Feeling stressed and overwhelmed? You’re not alone! Traffic jams, deadlines, financial woes, job changes, endless chores and never ending to do lists, relationships, family problems- there’s always something grating on our last nerves.
Stress is a natural response to pressure when faced with challenges that require us to adapt and make changes to our habits, routines, thought processes, and lifestyles. In small amounts, stress in life can be beneficial, as it drives, motivates and stimulates one to meet challenging situations that are present throughout everyday life.
However, if stress overwhelms our ability to cope, it can have a negative affects on our health, well being, relationships, work and general enjoyment of life.
Signs of stress can include: Headaches, feeling nausea, shortness of breath, tiredness, poor memory, loss of concentration, feeling irritated or depressed.
So… What can I do about it?
- MINDFULNESS and MEDITATION
Recently there has been a tonne of research showing that practicing mindfulness and meditation can reduce stress significantly. We recommend starting with the guidance of an app such as One Giant Mind, which will talk you through what to do and help you make sense of your meditation experience. It is important to remember that the process of your mind wandering is normal, try not get to caught up on “silencing the mind”.
When you’re under stress and have a hundred things to do, the last thing you may think of doing is exercise. However, any form of exercise has shown to reduce stress levels by boosting those feel good endorphins. Just 30 minutes of exercise can help you to get clear and settle the mind.
- AVOID too much CAFFEINE
What? Too much caffeine? No such thing you say? Actually, you can have too much caffeine and a lot of us do. Coffee, black tea and energy drinks are some examples of drinks with a high caffeine value. Caffeine stimulates your endocrine system, heighten stress even more and fatiguing your adrenals. Aim to stick to 1-2 coffees a day, before 2pm.
- Get ENOUGH SLEEP
Grumpiness, irritability, lack of focus, impatience are all correlated with sleep deprivation making existing stress much harder to manage. Whilst adequate sleep will not cure your stress, a decrease in sleep related troubles will give you more mental, physical and emotional strength to combat the daily stresses.
- SCHEDULE ME TIME
Schedule time during the week to do the things YOU love and that make you feel good. Go for a walk while the sun is out, do something you enjoy on your day off, or book yourself in for a massage and relax.
Work on implementing one or all of these strategies to help you manage your stress better on a daily basis.