Stress is plenty these days.
If it wasn’t tough to cope with it pre COVID, it is now. People are trying to grapple with the new reality at the same time struggling to maintain enough normalcy to live through it all. When we are overwhelmed , it is easy to lose sight of our goals and general happiness. This in turn might lead us astray, triggering the stress factor. Once it is turned on, it is hard to shut off unless we are aware it is happening and doing certain things to minimize resulting anxiety and panic attacks.
10 Simple Ways to Cope with Stress
In this post, I want to share 10 simple ways you can cope with stress. It doesn’t require any superhuman effort but some deliberate actions from your part to manage this inner turbulence effectively. I have written a ton of posts in the past on stress management but it seems like topics such as this are evergreen. People are always needing reminders and helping hand when faced with adversities and mental struggles. We all go through it in our life times. So let’s do it together.
1. Connect with people who care for you
Sometimes being smart is in knowing when to ask for help. Pick up the phone and call your best friend/ Mom/Dad/ Sister/Brother etc. Talk to them about what is bothering you and see if you can find solutions from the conversation. Or simply chat about anything under the Sun. Maybe what you need is a distraction from certain stressful situation and connecting with a loved one for a normal conversation might help.
2. Plenty of sleep
Never underestimate the power of sleep! Consider switching up your bedtime routine to include an earlier bedtime. While you’re an adult and may think “having a bedtime” is silly, believe me, this step to commit to going to sleep earlier will surely help those negative thoughts stay at bay so you can sleep.
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3. Get the Sunshine
Yes, a big one. The rays of the sun can do wonderful things to our minds and emotions. With the long winter ahead, your mind and body will probably be missing the sunshine a lot! but whenever you are gifted with a sunny day from Mother Nature, just take a walk outside or try to sit and enjoy the sun on your face for a few moments. One of the simplest way to cope with stress!
4. Daily Exercise
You don’t have to be a gym junkie or perform hard core work outs but set aside some time each day for body movements. Planks, treadmills, Yoga etc will qualify for this. While this is geared towards your wellbeing physically, trust me your mind also benefits from routine exercise. It clears off the toxins from your system, repair muscles and refresh your brain in no time. A great way to ease that stress.
5. Start a Hobby
Stress adds up when you are focused on stressing. That is all you think about. There is no room for anything else. Negative thoughts are programmed into a loop in your head and there is simply no way to get out. Unless, you start thinking a different thought. Feed your brain fresh meat. Something new has to take place where you can concentrate. Easy way to do this is to start a new hobby- collecting stamps, posters, hockey cards etc are the simpler ones. Or try learning a new language, musical instrument etc. If you are creative, do a book project, start a blog, create a course etc. These are more challenging in nature and you will see yourself steering away from stress. Because you have something much more interesting to focus on.
6. Stay away from Caffeine/Energy Drinks
Yeah, I said it. Coffee, pop and other energy drinks can quickly accelerate your stress levels. They put you on high alert without giving any break or downtime. And this is really not good when you are trying to calm down. So take them out of your consumption list and replace it with herbal tea to ease your anxiety. Chamomile and lavender are great for sleep too.
Fine, shoot me for saying it again. Meditate, meditate, meditate. It is when your heart opens, your mind becomes still and you start seeing clearly everything for what they are. Once you are aware, lesser emotions such as stress and anxiety has no place in your consciousness. You realize you are more than your ego and from that point, you are relieved from stress. It sounds easy I know but it doesn’t need to be difficult either. It is possible to get rid of stress that is weighing you down. Start familiarizing with yourself first. Use a meditation planner if you are new to this. Use mine 🙂
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Befriend outdoors my friend. This sort of tie in with point #3, Get the Sunshine. But it is not just about the sunshine, it is also about nature, a lot of it. Great way to get up close and personal with Nature is to go for walks whenever possible. Be outside, commune with trees around you and watch the flowers bloom.
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If there is a lake or an ocean near where you live, awesome. Take a stroll near the water and soak in the wind that feels like an embrace. Appreciate the earth you stand and know that you are an infinite being and everything is taken care of for you by the Universe. You will be okay. Don’t let that stress walk all over your life. You are much bigger than that.
9. Be Positive
This sort of goes without saying but stress and positive thoughts DOES NOT get along. So if you start courting positivity, you will feel the stress in you sulking away to the point of disappearing completely one day. Negative thoughts and negativity are quite draining. If you feel that you’ve become a negative person or have noticed that your view has become a bit more pessimistic than normal, try to change your line of thinking. A bit more positivity in your life can make you feel more energized as well.
10. Eat Well
This is so important. What you eat can affect you mentally. Eat a lot of junk food, you feel like crap. But if you eat healthy, it generally shows in your lifestyle. You are motivated, a go getter and knows good habits can lead to good life. You are good in managing stress because your body is in great shape since you feed it well. When your body is in a good place, your mind usually follows. See where I am going with this? Stick to good habits. Start with your diet. Introduce lots of green, brightly colored veggies, all sorts of lentils, protein and lots of water. You can’t go wrong there.
Those are my 10 (in no particular order) simple ways to cope with stress. I want you to know I have tried ALL of these tips (still do) and they work! A couple of things from this list I have started doing recently is daily exercise and be outdoors whenever I can. And I can’t begin to tell you how it is changing my life everyday. We all have stress in life but the trick is to paying no attention to it. When we focus on something a lot, that which we focus on increases. That’s a universal law.
I hope you are able to take away something helpful from this post in your journey to cope with stress more effectively and with grace.
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