No one will be completely stress-free throughout their lives, from financial tension to work-related worry. Although everyone has heard how a certain level of stress is beneficial and even inspiring, excessive stress is never a positive thing and can harm one’s health and well-being.
Anyone, whatever their sex or gender, can be debilitated by stress, and in severe circumstances, it can prevent you from living a fulfilling, happy life. Those who identify as female will also encounter new pressures and stressors not shared by men.
When dealing with stressful conditions that affect your mental health daily, it’s crucial to understand you’re not alone. You may wish to consider receiving professional support for stress management or a clinical diagnosis of a stress disorder and its necessary treatments.
Check out these at-home stress management methods before or in addition to getting professional help.
If you’ve been feeling overwhelmed by anything and everything going on in your life, see if you can pinpoint it to one or two major stresses. Is your job requiring you to work long hours lately, forcing you to put off your housekeeping and let it pile up? Do you and your partner argue more than usual, creating conflict in your home and relationships?
Identifying the source of your stress can help you change your response and get to the source of your stress, and hopefully, reduce it.
Talk to your manager about restructuring your schedule if your career is causing you to lose track of your work-life balance. If you and your partner are fighting, set aside some time to chat.
Modify Stress Responses
While some stress is natural, your body’s response to stress may not always match the situation. For example, if the notion of ordering take-out makes you anxious, it could be your body’s overreaction.
If you notice yourself becoming concerned over something that doesn’t necessitate an unduly stressful response, try to alter your thoughts and behavior.
If your heart is still pounding many hours after opening a distressing email, remind yourself that the stressful moment is gone and you no longer have to be in fight-or-flight mode.
Do Things You Enjoy
Doing activities that we enjoy and make us happy does not have to be limited to weekends or vacations. If you’ve been experiencing high-stress levels recently, consider working out, talking with friends, trying out a new restaurant, or attending a concert.
If it’s been more than two weeks since you did anything that makes you joyful, aim to include more of such activities into your daily schedule.
Spend Time Outdoors
Staying at your workplace or home will not help relieve tension, especially if your job or chores stress you. Studies have proven that being outside where you can move your body, breathe fresh air, and be in nature will help you relax. If your stomach is churning or your mind is racing due to stress, go outside for a few minutes to calm down.
If possible, schedule 30 minutes daily outside for exercising, walking, gardening, reading, and other activities.
As previously stated, you do not have to deal with your stress alone, especially if it interferes with other aspects of your life. You can see a professional mental health therapist or healthcare provider for stress management and to unload or outsource some of the more minor duties that may stress you out.
For example, if the thought of preparing supper at the end of a long day makes you so anxious, consider meal planning for the week ahead during the weekend or using a meal delivery service. Or, if a specific work assignment is causing you stomach problems and keeping you awake at night, talk to your manager about potentially unloading it or getting help with it.
Determine three stressors per week that you may delegate or offload.
Meet Your Loved Ones
Being around your family, a friend, or other loved one can sometimes be all you need to get through a particularly stressful situation. With someone who understands and cares about you, you can be your true, authentic self, and they can remind you of the things that matter that doesn’t cause you stress.
Make time to phone, video chat, or see a loved one at least once a week.
Limit Screen Time
It is important to take some time away from screens daily, especially if you work on a computer. Scientists are only now beginning to understand the influence of blue light projected from screens on people’s emotions and mental health. However, the connection between light and mood has long been known.
Take up or resume a hobby that does not require you to gaze at a screen every night, such as reading, stitching, athletics, or painting.
Move Your Body
Exercise has long been proven to release endorphins, boost happiness, and improve overall life satisfaction. If you’re stressed out, consider working out twice a week. This can help you de-stress from work and home, particularly if you exercise outside or at a gym.
Get out of your chair and exercise your body a few times weekly by walking, running, swimming, or doing yoga.
When to Seek Help for Stress
The information in this article is not intended to replace professional advice, diagnosis, or medication for other mental conditions, including depression or chronic fatigue syndrome. If you have more questions or concerns regarding your condition, it is best to consult with a mental health specialist or a trained healthcare provider.
You should seek professional help if:
- You’re suffering various physical stress symptoms, like headaches, weight fluctuations, sleeping troubles, or digestive disorders.
- You are always overwhelmed or tense.
- You have difficulty concentrating or completing tasks.
- You have insomnia or sleeping problems.
- You’ve resorted to unhealthy coping techniques, such as binge drinking.
While there are numerous signals that it’s time to seek stress relief, those mentioned above are just a few of the symptoms that may suggest you need help.
We all know that the best way to keep your body healthy is by eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and getting enough sleep. But what if you’re also dealing with some physical pain? Or perhaps you’re feeling moody and anxious? Prevention has got you covered in these situations—with articles on how to manage and cope with common health issues like migraines or stress-induced heartburn.
And for those looking for more permanent solutions to their problems (like weight loss or depression), Prevention has got you covered there too—with articles on the causes of many common health conditions and how they can be managed with lifestyle changes.
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