We all have days that are considerably more challenging and stressful than others. Don’t you agree? Even seasons in the year… with sports, schools, kids, certain times seem to have a higher level of stress than others. And we all know that unfortunately, stress is hard on both the mind and body.
Too many high stress days can really take its toll. And what’s worse, you could even become so used to being in this “high state of alert” that you start to feel like it’s normal. That’s NOT normal and not right. Don’t let this happen to you. We know stress can affect your work, your relationships, your health, and ultimately your happiness in life.
It’s important to develop some techniques that help you relieve stress and strengthen your self-soothing abilities. How to deal with high stress? When you’re struggling to stay calm, relaxed, and focused, try some of these strategies:
- Breathe deeply. Breathe in for 5 seconds through your nose and hold it for 5 seconds. Now exhale for 5 seconds through your mouth. Do this 10 times and focus only on your breathing. These breaths should only be slightly larger in volume than a normal, relaxed breath.
- Take a walk. Practice the breathing technique above during your walk, focusing on your breathing, walking, and surroundings. Nothing else should enter your mind. If your mind insists on wandering to non-productive thinking, you might have to simply keep repeating, “Taking a step” to yourself over and over. “Taking a step. Taking a step. Taking a step.” It almost is rhythmic.
- Get some exercise. Any time of day is a good time to exercise. Comfortably tired is what you’re looking for. Work out your frustrations by going for a run or swim. Hit the weights and show them who is boss. Any exercise will do as long as there is some intensity involved. Shuffleboard isn’t going to cut it. Even taking that walking to a high intensity, start out slow with that meditative breathing and then take it up a notch!
- Sit outside. A little time at the beach or park can work wonders. I always love to take a break from working inside to taking my laptop outside on the patio believe it or not. Find a relaxing spot with pleasant scenery. Enjoy the fresh air around you. Pay attention to what’s going on around you and keep your mind off your challenges. For me, the simple change of scenery is enough to relax me, but don’t work if it’s not letting you release some stress. It doesn’t take a whole lot of time outside. Even as little 10 to 15 minutes can greatly reduce your stress.
- Take a day off. Everyone needs a break once in a while. However, on your day off, it’s important to avoid just sitting around and brooding about all of your current difficulties. Take your mind off of things and have some fun. Lose yourself in activities that you enjoy or do things to make yourself feel good and be pampered.
- Find something engrossing to read. The ideal book would be able to take your mind off of things for a few hours. Ask your friends for some recommendations, or if you’re like most people, you probably have a couple of books on the shelf that you’ve never gotten around to. It will grab your attention and captivate you and take your mind off of what is stressing you. Now is the perfect time to read it.
- Listen to music. Again, it should be something engrossing that really captures your attention. Don’t be afraid to get up and dance; no one is watching anyway. I do it ALL the time! We ALWAYS dance around here…. either I do alone or with some of the fam. In fact, if you follow me in Instagram, you can often find my stories full of me singing and dancing in the car, better known as #CarCamJams!
- No phone and no computer. Turn off everything that connects you to the outside world. Then you can really relax. Stay offline for as long as you can. Yes, I know easier said than done. We’re all glued to our devices. But it’s SO refreshing when you DO unplug. I promise! And then, you’ll want to do it more and more!
- Take a nap. Ok seriously you guys. This is FOR REALS! There’s no better way to start over than to take a nap. When you wake up, it feels like another chance to start your day over. What happened before your nap is in the past! Now you can deal with it and move on. NEXT!
- Hang out with people that are fun. Get your tribe together! Meet for a drink. Have dinner with friends that always make you laugh. Grab your bestie and go get manis and pedis together! It’s easy to get caught up in our own little world. Being with others can jolt you out of that perspective. One place I can assure you you’ll get lifted up, inspired, and enjoy your time there is in my Lounge. If you haven’t joined, you really ought to! Check it out HERE.
Don’t let high stress get you down. The key is to actively do something about it. Some people develop a habit of being paralyzed when things start going sideways, but this does nothing to make you feel better or solve your stressful issues.
Be On Purpose about relaxing so you’ll be better able to tackle your challenges. Use my tips to minimize the pressure and anxiety you’re feeling and take control of yourself and the situation. How you deal with your challenges effectively is crucial to living the peaceful life you deserve.
Which of these are you going to try first to help reduce your stress?