Stress is a part of life. Especially nowadays, right? So how can you get stress relief throughout your day? What matters most is that you find what works best for you.
Here are 10 effective stress relievers that work whenever and wherever:
Breathe deeply (in through your nose and out through your mouth). Put one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach, just below the belly button. This will help you feel calmer and more grounded in yourself. It might take a little practice but it’s worth the effort to improve focus and enhance mindfulness.
Practice mindfulness – mindfully eating an apple, brushing your teeth, washing up before bedtime…whatever works for you! If you’ve ever had to be at work while getting over a cold or other illness, you know how difficult is to be productive or concentrate on anything. When you practice mindfulness, you are more aware of the present moment and what you’re doing, which helps reduce stress.
Do something nice for someone else — there is even research that suggests that kind of acts release endorphins in your brain! Volunteering also boosts mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical health – you’ll feel less stressed after helping others. Suggestions might include talking with a neighbor who can’t get out much due to illness, writing a thank-you note to your mom…whatever works for you.
Exercise or move around in some way — dance if it’s fun for you! Not only will exercise help decrease feelings of stress but it also releases serotonin and dopamine in your brain, which will improve mood and increase energy.
Pass the training. With the growing advances in technology, increased demands placed upon employees, and a more competitive market for goods and services, stress levels have been rising. In light of this information – it is important that if you are going into mental health coaching or wellness coaching you learn how to manage stress because it impacts every person’s life in some way or another.
Take a walk – get outside if you can! Get some fresh air and enjoy the beauty of nature…it’s therapeutic! And don’t forget to take your phone so you can take pictures of the pretty scenery for later when you get stressed at work or home. Or find a park bench if it’s too cold or hot to go outside.
Sing! Singing lets you connect with the power of your true self, empowers you to express yourself in a healthy way, strengthens your breathing, reduces stress hormones in your body, boosts immunity, and helps lower blood pressure (research has shown that people who sing live longer). If you can’t carry a tune in a bucket, do it at home and sing as loud as you want. Don’t worry about what others think.
Meditate or pray. When we meditate or pray, we focus our attention on something bigger than ourselves — our spirit, the universe, love…anything to take us out of ourselves and connect with something beyond ourselves that gives meaning and purpose to life. Do whatever works for you: sit quietly and breathe deeply; listen to soothing music; be grateful for all that you have; visualize yourself happy and smiling; repeat mantras (words/phrases) that resonate with your soul; see colors that make you feel calm and peaceful (I like pink and green); or imagine yourself in a safe place that gives you peace.
Take time to laugh and play. We all need ways to unwind and forget our problems for a while, like watching a funny TV show, reading an amusing book or magazine article, playing with your pet — whatever works for you! Laughter is truly the best medicine; it reduces stress hormones (cortisol), strengthens your immune system, elevates your mood, and has many other benefits as well.
Eat mindfully. When we eat mindlessly – i.e., we eat while working, watching TV, etc. – we tend to eat more than we intended and we don’t give our bodies the chance to register fullness. Research has shown that eating mindfully – paying attention to each bite, savoring every flavor and texture – can help you eat less without feeling deprived or losing pleasure in your meals. Eat nutrient-rich foods. Getting into the habit of eating better will ensure that you aren’t taking in empty calories. By fueling your body with healthy food options like whole grains lean proteins and fresh fruits and
Take a walk during break time at work. Once you’ve gotten up from your desk for a mid-afternoon stretch, take advantage of those few minutes by going somewhere different on campus or around the office building to get some exercise rather than just walking back to your seat. You’ll reduce stress as well as make a necessary trip to the water cooler!
So What Can We Do About Stress?
Being able to effectively manage your own personal level of stress will significantly impact your overall health. Stress is a leading factor in major health concerns today. It’s an unfortunate norm to be stressed out about work, family, friends, or any number of other frustrating situations that are all too common for us. The stress associated with these responsibilities can sometimes be so great that it starts to take a toll on our emotional and physical well-being.