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9 simple tips to reduce stress

9 simple tips to reduce stress

Hallie Criste

Health & Wellbeing

Jul 23, 2019

Stress is a powerful force and affects all types of people in a variety of ways. Stress alone does not have to be a bad thing, but often times it’s associated with poor decision-making, behaviour changes and even health problems. Being able to recognise your triggers and channelling it into relaxation and reduction techniques can greatly improve both your mental and physical health. Check out these 8 simple tips to help you reduce stress.

  1. Make two lists. One of all the things that are stressing you out and another of what you need to do. Then, try to complete just one task from your to-do list. Putting your stressors on paper in front of you can be a healthy release. Additionally, the first step in a project is commonly the most daunting. You’ll feel more in control by getting that first step over and done with.
  2. Spend time with those around you and get support. Spending time with family and friends can be the fix you need. It’s easy to get stuck in your head about things and sometimes just letting it out and feeling supported/knowing you have people on your side can be of comfort.
  3. Exercise. Exercising helps clear your mind so that you’re only focused on the activity in front of you. Additionally, it gets your ‘feel-good’ endorphins pumping and can improve your quality of sleep.
  4. Resolve personal conflicts. Personal conflicts can have more of an impact on you than you think. Your relationships are important to you and if something is bothering you or not sitting right, it can be the icing on the cake of a stressful day. Reach out to the person and communicate what you’re feeling.
  5. Prioritise ‘you’ time. It can be hard to say no to friends and family, but it’s important to take time to fill up your personal fuel tank. This can take the form of an activity or hobby that you’re passionate about or having a nap and just staying in to watch a movie. It’s ok to say no if it means conserving your energy and maintaining a healthy headspace.
  6. Get a good night sleep. A good night sleep can be enough to fix a lot of problems. It helps calm and restore the body, stabilises your mood, improves concentration and sharpens cognitive function.
  7. Reflect on what’s stressing you out. And consider whether it’s rational or not. Will it matter in a week? A month? A year? Some stress can be good and it’s important to care about the things that matter but it’s also extremely common to get weighed down by something that’s insignificant.
  8. Reduce caffeine. Often times when people have a lot they need to get done they turn to caffeine to give them energy. However, we don’t recommend this as caffeine is a stimulant that has been shown to increase anxiety.
  9. Practice mindfulness and relaxation techniques (breathing, listening to soothing music, etc.). Stress can come from a fear of the unknown or of things that are out of your control. Meditation and mindfulness help you stay focused on the present. Additionally, relaxation techniques can help mitigate the bodily effects of stress.

References:
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/16-ways-relieve-stress-anxiety#section4
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/16-ways-relieve-stress-anxiety
https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/staying-well/reducing-stress
https://www.webmd.com/balance/stress-management/stress-relief-breathing-techniques