Stress is a normal part of life. But when bouts of panic and anxiety start to become overwhelming, it can be a real issue. With these stress-coping techniques, you can be on your way to a more peaceful, less-stressful life.
1. Regular Exercise
Regular exercise is a natural way to combat everyday stress. Experts from the Mayo Clinic say regular exercise can boost our feel-good endorphins and help melt away our daily stress-related distractions. Additionally, forms of regular exercise like hitting the gym or taking outdoor walks can improve our mood and strengthen our self-confidence. In fact, people who regularly exercise experience lower symptoms related to anxiety and depression.
While committing to a regular workout plan can seem overwhelming at the beginning, experts say to walk before you run, and start small. By building up your fitness routine slowly over time, you decrease your risk of injury or overdoing it. The Department of Human Health and Services recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity per week, which includes exercises like swimming or walking.
2. Sleep Hygiene
Lack of sleep is a growing issue in America. According to the National Sleep Foundation, one-third of American adults say they do not get enough sleep. For many people, a combination of stress and insomnia is the cause. Both can disrupt sleep and negatively affect our mood. Studies from around the world have linked stress to insomnia, including a study from Sweden that found connections between a stressful work environment and insomnia as well as a survey of college students in the U.S. that found stress from family life and academic pressures resulted in a higher risk for insomnia.
Luckily, there are a variety of ways to combat these two sleep disruptors. Sleep experts recommend focusing on something called your sleep hygiene. Sleep hygiene, a behavioral and environmental practice developed in the late 1970s, is made up of a series of different factors, including your sleep space or bedroom.
Sleep experts say to make your bed comfortable and supportive and suggest removing external light that could potentially be disruptive. Of course, you can practice good sleep hygiene by adding a new, comfortable mattress to your bedroom and installing light-blocking curtains for a restful, less stressful night’s sleep.
3. Organization at Home and Work
Oftentimes, the clutter and messes around our workspaces and home go unnoticed — and many people wouldn’t think disorganization on its face is commonly linked to stress. However, Sherrie Bourg Carter Psy.D., writing for Psychology Today, says clutter can be a significant source of stress in our lives.
Consider that clutter bombards our minds with excess stimuli, ultimately causing our senses to work overtime. In fact, clutter consistently signals to our brains that the work is never done. And, clutter is distracting. It pulls our attention away from what we should be focused on. So, if you’re having trouble relaxing, both mentally and physically, it might be linked to clutter.
Don’t stress out — there are solutions to help to declutter your professional and personal spaces. If indeed clutter is a problem for you, experts say to discard — either by throwing items in the trash, donating goods to charity or taking it to a consignment shop — anything you no longer have a need for.
To a Happier and Healthier Life!
No matter who you are, there are many sources of stress in our daily lives. Luckily, there are ways to combat it, too. From regular exercise and sleep hygiene to organization at work and at home, these methods can reduce stress for a happier and healthier life.