Looking for ways to lower your stress levels? Check out these 9 stress management tips to help you cope better when faced with stressful situations.
Stress is all around us, and we cannot always control the circumstances that may be causing our stress. We can, however, learn to manage our stress better.
These stress management tips will not only help you manage your stress more effectively, they will also help you to cope better in stressful situations.
9 Stress Management Tips
Follow an Exercise Plan
Physical activity is the best tool to help manage your stress. The more you exercise, the more your body produces endorphins which, in turn, help lower your stress levels.
You need an exercise plan and a commitment to get healthy. You do not need to have hours blocked off each day for exercising. Try starting with just 30 minutes of exercise each day. Exercising at home tends to be the easiest way to stay dedicated when starting and new workout program.
You could even join a gym, sign up for a new class you have been wanting to try or get a personal trainer. Another thing you may consider is staying active with your kiddos. For example, you may run or walk around the soccer fields when they’re at practice or around the park while the kids play.
Get More Sleep
Did you know when you don’t get enough sleep it causes unneeded stress? It also causes your body to release a stress hormone called cortisol which, among other things, makes you hungry.
At times it can be difficult to get to sleep with all the things that are running through our mind, and we must find what works best for ourselves. Here are some ideas to try:
- Take a break from electronics for at least 30 minutes before bed.
- Before bed, take a warm bath add some lavender oil to the water.
- Read a book to relax before bed.
- Try to go to bed at the same time each night. This trains your body to get on a routine.
Manage your Time Better
Is your to-do list 100 miles long and growing? I know my to-do list used to cause me all kinds of stress, even just thinking about it. Start prioritizing your to-do list. I like to do the most important items first thing in the morning, that way, if your day gets derailed, you’ll have accomplished what’s most important.
To do this you will want to write all your “must-dos” in one column, the things you have to get done that day that cannot be put off. In the next column, I like to write a few “would like to do tasks.” These are things that need to get done in the near future but aren’t as important.
Once you have an exhaustive list of to-dos, go through them carefully and rank them by order of importance. Start checking them off based on their level of importance. You’ll be surprised how productive you are when you create a to-do list and action them in their order of importance.
Say “No!” More Often
We live in a world when we feel like we have to do everything that someone asks us to do. This causes huge amounts of stress in our life and bogs down our schedules tremendously.
I’ve got something super insightful to share….are you ready? Here it goes, simply say, NO!, more often. Try it with me now, say “NO!” ten times with convection and tell me how you feel. I promise you can do it, and it will become easier as you say it more often. Promise.
Make time for yourself
Making time for ourselves can seem daunting. We’ve got busy schedule, packed to-do lists and a number of people counting on us at any given time. But here’s the catch, in order to do “all the things,” we must “fill our own tanks” in order to have something to offer others.
Here are some great ideas of how to begin your selfcare:
- Keep a regular exercise routine.
- Get a facial or massage.
- Work on a craft project or picture album you’ve been putting off.
- Do something creative – it could be a craft or even a woodworking project, whatever feels good to you.
- Color in an adult color book – these things are really cool, and it brings you back to center, while remembering what it was like to be a kid and “color outside of the lines.”
- Get a regular mani/pedi.
- Watch a light movie – comedy is a great choice. Who doesn’t love to laugh?
- Go for a walk and take in nature.
- Try a new recipe in the kitchen.
- Take a bubble bath.
- Relax by the pool.
- Do yoga and/or stretch.
- Read a book that you’ve been excited about.
- Unplug from technology.
As we take the time to do something for ourselves, it relieves our stress and rejuvenates us, giving us the energy to keep going. I try to do something for myself every single day, even if it is a short 5-minute walk. It really sets a positive tone for my day. Looking forward to daily self- care and the action of self-care both help relieve stress and put a smile on our face. This is one of my favorite stress management tips
Keep a Positive Attitude
When you are more grateful for things that you have, you have better mental health and lower stress levels. Remind yourself to focus on all the things that you are grateful for. It makes a huge difference starting your day with gratitude. This turns your focus away from things that may cause you stress.
In case you’re at a loss for things to be grateful for, feel free to take some of these and try them on for size.
- Sunny Day / weather
- Your breath
- Opportunity to change, learn and grow
- An upcoming trip or vacation
- Time to care for ourselves & others
- Faith – in whatever keeps us whole
- Ability to walk, run, skip, jump and the myriad of other activities we so easily forget
When you focus on keeping a positive attitude and being grateful, you are able to cope better with stress, which is very empowering.
Eat well-balanced meals
Trade your sugary foods like sweets, soda, and carbs in for some better healthy options. Consider nuts, eggs, fruits, and veggies, lean meats, poultry & fish. When we eat food that’s whole and healthy, we give our bodies fuel that support uplifting moods and give us more energy.
As we eat more whole foods and less “food” that comes in packages and have 1,000 ingredients, we are more likely to maintain a healthy weight throughout our lives.
When your diet is poor, it is easy to “manage” your stress with emotional eating. Although this may cause temporary relief, it can also set you up for more stress long-term, as you deal with repercussions of things like obesity and obesity-related diseases. Start eating a more well-balanced diet TODAY. There’s truly no time like the present.
Giving yourself a brain break can help reduce your stress levels. Choose to live in the present, not worrying about the past or the future. Concentrate on your breathing and be grounded in the present.
Here are some ways that you can practice mindfulness:
- Take a walk.
- Unplug from electronics.
- Cuddle with your significant other, children or your pet.
When you are mindful, you are paying attention to your daily life and things that you may typically speed through. This is your time to actually slow down and focus on yourself and what makes you happy. When you practice mindfulness regularly, you will find that you are more calm and that your mind doesn’t wander to the negative as often. Keep working on it until it becomes a habit.
When in a stressful situation or when stress is getting the best of me, I turn to positive affirmations. These affirmations help calm me and lower my stress level so that I no longer feel overwhelmed by a situation.
In order for positive affirmations to be effective, you must believe your affirmations are true. Over time you’ll become more convinced and convicted about your wholeness, your gratitude and your self-confidence.
Try this. In the morning stand in front of the mirror and repeat a minimum of 5 positive affirmations out loud to yourself. It might seem a bit odd a first, but over time you’ll come to understand how important you are and how important it is for your to understand this simple thing, YOU ARE ENOUGH!
When a stressful situation arises, you can start repeating your affirmations, in your head or aloud if the situation allows it. These truths can calm you and give you the strength you need to move through, whatever it is, with an inner peace and outward grace.
Although this is certainly not an exhaustive list of ways to manage your stress, the hope is that you’ve been gently reminded how important you are and that there are strategies you can utilize to get through anything. You’ve got this! I know it!