Avoiding stress in the 21st century is quite the challenge. We’re still going through a global pandemic and even without that, there can enough things in our lives that cause us to be stressed — personal relationships, work issues, finances, etc.
Life can feel like a rollercoaster of things that affect our balance, which leads to us having less energy and being less happy than we can be. Just like avoiding stress completely, having control over the outer world and its chaos is impossible, yet we can do things to make sure our mental health will not suffer from the challenges of our daily lives.
There are regular habits that we can take to protect ourselves from stress.
What Is Stress?
Stress is the feeling of tension or emotional force. It can come from any event or thought that makes you feel frustrated, angry, or nervous. Stress is your body's reaction to a challenge or demand.
Stress plays a crucial role in our lives. Without it, we would not be able to stay energized and alert because it triggers a reaction to protect ourselves. The stress tells you to run or hide when there is a danger.
However valid it can be in dangerous situations, our bodies cannot tell a life-threatening condition from regular daily occurrences, like going to a job interview or arguing with a family member. Yet, we experience the same amount of stress as if anything causing us stress is the worst possible situation.
As a result, our body suffers significantly in cases that are completely safe and non-threatening. Because of that, we need to develop valuable and healthy habits of dealing with stress properly.
What Activities Help Relieve and Manage Stress?
There's a wide range of activities that can help you manage stress in different ways: calming your mind, your body, or both. Let’s take a look at what we can do to relieve stress.
Yoga is a group of mental and physical practices that originated in ancient India. It is one of the best ways to relieve stress. Not only does yoga help with stress, but it also helps you deal with anxiety, back pain, arthritis, and even constipation.
What makes it so great is the accessibility. You don’t need an expensive gym membership or costly gear. All you need is a mat, a rug, or a hardwood floor will do just fine. There are tons of yoga videos online that can help you get started.
The benefits of yoga include relieving stress, improving coordination, strength, balance, and flexibility. A lot of professional athletes include yoga in their training routine. Last but not least, you can incorporate meditation in your yoga session, which is also great for managing stress.
Even eight weeks of regular meditation have been proven to be effective for stress relief. Numerous studies have shown that meditation is an effective stress-management tool, ultimately reprogramming the brain to the extent that meditators have more capacity to manage stress. Consistently practicing meditation leads to it.
When we train our minds to be less reactive and more open, we can better cope when various stressors accumulate: work, family, money, or relationships. You can give it a go any moment — you only need a quiet space!
Exercising is known to cause your body to release endorphins, also known as the happiness hormone. It doesn’t just help us stay in good shape, it fills us with a sense of accomplishment. It doesn’t have to be a full-on hardcore workout either.
Just a few simple exercises, like push-ups or squats, will get you there. Of course, it is easier to grow your muscles in a gym with the help of a fitness instructor. But if your goal is to relieve stress in a healthy way both for your mind and your body, exercising is your go-to solution.
Give it a try, and don’t forget that exercise must make you feel good. You should stop if you start feeling any pain!
Dancing is a fun form of exercising and stress relief. As we already know, exercise is excellent for stress-relieving. What can make it even better? Put on your favorite playlist and let loose!
It engages your mind and brings on feelings of inspiration. Listening to the music from great times or events of your life triggers positive memories, suitable for forgetting about stress.
Not everyone feels comfortable dancing in public or solo, but that is fine. After all, we need to get rid of stress, not bring on even more of it. However, if you feel comfortable, dance like nobody’s watching, and don’t hold yourself back! Who knows, maybe this will help you reduce stress and become your new passion!
Distract Yourself With Your Favorite Book Or A Show
For some people, it is hard to get lost in a story when they are stressed, especially when it comes to reading. But putting on your favorite TV show, podcast, or movie that transports you somewhere else and can be a good distraction. It’s not simply a distraction, but making an active choice to place your attention elsewhere, away from the sources of stress.
You have to stop your mind from trying to solve problems and switch its focus on something else. It is straightforward and accessible because we binge all the time, so why not turn our daily dose of entertainment into something healthy and beneficial?
Choose What Is Right For You
All the activities mentioned above are great for coping with the stress of living in the modern world. Make sure you pick one that suits you best, find outlets, not on this list, or combine activities. Make it more meaningful and match it with your personality and lifestyle.
Coping with stress is a form of relaxation which you need to increase your energy and boost your endorphins. Remember, we are all unique and deal with stress in our ways. Stay healthy, and don’t let the stress take the joy from your life!
By James Weber
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