We all have our go-to expression when it comes to being stressed out, and I wouldn't bother naming all of them since they vary by individual, and people are creative beings! But when it comes down to it, I think that it is how we work or even relax that triggers stress. Ever been stressed even when you're well relaxed and bored? I know I have.
Since "Error! Hyperlink reference not valid" is unavoidable in life, it is important to find ways to decrease and prevent stressful incidents, and decrease negative reactions to stress. Here are some ideas for habits to create to reduce stress.
1. Manage Your Time
Time management skills allow you more time with your family and friends and possibly increase your performance and productivity. Here are some tips to reduce your stress with time management.
Focus and concentrate, delegate, and schedule time for yourself.
Keep a record of how you spend your time, including work, family, and leisure time.
Prioritize your time by rating tasks by importance and urgency. Redirect your time to those activities that are important and meaningful to you.
Manage your commitments by not over-committing or under-committing. Don't commit to what is not important to you.
Deal with procrastination by using a day planner, breaking large projects into smaller ones, and setting short-term deadlines.
Examine your beliefs to reduce conflict between what you believe and what your life is like.
2. Build Healthy Coping Strategies
It is important to identify your coping strategies. One way to do this is by recording the stressful event, your reaction, and how you cope in a stress journal. With this information, you can work to change unhealthy coping strategies into healthy ones. You'll be able to focus on the positive and what you can change or control in your life.
2. Make a Lifestyle Plan
Some behaviors and lifestyle choices affect your stress level. They may not cause stress directly, but they can interfere with the ways your body seeks relief from stress. Try to ....
Balance personal, work, and family needs and obligations.
Find your sense of purpose in life.
Get enough sleep, since your body recovers from the stresses of the day while you are sleeping.
Eat a balanced diet for a nutritional defense against stress.
Get moderate exercise throughout the week.
Limit your consumption of alcohol.
3. Seek Social Support
Social support is a major factor in how we experience stress. Social support is the positive support you receive from family, friends, and the community. It is the knowledge that you are cared for, loved, esteemed, and valued. More and more research indicates a strong relationship between social support and better mental and physical health. Seek out those who support you, your lifestyle and beliefs. Give support freely, and take it!
4. Change Your Thinking
When an event triggers negative thoughts, you may experience fear, insecurity, anxiety, depression, rage, guilt, or a sense of worthlessness or powerlessness. These emotions trigger the body's stress, just as an actual threat does. Dealing with your negative thoughts and how you see things can help reduce stress.
Thought-stopping helps you stop a negative thought to help eliminate stress. When a negative thought enters your mind, take an action such as pinching yourself, lightly tapping your head, touching your toes or anything similar. Let that action be a cue to STOP those negative thoughts!
Disproving irrational thoughts helps you to avoid exaggerating the negative thought, anticipating the worst, and interpreting an event incorrectly.
Problem solving helps you identify all aspects of a stressful event and find ways to deal with it.
Changing your communication style can help you communicate in a way that makes your views known without making others feel put down, hostile, or intimidated. This reduces the stress that comes from poor communication. Use the assertiveness ladder to improve your communication style.
Take steps today to reduce your stress.
Make it happen.
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