Some of us cope with stress in different ways. Some of us seem to roll with it, others seem highly sensitive to it and others bottle it up until it explodes, sending anyone within range into hiding.
Here we have put together some of our favorite stress-reducing tips for you to practice when you are trying to find ways to cope with stress.
1. Physical activity - Stressful situations increase the level of stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol in your body. Go for a run, go dancing, practice yoga, have sex, just start moving your body in a way that feels good. Have you ever noticed that when you do this, you tend to forget your stress and are just in the moment?
If you are able to, try going for a walk outside in nature. Nature seems to soothe the mind and calms the spirit, helping us to breathe deeper and see clearer.
2. Sleep - I know that many of us struggle with sleep within our busy lives and work-weeks. Try to have a bedtime and stick to it. This will help to develop a pattern within our bodies and it will soon become a habit.
Stay off the phone, computer, and TV before bed. Instead you could try meditating, practicing some light yoga, taking a bath, or read a book. Get your body ready to go to bed and turn off gadgets at least 30-mins before you hit the sack. Doing so, will help you get better quality sleep overall.
3. Get Creative - Do you love knitting, painting, playing music, gardening, baking, or building? By doing something that is creative and you find joy in, reduces anxiety, boosts your mood, and even slows your heart rate.
Repetitive creative motions like knitting, drawing, or writing help activate flow, and are all tasks that create a result. And when you succeed at creating a result - your brain is flooded with dopamine, that feel-good chemical that actually helps motivate you.
4. Meditation - Meditation can reduce stress, anxiety, chronic pain, depression, heart disease, and high blood pressure. Even practicing for 10-mins a day, can be hugely beneficial to how you move through your day. I prefer meditation in the morning, as it sets the tone for the rest of the day, plus its usually the quietest time of the day for me.
Try setting a meditation alarm, to get yourself into this habit. Any new habit takes some discipline, so starting off by having a goal of 10-mins per day and increasing time as you start to feel more comfortable with this practice. Do not worry if you cannot empty your mind and just breathe, this is pretty normal. But as thoughts come into your mind, not trying to control or judge them, simply acknowledge them, then bring your awareness back to the breath.
If you would like to have a guided meditation, there are oodles of guided meditations on YouTube these days to choose from :)
5. Self Care - Take a bath with your favorite essential oils, light some candles and put some soothing music on, allow yourself to have some alone time in the bath for 20 to 30-mins.
Go for a massage, acupuncture, reiki, something that allows your body to relax and you can let go. Think about how many times you've got out of the bath or left a massage appointment feeling so relaxed and blissed out! This is a good state for your mind, body, and spirit.
I know that during these times of isolation it can be very stressful for people even being home alone. When you start to feel overwhelmed and stressed out, try of these tips to bring your stress levels down to a manageable level.
Getting into a practice of meditation, art, self-care, etc. as a daily practice can help how you cope with stress overall. If you have other ways to help with stress, please share in the comments below. Sharing is caring ;)