Dealing with stress seems more complicated than it is. By taking strategic steps, you can deal with stress more easily than you think and feel calm and happier more quickly. In the end more tips from other stress experts!
Tackling stress – it does not matter
Stress will disappear over time, but you do not have to wait until the stress disappears by itself. No, you can deal with stress better so you can feel calm and happy now.
# 1. Plan your week strategically and cleverly
Dealing cleverly with stress means better planning. This is very simple and logical. Because you know – stress reduction takes as much time as building up stress.
If you work around the clock, you are building stress. If you then hardly take time to recover, the stress does not reduce sufficiently. This makes for trouble.
To avoid this, plan conscious moments of recovery. Take a few minutes to make a schedule. It’s important that you make room for these four anti-stress tips .
The 4 anti-stress tips
Sleep as long as you need to feel equipped. Make getting enough sleep a priority. And if you’re into it, take a nap every now and then. A quarter of a nap will do miracles for your stress level. If you sleep well enough, you can avoid a burnout. Simple.
A great way to ‘burn’ stress. Do a solid workout at least once a week. Regular running reduces your chance of burnout, for example, by 50%. That’s not bad when you realize how little effort it takes.
Take 10 minutes daily for meditation. Even better: 15 minutes before your day starts and 15 minutes before you go to sleep. It keeps your brain calm and gives you a healthy base from which to meet your day (and night).
Make sure you do not do anything for a whole day a few times a month. Take a day to just do what you want, without obligations. Plan it consciously, because such days usually do not happen by themselves. Play and be lazy. Work is prohibited on days like this.
And you know what’s fun? These four habits help you handle stress and make you more successful, creative, happier and productive.
You are human – not a robot. You cannot always work and always be productive. These simple habits help you function better as a human, in all areas of life.
# 2. Make your problems small and tangible
The smaller your problems, the less stress they give you. Do not wonder how to finish that huge project in a short time. Just ask yourself: “What is the next little step I can do?”
Perhaps the answer is to make a plan. Good. Grab a cup of tea and sit back to plan. No more.
The smaller you make your problems, the easier you will be able to solve them and the less stress you will have. That’s the gap of the little step.
# 3. Perspective
The bigger and more important we make ourselves and our work, the more stress we experience.
Better dealing with stress means taking yourself, your work and your life less seriously. You realize your work is important, but other things are more important.
What kind of things?
- Your relationships.
- Your health.
- The extent to which you enjoy your life.
- Time spent with your children
- Making a positive contribution.
The point is: if you are constantly stressed, you are not making a positive contribution. Maybe you are at work, but your life is more than your work alone.
Your stressed attitude is like poison for your happiness, your health and your relationships; things which are more important than your success or income.
Learn to put things in the right perspective. Money, success, status, fame, popularity, winning, etc. – those things are fun. But they are not everything. They are not the purpose of your life. Ultimately, they do not bring you the satisfaction you’re looking for.
This does not mean they are bad or that you should not pursue them. It means you put things in perspective.
# 4. Do one thing that everyone forgets
Yes. And that’s playing. If you want to handle stress better, then you have to play. I mentioned it already in the 4 tips, but I’ll repeat it. Most people do not take play seriously.
Playing is the counterpart of stress. By playing you can leave stress behind you. It helps you recover quickly. Why? Because you are having fun.
When you play, you do things that have only one purpose: fun. Because you like it and find it interesting, fascinating or funny, not because it helps you become more successful, richer, cooler or more efficient.
And doing things because they’re fun – that’s something we often do not give ourselves once we’re grown up. We dive into worklife and discover that being productive and efficient helps us achieve our goals. But in the meantime, we forget that having fun is still important.
So go play. When you take playing seriously, dealing with stress becomes easier than you’d ever hoped for.
You do not have to “recover” by being sad in a holiday park with a bad book. No. Jump on a trampoline, play tennis, play tag, do cartwheels in the park. Have fun and feel the stress melt like ice cream on a hot summer day.
Tips from other stress experts
1) What’s your best tip for someone who wants to relieve stress?
The most important thing you can do to reduce your stress levels is to get lots of rest. Practice good sleep hygiene and try to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Set a consistent bed time each night and stick to it. Avoid screen time just before bed, and eliminate all sources of light from your bedroom while you’re sleeping. A good sleep is the first step to recovering from adrenal burnout and helping your body to cope with stress more effectively.
2) What’s the biggest (and most common) mistake that you see people making in regards to relieving their stress?
The most common mistake made by people under chronic stress is to not reduce their caffeine intake. When you drink caffeinated beverages like coffee, tea, or energy drinks, your body enters ‘fight or flight’ mode. This further depletes your adrenal glands and HPA axis, and puts your body under extra stress. You should consider either giving up caffeine entirely, or switching to low-caffeine drinks like decaf coffee or green tea.
Fawne – AdrenalFatigueSolution.com
Learn to quickly identify when pressure is turning towards stress by being aware of your signs and symptoms. Notice if you get a headache, tension in your back or neck, feel frustrated or irritable, or have trouble sleeping. When your body feels out of balance, ask yourself what needs to shift. Do you need to decrease the demands on your energy or increase your capacity by taking better care of yourself. This short assessment may help you identify areas to adjust.
Second, build in recharge time regularly, whether you need it or not. The more you invest in your own energy, slow down and notice what’s good in life, the more positive the lens will be through which experience challenges.
Putting a band aid on stress by pushing it away, hyper focusing on work, staying overly connected to technology, or using numbing agents like caffeine, alcohol or unhealthy foods to cope. These all stress the body even more, causing long term damage to the brain and body.
Learn to Shift Your Stress at out our Global Stress Summit: http://bit.ly/stresssummit
“Your energy is your most valuable resource – invest wisely.”
Heidi – Stress.org
As a generalisation probably finding a good work/life balance
Giving up the things they do for themselves; they feel they haven’t time or energy for everything and these are the easiest to let go, but it’s what keeps the emotional batteries recharging
Debbie – YorkshireStressManagement.com