Stress comes in many forms and can be caused by many things. The first step towards feeling better is to pinpoint and identify the cause. That way you’ll lift the cloud of uncertainty and you’ll be able to confront the culprit head-on.
The worse thing you could do is turn to some unhealthy methods to help you cope, such as drinking, smoking or drugs.
When stressed, we find it hard to find a clear-cut solution to the real problem, and we really can’t be blamed for it. Stress is something each person deals with, in their unique way. In any case, not making a conscious effort to take control of the situation and going on “auto-mode” will only make the whole ordeal worse. That’s why the key to managing stress effectively is building a solid base of emotional strength, develop a clearer awareness of the situation so that you can better control it, a tight network of close friends and last but not least adopting a positive mentality.
What can you do to minimize stress
Here are the top 10 stress-busting tips:
Exercising will not magically make the stress disappear, however, it will reduce the emotional intensity you’re going through, clearing your head and enabling you to deal with your problems in a calmer manner.
Take control of the situation
Although it may not seem like it at first, there’s a solution to any problem. If you don’t take action, and you keep thinking that there’s nothing you can do about your problem, then things will only get worse. The feeling of lack of control may be one of the main reasons for stress and a diminished sense of wellbeing. The act of taking control is incredibly empowering and it’s the first step towards finding a solution that will be satisfying for you and not just to please someone else.
Surround yourself with people
A supporting network of friends, family members, and colleagues can ease the process of dealing with stress by helping you see things from a different perspective. If you avoid connecting with people, you won’t have the necessary support when you need help. The activities we’re involved in with our friends help us relax. They provide us with a sense of belonging, accompanied by a good laugh, which is one of the simplest ways to relieve stress. When you share your problems with a friend he/she may also help you find solutions to your problems.
Dedicate some time for yourself
In our modern world, people are leading busy lives and working long hours, meaning they don’t spend enough time doing things they enjoy. It’s vital for our mental wellbeing that we take some time for relaxation, socializing or physical exercise. You can set aside a couple of hours every day and do something that you enjoy, without stressing about work. By having a designated “me time”, you will become more energized and fresh, and ready to tackle any rising problems.
Set goals for yourself
Setting goals and challenges in any domain in your life, whether at work or outside, like learning how to play an instrument, learning a new language or a new sport, will help you build confidence. Confidence is the main “weapon” against stress. By continuing to self-improve and learn, you become more resilient as a person, both mentality and physically. When you accumulate knowledge, you’ll be more inclined to do things rather than stay passive, such as spending your time watching TV or playing games all day.
Eliminate unhealthy habits
In a state of stress, it’s very tempting to look for a quick fix. This is why lots of people turn to alcohol or smoking as a means of coping. Research has found that men are more likely than women to do this. Psychologists call it avoidance behavior. Women tend to look for support from their social circle. In any case, these short-term stress relievers won’t solve your problems, on the contrary, they’ll create new ones, such as getting addicted to them. The closest analogy is that of putting your hand in the sand as an ostrich does. It might give you some temporary relief, but the problems won’t go away. You need to rationally deal with the causes of your stress.
Help other people
Psychologists say that people who help others, through charity, volunteering or community work, are much more resilient than those who don’t. This is mainly because helping people who are in situations worse than yours will make you see your problems from an entirely different perspective and make them much smaller in comparison. The more you give to others, the happier you feel. If you can’t find the time to do volunteering work, you can start by doing someone a favor every day. It can be something as simple as helping someone cross the street or giving some money to a homeless person. This world is never lacking in acts of kindness.
Work smarter, not harder
What this means is you divide up your work into smaller tasks and then you start prioritizing the tasks that will make the biggest impact. You can leave the less important ones for last. Get comfortable with the fact that you’ll always have something to do. Working productively will make you happier and fulfilled.
Always look on the bright side of life. Look for the positive things that you already have in your life and be grateful for them. It’s very easy to not be appreciative of what you have. That’s why you need to make it a habit to remind yourself every day. Look at the glass as half full instead of half empty. Every day before going to bed write down 3 things that are going well for you and for which you are grateful.
Accept the things you cannot change
You can’t always change a difficult situation. Instead of thinking about the things you have no control over, concentrate on the ones that you do. If your company is having trouble making a profit and you’re among the ones who have to be let go to cut expenses, there’s no reason to blame yourself for it. In a situation like that, you must focus on the things that you can control, and that is looking for a new job.
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