Stress is a killer. It can shut down your immune system, and according to the American Psychological Society, can cause you all manner of irritability, stomach problems, headaches, fatigue, anxiety, depression, and social withdrawal. Apart from anything else it isn’t too much fun. It lowers your mood, and makes everything seem like a damned hassle. Here are eight ways to reduce stress in your life:
Give Yourself Time Out
In today’s super busy society, full of competition and timed deadlines, it is no wonder that so many people fall victim to stress. You may not be able to switch off in the middle of work, but what you should do is make the most of your time outside of it. Learn to give yourself time out simply to relax. You could take a nice hot bath, or a casual stroll in the park.
Disconnect From Media
In order to give yourself time out from work, social issues, and the problems of the world, you will need to disconnect from media for at least a short amount of time everyday. Give your brain a rest. An easy way to reduce stress is to switch everything off an disconnect from your phone and laptop for at least an hour before bed, and an hour upon waking. You will feel much fresher for it.
If you are seriously stressed then you are going to need some serious pampering. Pampering gives you some much needed time to treat yourself, and treating your body well can alleviate the physical symptoms of stress. Consider getting the tension ironed out of you with a massage, or relax on a spa every now and then. Aromatherapy is also very good for stress relief.
Eat Healthy Food
A healthy body is a happy body, and a happy body gets stressed far less easily. Junk food can lower mood, and has even been linked to depression, so avoid it for an easier life. Fatty foods also affect the cardiovascular system, amplifying the effects of a stressed body. Healthy, nutritious food on the other hand, keeps you stress free.
Exercise is great for mental clarity, helping to keep away stress, but it also releases endorphins in the brain, which improve mood. It improves general health too, which also reduces stress. You can get exercise in any way that you please, whether it be yoga, jogging, boxing, or walking.
For some people stress will never go away until you know you are organized. This does not necessarily mean completing everything that needs to be done, but relates more to knowing that you are on top of the tasks of life. Some stress reducing ways to get organized include tidying your home and work environment, making a to-do list, and keeping track of your finances.
Meditation has been shown to reduce stress, and this is true on a basic level because of the increase of oxygen flow into the body, which helps it to function well. Conscious deep breathing brings in more air, and also allows access to a deep relaxing state of consciousness. Meditation can be practiced for just 10-15 minutes a day with great results.
Get The Right Amount Sleep
One of the biggest reduces of stress is sleep. Too much sleep can lead to lethargy and sluggish feelings, whilst too little can make you irritable and cranky. Try to find the right balance for yourself. If you are feeling particularly stressed, you may need more to sleep it off.