work life/ pending work is a major contributor to unhealthy stress. To deal with stress, sort out your work.
– Learn to prioritize
Finish the important duties first, less important ones in due time. Whatever work is of utmost importance and requires to be done first; you should attend to it. You can do all the small, less important duties later when you are not under pressure of greater duties. Make a list of all your work and then sort it out accordingly.
– Cut down the unnecessary jobs!
Cut it down! Don’t do something which you really don’t require to waste your energy on. Remember to save your energy to finish off the necessary jobs before they turn into stressful situations.
– Manage your time properly
Time management is necessary for a nice, stress-free life. Learn to manage your time! Utilize enough time to complete your work, but make sure to save some up for other destressing activities too. Sketch out a schedule to aid yourself. A person who is able to manage their time effectively succeeds in life. 👌 You can check out my article about time management for further details.
– Be assertive, say NO
Some people aren’t assertive enough. As a result, they take on excessive workload despite knowing that they can’t deal with it. Yes! Simply because some of us can’t say ‘no’, we drown in work and stress. I am this type of person, and yes, it becomes quite troublesome later. So say no, kindly, of course, 😂 and don’t exceed your limits. You will be fine, then.👍
3. Exercise Daily
Keep your body physically active, it helps to manage stress. There are various exercises which increase breathing control, relieve stress and anxiety. Thereby, such exercises not only ensure stress relief but also ultimately makes a person fit and immune. Yoga is one such form of exercise that is a capable stress reliever. Yoga poses such as Anjali Mudra, Sukhasana, Marjaryasana are some of the best poses to try out if you feel stress or anxiety.
When we hear something stressful or anxiety-inducing, we unconsciously inhale sharply and hold our breaths. This breathing pattern activates our flight or fight mechanism aka the nervous system. As a result, for relaxation and breathing control, people practice Pranayama. It involves breathing smoothly, thus changing our breathing pattern. This causes the activation of our ‘relaxation response‘ which helps to manage stress and reduce anxiety. However, this is possible only if we practice it properly, so make sure to get it right. Another option is meditation.
– Activate Your Body
Keep yourself active, don’t make yourself lousy and lazy. A fit body, as I said above, is one step further to a healthy state. And a healthy body is always a welcome feeling, am I right? It will benefit you greatly.
4. Eating Habits
Keep yourself healthy, my friends. While eating a balanced diet is obviously necessary, there are some food items which help to reduce stress. Look out for items which induce serotonin and reduce cortisol. Some good examples are oranges, almonds, avocados, milk, asparagus, etc. These are some of the many food items which help reduce stress. In my opinion, a glass of fresh orange juice or any other citrus juice helps to refresh and energize me. But make sure it is fresh juice and no the one with added sugars. 😕
– Water, lots of water
When you are stressed, your heart rate goes up and your breathing becomes heavy. This causes dehydration. So, it is important to make sure you are always hydrated and at your best. It will also help to avoid fatigue, headaches and nausea package. Besides, drinking water has many other benefits besides helping you to manage stress!
5. Get Rid Of Your Addictions!
Yes, that’s right. One of the most important things to do is to get rid of all the harmful stuff. Often, people tend to focus their stress into bad, addictive habits which deteriorates their health instead of helping them. There are various other ‘healthier’ alternatives which we can always try.
– Kick the Cigarette on the butt
Smoking and drinking are the most common channels for people to focus their stress on. When people get stressed, they smoke. They drink. If they continue to be stressed, this habit grows larger, eventually engulfing them. In large quantities, alcohol acts as a depressant and a stimulant in relatively smaller qualities. Similarly, nicotine in cigarettes is also a stimulant which elevates your stress. Thus, it is not advisable to take them as they are harmful. Instead, moderate your habits, or get rid of them entirely. If you feel it is absolutely impossible to stop, try to get the help of health centers and such. These two habits are anyways not advisable, so it would be all the better to get rid of it or avoid them from the beginning. I know you can do it!
– Avoid Coffee or Sugars
Caffeine and sugary items mainly cause a sudden disruption in your mood and energy. Cutting down on these will help you feel relaxed and sleep better than before. Drink water instead, it will refresh you far better and also some added benefits of good smooth skin! 😉 And like I said, fruits are always a good alternative for sugary products.
6. Hobby Cultivation
This tip is connected to the previous one. Instead of taking out your stress in harmful ways, try to focus it all into doing something you like. Unless that something you like is smoking or drinking, then refrain from following this sentence. 😂 Hobby cultivation is one amazing and useful way of channeling that pent-up stress without affecting yourself negatively.
Some really good hobbies are :
- Drawing or Painting
- Building something
- Training your pets
Drawing is one hobby I use to manage my stress and anger. I draw whenever I am stressed with studies or angry about something. And yes! It 100% helps, not only with cultivating my hobby but dealing with this stress. Try it out!
– Listening to music
Another good option is listening to music. Try listening to relaxing tunes or albums. I find classic and Jazz extremely calming. Besides that, I also enjoy listening to the sounds of birds or nature while I’m sleeping. You can try out some of these if you wish.
- Raflum – Melodies Of The Forest And Springs
- Sophie Hutchins – Wide Asleep
- Raflum – Guī Zhào
- The Best Of Yiruma
- Ghibli Jazz
- Kai Engel – Nothing Lasts Forever
Of course, our tastes may differ, but there is no harm in trying these out! 😄
7. A Goodnight’s Sleep
Ahh, who doesn’t like sleeping? Well, I do, and it is very much needed by us to cope with stress. It is an important part of our life, just like eating. However, due to the stress of work, most of us fail to meet the required amount of sleep. So make sure to sleep at least 8 hours a day.
– Avoid thinking about stressful factors
Hours before going to sleep, avoid doing anything stressful work. Try to relax as much as possible. Avoid drinking coffee or even tea. Take a warm, refreshing bath, eat your dinner properly. After that, lie in your bed and try to tire your eyes. Keep your mobile or anything work related away. Maybe, read a book or listen to some relaxing music to help. Focus on sleeping. Do not take any medication to help you sleep.
– Correct your biological clock
Don’t mess up your biological clock. Make sure to sleep at the same time every day. That way your body will accept this time as your bedtime and you will automatically fall asleep at this hour every day. Try not to sleep too late, I know it can be hard to follow this, but you will have to try. It took me a while, however, I finally fall asleep roughly around 11 pm every day and I get a good 8 hours of sleep.
8. Laugh More, Smile More
Yes, laughter is the best medicine to manage stress and anxiety. There is no better solution to stress than laughter! It relives your physical tension almost 45 minutes after you are done laughing. It reduces your stress hormones, boosts your immune system and protects your lovely heart. Laughing releases the good old endorphins aka the feeling good hormones. Socially, it helps to defuse tense situations, strengthen relations, etc. In other words, it is the best bumper package which you had all along!
Try to smile more every day, watch comedic shows and be a happy, jolly person. Furthermore, it would be best to laugh more with your friends and family, hang out with them. There is a good chance of something hilarious happening with others than when alone. And this brings me to our penultimate point.
9. Express Yourself!
These techniques are effective and all, but the most effective one would be exercising yourself to close ones. Often, people tend to bottle up their stress and emotions which worsens your mood and mind. Instead, get together with friends and family and relive your stress. Perhaps they have better and far more effective solutions to your stressful factors, so hear them out! Remember, there is no better source of solutions than your family itself. Help is always closer than it seems. Apparently, my family taught me some tricks to destress which I couldn’t find on any website or blog. So that’s good, right? Communication is the key here. You just have to open the lock.
10. Golden Rule: Nip It All In The Bud
Last, but not least is my ultimate point. It is more of a golden rule you should live by. Although not applicable in all aspects, it is a useful advice.
Nip it in the bud.
That’s right, don’t let your work pile up, don’t procrastinate something which you can finish off easily. If you solve it right when it is small, it probably won’t end up being a big contributor to your stress. If you are particular in your work and studies, it will pay off later. Remember that, and you will be a happy, less stressed being.
So in a nutshell, just remember to :
- Understand your limits
- Organize yourself
- Exercise properly
- Eat well
- Avoid bad habits
- Cultivate your hobbies
- Sleep well
- Laugh harder
- Express yourself and
- Nip it in the bud! Don’t procrastinate.
You see? It is not hard to understand. Yes, it takes time to manage stress properly, however, in the end, it is worth the efforts as it has multiple benefits. Have a positive mindset and you will be able to cope with stress very easily. So before I conclude this article here is a quote for you.
It is not stress that kills us. It is our mindset towards it. Stay positive and believe in yourself.
1. What ways can you suggest to deal with stress?
2. Do you think we need stress in our lives? Why?
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