10 Ways to Reduce Stress
I have to admit, lately, I have been pretty stressed out and I promised you all that I would never lie so unfortunately that is the truth.
The reasons behind the stress are not all bad. It’s mostly that I am at that point in my life where all of my friends are getting married and having celebrations and the cash has been a little tighter than normal and the emotions have been running wild with everyone.
However, I do have this one situation in my life, and normally I like to keep it upbeat and positive on here but I am going to share a little bit because I want to be open and honest.
Have you ever had something, someone or a situation in your life that just constantly drains you? Like you can’t possibly see anything positive about it anymore and whatever decision you make someone in the situation either won’t like your choice or will be upset?
You have to take a step back and think, do I choose to let go and move on with my life? Do I stop trying to make everyone else happy and focus on myself? Do I continue to struggle to keep it alive so feelings don’t get hurt and no one is upset?
Well friends, that
is was my current dilemma.
After years of stressing over this situation, today I simply decided to put myself first and chose to remove the stress from my life.
It was one of the most difficult decisions I have ever made because I never want to hurt anyone, but it wasn’t a healthy situation for me anymore and was causing me endless amounts of stress.
After realizing the damage this stress was causing, I put together a list to help me reduce my stress.
I wanted to share this list with you because if you are or aren’t going through something similar, everyone should find ways to reduce whatever kind of stress is in their life.
Below are my top ten tips for reducing stress:
- Manage your time: Believe it or not, having little routines can help lower stress. It doesn’t have to be the same thing every day but when your day is planned out it helps keep you on track and makes you feel accomplished when everything is done. Also, developing habits can increase productivity.
- Be prepared: If you don’t have to think, your anxiety can be less likely to just pop up. Think about it. If you have your gym bag or work clothes ready to go, you can just grab and go. It not only saves time but having a plan and being prepared will allow you to focus on other things. If you prep your meals, that is even less to think about in the morning.
- Focus on what you can control and accept what you cannot change: This was a game changer for me which circles back to putting yourself first. Once I learned how to focus on what I had control over and what I wanted to achieve, my stress levels reduced and I had more determination and drive to reach that next goal. As for other situations, learn that you can’t control the storm but you can be prepared for it. You can’t control or change other people but you can control yourself and your actions. You can’t control someone’s decision but you can control how you react and what your next step is. For example, if your boss makes a decision that doesn’t sit well with you, you can choose to follow along or make a change. Catch my drift?
- Laugh and Enjoy life: It is OKAY to slow down and breathe a little. Sometimes you just need to unwind. Maybe go to a comedy show, watch a funny YouTube video, or just go outside on a nice day and relax. Whatever you choose to do, do it for yourself.
- Organize: When you “de-clutter” your brain and your space you tend to be less stressed. A messy area can make it difficult to relax and can remind you that there is work to be done. If you take 15 minutes, 2-3x’s a week to clean, make lists, put things away, prep, etc., I have found that a clean space can reduce your stress and anxiety. I call this micro-organizing and it works like a charm.
- Realize you can’t please everyone: Don’t be afraid to say no. Sometimes saying no to a situation can be the best thing for you. This goes back to putting yourself first and removing negative vibes from your life. If you stop giving people to control over how you feel or what you do, you will not only feel a lot better but you will be less stressed about upsetting others. Plus you will be making yourself happy. Remember, it’s your life, not theirs. If they can’t respect your choices, maybe it’s time to let go and move on.
- Exercise!: Walking, jogging, strength training, stretching, etc. all help your body release stressors and produce endorphins and as our friend Elle from Legally Blonde says: “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy”…you know the rest. Basically, happy people feel better about themselves and are less stressed. So get moving.
- Create a vision board: When you can actually see the big picture, you can figure out the steps to get there. When you create a vision board you are laying out the stepping stones to reach all of your new concrete goals and dreams. This can help take the edge off your stress. Seeing everything planned out helps you see the way to get what you want.
- Change the way you think: When you practice self-love and putting yourself first, you will find that you feel free. I know it can be scary, because you will have to say no at times and may have to try new things but it will be worth it. When you talk positively to yourself, you start to believe and have a positive outlook. Stress will take a backseat because your new outlook will blow it away.
- Sleep: Yeah, you knew it was coming, but there really is no way around it. Not only does lack of sleep affect your physical health, but it can contribute to overall increased stress and anxiety. If you don’t have a great night of sleep, you can always schedule a quick power-nap. Ask my friends, I schedule a nap at least once a day to refresh my mind and body and to help with my productivity levels. 😉
So, let’s review.
Here is my little 10 ways to reduce stress cheat-sheet:
I can’t wait to see you all next week with your new positive, stress-free vibes.
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Also, comment below and tell me how this post helped you overcome the current stress in your life.