Stress is the number one killer in the country today. According to Wikipedia, stress can be defined as “the body’s response to a stressor such as an environmental condition or stimulus”. It is a method of reacting to a challenge. Stress may impose a good impact to the body, as it activates our fight or flight response therefore, it triggers us to make an unexpected act. But, if these stress triggering factors become so rapid, frequent and remain unresolved, it may pose a serious threat to physical and emotional health.
The most common causes of stress are job-related, relationships, financial issues and health problems. Also, a person is having a difficulty managing busy schedules.
The following plans will help you effectively manage and reduce stress.
1. Identify the sources of stress in your life
It is very important to assess the sources of stress in your life. Your officemates may be the culprit of stress at work, or the pile of work that faces you early in the morning, could be the deadline your boss is setting up. These are some of the factors to consider that can absolutely help you in managing stress. I suggest you list the problems that impede your day to day living, put it in a journal, keep it with you the whole day as the list may grow as you identify them. After identifying the problem, think of ways on how you could solve them. For example, scheduling the tasks by setting the allotted time slots every day. As they say, successful people plan their day well. Keep this as a daily habit and I guarantee you stress will be eradicated gradually.
2. Change your emotional response to stress
This is very effective in relieving anxiety. Face the problem that is long been bothering you. Doing the things that bother you first thing in the morning can help alleviate the odd feeling. Getting the root of the problem, working on it until you get the appropriate solution is the key. Once resolved, you will not be thinking of it the whole day. Identifying and doing the most difficult task is advisable since the remaining tasks are easy to do and it will be a lot easier to handle.
3. Always embrace positivity
Study shows that the most successful people have an optimistic view towards the future. Instead of saying that the job is difficult, say to yourself that you can do it and it will be easy. Be very positive all the time because the more positive you are the more chances of the universe favoring you. The more positive you become every day, the more you get closer to your dreams. Avoid the negative thoughts that are surrounding you.
4. Be with like-minded people
Look for people that is willing to support your needs all the way. Surrounding yourself with people who share the same sentiments with you is great in managing stress. It is good to mingle to friends with the same attitude, goals and ambitions in life. Choose your friends wisely, be with people who are positive and has a unique way of dealing with life’s stressors. Avoid those friends who doesn’t believe in you and those that are not a good influence in your life. Remain friends with them, greet them but avoid hanging out with them. This is a challenge at first but once you get accustomed to it, it will surprisingly change your life.
5. Look for mentors
Seek for people who are already doing what you love doing. They are happy and carefree. They can help you achieve your dreams and share their life experiences. Start by looking for famous people in your country. Motivational speakers and authors often conduct a seminar. Great videos are also found in sites like youtube. Watch it and find a way to apply the learnings as much as possible. Do what they are doing, acquire their knowledge. Most often, they will share their failures in the past and the things they have done to overcome those failures. Most of them are now reaping the rewards of their efforts and share them to people like you who wants to succeed in life.
6. Read self-help books
It is recommended to read 5 books each week. This is one of the habits of successful people. If this overwhelms you, try to start with 1 book per week first. Read books on how you can overcome stress in your life. Also, motivational books that will help you get your attention to whatever is your goal. Educate your self, this is the key to success. As Jim Rohn says, “You do not need motivation to speed you up, what you need is Education to turn you around”. Instead of lingering on your ex-boyfriend who cheated on you, why not invest in education or attend seminars that may help you forget your unpleasant thoughts. Write a book about the heartaches you are experiencing, who knows that book might be a way of sharing the world your insights on how you overcame your brokenness and might profit on it.
7. Exercise regularly
Doing aerobic exercises really help in reducing stress through the toxic sweats that is released from the body when you move. Go for a walk around the neighborhood at least 30 minutes each day, three times a week. This is one thing we procrastinate but gives a huge impact to our overall health. The more you feel good about your body, the more confident you become. Alternate it with relaxation techniques and breathing exercises which you will find in Yoga.Taking deep breaths is the best way of removing toxins in the body. The key thing here is commitment and doing what is hard, but doing it anyway. Don’t let your mind dictate your body, let your body dictate your mind. Develop a daily routine and stick to the adhered schedule.
8. Eat a healthy diet
You are what you eat. What’s unique with us, is that when we feel sick we immediately self-medicate and introduce artificial solution to the body not realizing that the key to a healthy lifestyle is eating the right kind of food. We can avoid these diseases that cause us to worry about our health. Fruitify your breakfast and vegefy your lunch and dinner. Start your day right by eating a variety of fresh fruits every morning. Fruits should be eaten alone to let the body utilize its’ effectiveness because it only takes 30 minutes for them to be digested. Therefore, the optimal effect can be experience faster. Fruits are rich in vitamins and minerals that aids in alleviating stress and fight organism that cause diseases. Next, eat green leafy vegetables at lunch and dinner. The amount of meat eaten must equal the amount of vegetable ingested in the body. This is the principle of eating a balanced diet.
9. Increase fluid intake
It is recommended to drink 3 litres of water per day. Water removes the toxins in our body through sweat and urination. The amount of water also differs from each individual, so it is very important to note that volume per volume replacement is necessary. Carry small containers of water with you every day, place a measurement to the amount of water you will drink per hour.
10. Get enough sleep
Sleep is one of the biggest factor affecting stress. When we lack sleep, we tend to think irrationally and the body is rather acting weird. We need to adequately fuel our minds and body by getting 8 hours of sleep every day. It is also important to know that the body is repairing itself from 10pm until 3am. So, sleep must be done during these hours when the body is doing its’ natural defense mechanism. Moreover, 20-minute power naps during the day is also encouraged.
11. Avoid alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs
These alternative chemicals are very harmful to the body. It may temporarily relieve stress but, facing the culprit is the most effective way of dealing with stress. Address the problem bravely with a clear mind.
12. Reduce drinking coffee and softdrinks
Recent study shows that caffeine is bad for the health. Try reducing the amount of coffee you drink each day, gradually tapering it down until your body is getting used to it. Replace it by drinking tea and fruit juices.
13. Do what makes you happy
Spend time with your loved ones, play with your pet, talk to a few of your trusted friends and share your sentiments. Reward yourself. Go shopping if it makes you happy. But be careful not to spend too much, you might not want to see your credit card bill full of debts. Listen to your favorite music, if dancing is your passion do it then. Some people also relieved their stress through painting.
14. Join small caring groups
Let us not forget that praying and meditating is one of the most effective way in coping with stress. Join a small caring group in your community, commit yourself in attending to it weekly. Pray and ask help from God.
Finally, I’m leaving you with a passage from the Bible. This is from the book of Sirach 30:14-15, It is better to be poor, but strong and healthy, than to be rich, but poor in health. A sound, healthy body and a cheerful attitude are more valuable than gold and jewels.