Are you dealing with a lot of emotional stress? Is it affecting you physically or mentally? If so, it is time to stop dealing with your stress, and start taking action to reduce it once and for all.
Even though stress is common, that doesn’t mean it is normal. There is a reason doctors ask if you are stressed when you go in for other ailments – because of closely linked stress is to your physical and emotional health.
The first thing you can do to help reduce your stress is to start daily rituals, which include various habits that are good for your mind and body.
Focus on Getting Good Sleep
Sleep is integral to being a healthy, energized, well-adjusted person. However, it can also deeply affect the amount of stress you have. Not sleeping will only worsen if you have a good deal of stress. You may struggle to fall asleep or get quality sleep because of your stress, causing sleep deprivation and more stress, and the cycle continues.
Stop the cycle now by first focusing on getting good sleep, whether that means shutting off your phone at night, starting a new nighttime routine, or trying natural sleep aids. That should hopefully help reduce the daily stress you are dealing with.
Eat Nutritious Foods
You probably already know that a healthy diet is essential for weight management, reducing your risk of heart disease and stroke, and even preventing diabetes. It can also be tremendously helpful if you deal with daily stress.
You can’t always do much about the stress that hits you daily from unexpected sources, but you can reduce it and help manage it by eating a healthy diet of fruits and vegetables, lean meats, healthy fats, whole grains and fibre. A well-balanced diet provides the nutrients your body and mind need to handle stress as it comes.
Go Outside Whenever You Can
Being outside is wonderful for your mind, body, and spirit. You will get both fresh air and vitamin D for your body, which is really important to help reduce your stress levels. In addition, being outside can bring you motivation and inspiration, help you relax and unwind, and allow you to be in nature and understand that the things you are stressed about are really not that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things.
Eat outside during your lunch break, take your dogs on an extra walk, and play in the backyard with your kids. There are so many ways to spend more time outdoors, and your stress will be naturally reduced each day as a result.
Trade-in Your Coffee for Tea
Unfortunately, caffeine will make your stress worse as it can increase the stress hormone cortisol and your blood pressure. If you drink a lot of caffeine from coffee or soft drinks, now is a great way to reduce it. You don’t have to give it up completely, but try switching to tea for at least one of your cups of coffee each day. Then, gradually increase how many low caffeine or no-caffeine beverages you have that are replaced with caffeinated beverages. Then try to stick to 2-3 cups of coffee per day max.
Often caffeine hits in after about 6 hours, and you get more alert and active. So if you drink a cup of coffee at 6 pm, you will feel more alert around midnight. Especially when you don’t sleep well, don’t drink coffee late in the afternoon or at night.
Reduce Technology and Social Media
Have you ever noticed that your stress is worse on days when you spend a lot of time on Instagram or Facebook? This is because social media rarely has good news. Most of the time, it causes stress, whether from the latest tragedy in your city or state, political or religious debates or just drama with people you know in your life or that you work with.
Social media can be toxic and doesn’t help someone who is already dealing with a lot of stress. So now is the perfect time to start cutting back on using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and any other social media sites you frequently visit.
Have a Nighttime Self-Care Routine
Self-care is amazing for you and can help you relax each day. If you have a lot of stress at work or home, give yourself a few minutes every evening that is just for you. Listen to calming music, meditate, practice mindfulness, write in your journal, draw or paint, take a bath, or do anything that relaxes you and helps you feel at peace.