Stress has become an inevitable part of everyone’s life. The kind of stress that drives you to achieve your goal and get something done can be considered acceptable. But the kind that only damages your health is a real cause of concern. It is essential to deal with it at the right time and in the right manner. There are various techniques to manage stress that one can adopt in their day to day life and live a healthy and fulfilling life. However, you cannot dismiss these techniques after just one trial. In order to eliminate unwanted stress from your life, they need to be followed patiently and persistently.
Practical tools and techniques to manage stress in your day to day life
1. How to manage stress in life - Don’t be a procrastinator
“Times of stress are also times that are signals for growth, and if we use adversity properly, we can grow through adversity”
- Abraham Twerski
The more we postpone things, the more it piles up at a later stage. It is better to complete one thing each day over the next ten days rather than having to do ten things in one day. The more you procrastinate, the more it adds to your stress. It then gets difficult to focus on any task in its entirety. We may be doing one thing, but our mind will be stressing about all the other things that are yet to be done. Thus one of the essential techniques to manage stress includes to quit being a procrastinator and start getting things done.
Moreover, don’t just focus on getting things done; focus on getting it done well. If anything is worth doing, it is worth doing well. Let that be your mantra. This will motivate you to get your things done in a timely and efficient manner. It will also allow you to avoid undue stress caused due to procrastination.
2. Stay physically active
“In times of great stress or adversity, it’s always best to keep busy, to plow your anger and your energy into something positive”
- Lee Iacocca
Lethargy further adds to your stress. When the mind is empty, it becomes a feeding ground for stress. We tend to overthink about things without having the will to do anything about it. Just indulging in needless thinking and worry helps no one. In fact, it only adds to your stress and takes away your peace of mind. If you have a tendency to behave this way, then one of the best techniques to manage stress, in this case, would be to get physically active.
There are several things you can do. Go for a brisk walk, exercise, run, jog, or play a sport. Anything that keeps you physically active and busy. Anything that will take away the laziness and lethargy that consumes your body and mind. You can also indulge in creative hobbies like gardening, cooking, or playing a musical instrument. These are just a few common things, and you can choose to do anything that you like. Whatever helps you to get yourself out of your bed or couch and get going.
3. Techniques to manage stress - Take a break
“Just because we are in a stressful situation, doesn’t mean that we have to get stressed out. You may be in the storm. The key is, don’t let the storm get in you”
- Joel Osteen
One of the most important techniques to manage stress will always be to take a break. Even if you are on a tight deadline, working under undue stress may affect your outcome. It is always better to work in a balanced state of mind. For that, it is essential to take frequent breaks and rejuvenate yourself.
A few suggested techniques to manage stress in this regard would include going for a walk or light stroll in a park or garden. Drink water or have a fruit. Avoid caffeine and cigarettes which seem to be the most popular methods of taking a break. It does nothing magical to manage stress. In fact, it may provide you a temporary escape, but once you get back to work you are back to square one when it comes to stress. What is proven to be more rejuvenating and a great stress buster is spending time in nature, hydrating yourself with water, eating healthy snacks, and even a light stroll.
4. Let it out
“Set peace of mind as your highest goal, and organize your life around it.”
- Brian Tracy
Releasing is the first step towards healing. The more we store our stress inside our system, the more it builds up. Such built-up negative energy can burst at the wrong place and at the wrong time. Hence regularly release this built-up stress and let it out. All techniques to manage stress focus on letting it out. If you have to do something, get it done and get it over with. Learn to deal with situations, not run away from it.
Letting it out also helps in reducing your burden. Sometimes the solution to your stress just involves sharing your burden with someone else. If you are swamped with work, do not hesitate to ask for help. Sometimes the cause of our stress is because we ourselves want to do everything. That may not always be possible. Instead of keeping stress trapped in your system, just let it out and see what happens. Release it in a healthy way. Don’t pass on your stress to someone else. Focus on eliminating stress, not on disseminating it.
5. Other techniques to manage stress - Learn to relax
“Sometimes the most productive thing you can do is relax”
- Mark Black
Lack of proper relaxation is largely responsible for unwanted stress. When we fail to relax, we can turn any normal situation into a stressful one. So the most effective techniques to manage stress actually include learning to relax and take it easy. When we burden our minds with stress, we can’t seek solutions. This only adds to stress, rather than take it away. Conscious relaxation is an integral part of stress management.
As you learn to relax, learn to focus on your breath. Practice breathing exercises or pranayamas while you’re relaxing. Relaxing does not mean to turn on your lethargy mode. It is important to consciously relax, in order to gain the maximum benefits of relaxation. If you find yourself too distracted and unable to relax, consider seeking a life counseling session. It can help you with your emotional well-being, which in turn can help you to learn conscious relaxation and reduce stress in your life.
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