In today’s high-paced, high-pressure world, stress often seems unavoidable. As we race from place to place and multi-task, endlessly plugged in and connected through mobile devices, phones, and laptops, it’s no wonder we feel overtaxed and anxious. However, even if you can’t avoid stress, there are steps you can take to manage its effect on your well-being.
- Recognize that everything is temporary. What seems urgent today may not seem so important tomorrow. Prioritize the things that are truly important to you, and remember: your feelings of anxiety are temporary, too. A vital part of overcoming anxiety is realizing that the negative feelings you’re having will pass, and you can overcome them.
- Find ways to self-soothe. Practice deep breathing, positive self talk, meditation, or relaxation exercises; experiment until you find what works for you, and you’ll be able to calm yourself effectively. Discover ways to calm yourself in the moment, and look for ways to reduce your overall stress level. For some people, yoga might work to reduce stress, while for others, journaling may have a calming effect.
- Watch your diet and exercise. Caffeine, alcohol, cigarettes, and recreational drugs may seem like an appealing solution to stress, but in reality, they only temporarily mask the issues and can increase anxiety. Eating a healthy diet can give you the energy to face whatever is causing you stress, and exercising can release endorphins to help improve your mood.
- Get enough sleep. Many of us are sleep deprived, and sleep deficit is difficult to counteract. However, recent studies indicate that losing sleep can increase your feelings of stress, anger, and sadness, so it’s important to make sure you’re getting the proper amount of sleep.
- Practice gratitude. Dwelling on your problems is self-defeating, and a negative attitude is sure to bring you down. Accept that some things are beyond your control, and notice all the things that go right for you each day. Keeping a gratitude journal is one good way to begin to change your attitude and reduce your stress.
- Build a support system. One of the best way to handle stress is to talk to other people— preferably face to face. Your network of friends and family can help you to gain fresh perspective, and connecting with other people will refresh and renew your spirit.
- Simplify your life. Identify sources of stress in your life, and see which ones you can eliminate. Pare down your to-do list, and find ways to delegate. Limit your screen time, and make a conscious effort to spend time outside, in nature.
No matter what is causing your stress, you can find ways to manage it and live a healthier, happier life. At our clinic, we work with our patients to determine underlying causes of stress and illness, in order to help them live at their optimal wellness levels. For more information, or for a free consultation, call us today!