Reducing stress for a healthier lifestyle

November 05, 2017
Had that overwhelming sense of stress and pressure? Exams, a new promotion, house, bills or something else. Whatever your current stress trigger, it is very important that you notice the effect it can have on your body and squash it before it takes over your health.

Personally speaking, perhaps the best way is to tackle stress is to face it, not run and bury your head it the sand like some oversized Dodo!  Below are some of the things I've genuinely found helpful, taken from experience and they may or may not work for you.

Before you read, if you're struggling, if you feel unwell, see your GP. You could also call the Samaritans* on 116 123 (UK).

Worn out and stressed

Take some time to notice the cause
There may be a multitude of reasons you’re feeling stressed, making it less easy to manage and overwhelming. I find writing out a list of things that I’m currently finding stressful is helpful, big and small. It’s my first step to addressing how it can be minimised or better yet, resolved. Stress can be fleeting but can also be long term. I’m no medical expert but I believe, from experience, the earlier you deal with it the better.

Stay realistic, let go of hypotheticals 
Some things are out of your control and sometimes that in itself is stressful. But you have to ask yourself is it helpful...worrying or stressing over something that you cannot change? Probably not. If stress is overwhelming right now, focus your energy on things which are in your control. What can you do now to make this better? Try not to lose yourself in the hypotheticals, you know that ‘What if..?’. Stay grounded, stay focused.

Use your support network
You’re Human! You can not and should not be responsible for everything! Sometimes it can feel like that though, especially if you’ve always assumed that role.

Hopefully, you already have a network of support around you, friends, family, work colleagues. Can anything on that list be shared? Can someone else handle that project for the next couple of weeks? Can someone else order the kids' school dinner, or pick them up from that club? I’ve listed some small things here but actually, I got to a point where the thought of sending an email was too much. Share out the small things and you’ll have more space to handle the bigger things.

Are you really 100% responsible for each? Reaching out to your support network will lighten your load. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness. In vulnerability there is strength!

Practice self-compassion

Speak to yourself with compassion, just like you would do a loved one or friend.
Acknowledging that it’s understandable that you feel stressed/anxious/sad/angry, is challenging but rewarding.  We can be too hard on ourselves. I don’t know about you but my inner critic has been a right biatch in the past. Why would I talk to myself like that? Why not treat me with kindness, understanding and respect too?

Self-compassion starts with ‘It’s understandable...’

Take care of you   

you matter woman t-shirt

*This charity is not affiliated with this post, we are just trying to be responsible and signpost to help if you need it. The Samaritans are a charity available 24/7 for whatever reason you may need

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