3 Tips To Help Manage Stress
Stress is something we all must contend with as human beings, and while some types of stress might help us feel motivated or inspired to take action, other types of stress contribute to feelings of burnout and can wreak havoc on our health. Since April is Stress Awareness Month we wanted to discuss our top 3 tips to manage stress. These tips can help alleviate unwanted stress, leading to a healthier, more positive, and better overall quality of life.
1. Ask For Help
It might sound too easy to be true, but only because so many of us overlook this very simple tip: ask for help when you need it. Ask your partner or a family member for help with the kids, ask a coworker to collaborate on a project, hire a financial planner to help you with your bills/debt/budget, etc. Whatever it is that is stressing you out, reach out to someone who can help you. Don’t be afraid to take a step back if you are overwhelmed. Also, remember that it is ok and sometimes necessary to seek professional help. Find a mental health professional, a registered dietitian, or call your doctor if you are having trouble managing stress on your own.
2. Set Healthy Boundaries
Setting healthy boundaries involves you learning to say “no” when you need to. Don’t take on extra tasks that might lead to burnout. Try to limit the time you spend with family members or friends who drain you emotionally. Avoid interactions with coworkers who add to your stress levels. Walk away from conflicts that don’t require your attention and don’t participate in arguments that don't serve a purpose. If it isn’t possible to say no to a certain situation, refer back to the first tip and ask for help when you need it or allow yourself to take a break and step away from something if necessary.
Lastly, an easy way to set aside some time for stress-relief is to journal. Just 5-10 minutes each day of journaling can be a powerful way to let go of stressful days, to express yourself with no worry of judgment, and to allow you to say the things that can’t be spoken aloud. One of the simplest ways to journal for stress-relief is with a gratitude journal. A gratitude journal allows you to acknowledge the good things happening in your life, and to pay attention to and see the beauty of the positive things in life. Positivity and optimism can combat stress and have a positive effect on our mental health. Positive thinking through a gratitude journal can bring happiness, increased energy, and a sense of calm. There’s no right or wrong way to journal: jot down a bulleted list, write about your day, write about how you feel, write a single sentence or start with some prompts to help inspire you —just write.
Stress management is different for everyone, but these three tips are all great ways to reduce the stressful load and combat the negative effects of stress and anxiety to help you sleep better, boost your energy, and get you feeling like yourself again so you can lead the healthiest, most fulfilled life possible.