How to better manage stress?
Updated: Jul 22, 2021
Contrary to popular belief, stress can come from beyond workplaces. We may not consciously acknowledge it, but we have our own stressors in the form of internal or external factors like obligations to family, eking time out to spend with friends, or even financial expectations of stability.
Another popular belief is that stress is bad; this isn't exactly true as stress is a natural part of life and can be a motivator to get things done. However, stress becomes bad news when it's an ongoing situation for extended periods of time.
Thus, it is important to identify and alleviate stress when it becomes excessive and impacts us. But how do we know if stress becomes a problem?
According to the Institute of Mental Health in Singapore, the easiest way to really know for sure, is when "it interferes with the physical, work, and social aspects of our daily lives." If our hobbies no longer bring joy, or when we find it impossible to make time for social activities, that is a clear sign that stress becomes self-destructive.
In fact, stress can manifest as physical symptoms like headaches, dizziness, lack of sexual desires, and emotional states like anxiousness, tensed, or restlessness.
So what can you do?
Here are five (emergency) techniques for stress management!
1. Self Care
A pertinent question people don't ask often and don't really understand is this: "Is self-care important?" And as rhetorical as it may sound and "Yes" being the default answer, what actually constitutes "self-care"?
One way to show that you care for yourself is by identifying the stressors in your life. It's an important first step as it gives you space to examine yourself. By listing out the different
aspects of stressors from the various parts of your life, you can take action on it.
2. Physical Activity
Another way is to introduce some form of physical activity into your schedule. It can be a simple act of taking a short walk or a quick run whenever you feel comfortable. Exercising stimulates the body to release hormones like endorphins that can help block pain and improve sleep, which, conveniently, is the last thing to improve.
Sleep; most importantly, quality sleep. By incorporating a regular resting pattern, you build in a routine for your body and mind to know that it is getting the rest it requires. Here's a few ways you can improve the process of dozing off calmly:
Put your electronics aside 30-60 minutes before bed time.
Don't drink caffeine six hours before heading to bed.
Dim the lights in your room as much as possible.
Meditation, which also brings us to the next technique.
4. Meditation, or other forms of relaxation
The good bit about meditation is that there isn't a need to spend too much time before you see the benefits of lower stress, anxiety, and mood. By starting on the basics, this is enough to lull your mind into a calmer state.
Start by finding a place you won't be disturbed and putting your phone away. You can choose to sit or lie down, as long as you're comfortable.
Focus on the act of breathing- be aware of the rising sensation of your chest as you inhale and exhale. If you have thoughts that come, let them be by not engaging in them, not judging them.
Repeat this act of breathing, this awareness of your body sensations until you feel that you've done enough.
A healthy diet doesn't just improve your physical health, it also affects your mental well being too. It can reduce the effects of stress, build up on immunity, and lower blood pressure.
Sometimes, we reward ourselves after a particularly grueling week of work by munching on comfort food like a McSpicy meal.
That's absolutely fine in moderation, as long as you balance it out with meals that include healthy options like wholemeal bread, lean meats without the fats, and vegetables.
What should I do if I tried stress management and it doesn't work?
But at some point, we've tried to improve our lives and we don't see the results we expect. Like subscribing to a gym membership and hoping to get swole but even after months of working hour, you don't see what you want in the mirror.
That's where The Wellness Origin can help; in a brief sense, here are what we set out to achieve:
We work directly with you to identify your goals and habits
We break down these goals and habits into metrics that are easy to follow daily
We instill a stronger sense of responsibility to your goals to reach success with an easier direction
Right now, we're offering a complimentary consultation that'll chart your life for better. All you need to do to claim it is to contact us below!