Go Ahead And Leave The Party If You Want To
Some people thrive in social situations like happy hours or Zoom trivia night. Others…not so much.
If you fall into the latter group, one easy way to relieve stress fast is to get out of that uncomfortable situation . Its okay to prefer small, intimate gatherings with friends, says Dr. Van Niel. And hanging out at a party is not worth stressing yourself out all night.
Do Something To Make Yourself Laugh
Think back to the last time you laughedand I mean laughed . You probably felt way less stressed in that moment, right?
There’s a reason: People often hold a lot of their stress in their face, and laughs or smiles can help relieve some of that tension, according to the APA.
That’s why Chapman says scheduling time to interact with family on FaceTime or playing with friends on the Nintendo Switch should be a regular activity. Talking to and laughing with family and friends will get rid of those not-so-positive thoughts that can come with feeling isolated and stressed.
Tip : Bring Your Senses To The Rescue
To use your senses to quickly relieve stress, you first need to identify the sensory experiences that work best for you. This can require some experimentation. As you employ different senses, note how quickly your stress levels drop. And be as precise as possible. What is the specific kind of sound or type of movement that affects you the most? For example, if youre a music lover, listen to many different artists and types of music until you find the song that instantly lifts and relaxes you.
Explore a variety of sensory experiences so that no matter where you are, youll always have a tool to relieve stress.
The examples listed below are intended to be a jumping-off point. Let your imagination run free and come up with additional things to try. When you find the right sensory technique, youll know it!
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Chronic Stress Can Be Psychologically And Physically Debilitating
Posted February 22, 2012
Stress is a normal part of living. It affects people of all ages, genders and circumstances and can lead, when it becomes chronic, to physical and psychological health issues. Many of the stressors that we deal with today turn into chronic stressors. They are issues that are not easily resolved. Things build up. One thing leads to another. We feel overwhelmed.
This is quite different from the stress that can be beneficial at times, that can produce a boost that provides us with drive and energy to get through a situation. Everyday stressors can be managed with healthy stress management behaviors. We can take a break. We can talk to others about what’s going on. We can take some deep breaths. We can rethink the situation that we are confronting. All of these strategies can work to help us get through everyday stressors.
A number of studies have illustrated the strong link between such problems as insomnia and chronic stress. Such stress can adversely affect immunity to infections and negatively impact the cardiovascular, the neuroendocrine and the central nervous systems.
Social support can also be very important, but this, again, requires taking the time to send an e-mail to a friend or have a phone conversation. Meditation and mindful prayer can also help the mind and the body to relax and focus. These techniques can help you to see new perspectives, to develop self-compassion and forgiveness and to begin to rethink the priorities in your life.
Take A Bathbut Not A Bubble Bath
Self-care advocates constantly talk up the relaxation benefits of a hot bubble bath, but science tells us that just floating in a pool of water can be great for stress relief, as well.
Floatation-REST is a specific type of water therapy that involves floating on your back in a pool of water saturated with Epsom salt. Floating in an Epsom salt pool for one hour reduced anxiety in people with anxiety and stress disorders in one 2018 study in the journal PLos One.
Feel free to look for a spa near you that has an Epsom salt pools, or go ahead and relax in a tub filled DIY-style with water and Epsom salts.
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Talk It Out Or Reach Out To Friends
Social support is an extremely effective way to relieve stress. Ask a friend or co-worker to be a sounding board as you talk out your issues.
Sometimes the case with stressful situations is that youre trying to find a problem or a connection when there isnt one. An outsiders perspective may help you see that more clearly.
If you do reach out to a friend, be sure to express your thanks and return the favor when they ask!
Tips To Manage Stressful Situations
It might surprise you to learn that biological stress is a fairly recent discovery. It wasnt until the late 1950s that endocrinologist Hans Selye first identified and documented stress.
Symptoms of stress existed long before Selye, but his discoveries led to new research that has helped millions cope with stress. Weve compiled a list of the top 10 ways to relieve stress.
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Am I Worrying Too Much
If you have the occasional anxious thought, theres likely no need to be concerned about your emotional well-being or mental fitness. However, chronic worrying can be a symptom of something more serious, like an anxiety disorder. This type of worry can lead to physical symptoms like muscle tension, insomnia or poor sleep hygiene, stomach pain, back pain, and panic attacks.
Are anxiety and chronic stress starting to interfere with your daily life, work, or relationships? If so, its time to get serious about learning how to stop chronic worrying.
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Find Your Pause Button
After experiencing times of great change, high demand, or significant loss, its essential to press pause and rest. Often creating time and space for rest means saying no to invitations and requests for help, at least temporarily, says Callahan. Consider spending quiet time daily: contemplation, reflection, and breathing fosters resilience and calm.
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Tip : Practice The 4 As Of Stress Management
While stress is an automatic response from your nervous system, some stressors arise at predictable times: your commute to work, a meeting with your boss, or family gatherings, for example. When handling such predictable stressors, you can either change the situation or change your reaction. When deciding which option to choose in any given scenario, its helpful to think of the four As: avoid, alter, adapt, or accept.
Signs Its Time To Seek Help
Even with a good self-management plan, sometimes you may need more support. A mental health professional can be a great resource, but theyre particularly important to see more urgently if you have thoughts of self-harm or feel drawn to drugs or alcohol as a coping mechanism.
Seek help right away if you have suicidal thoughts. Call your healthcare provider or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK . Call 911 if you or someone you know is in immediate danger or go to the nearest emergency room.
Remember: Chronic stress is something many people experience, but it doesnt mean you have to slog through it, and certainly not alone. The sooner you get care and prioritize your own healing, the sooner you can feel more like yourself.
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Get A Little Help From Your Friends
Social support is a huge component of a healthy life. According to a Journal of Affective Disorders Reportsstudy published in April 2021, loneliness has been associated with a significant level of psychological stress. Therefore, if loneliness is adding to your stress, call a friend or family member to chat, Dr. Saltz recommended. “Social support is definitely a stress-reliever,” Dr. Saltz told Health. “Talking with people that you feel connected to, trust, and can share your feelings with is important.” This includes a therapist as well if your stress is feeling prolonged.
Healthy Ways To Handle Lifes Stressors
When stress becomes unmanageable, try these evidence-based tools to tackle it in healthy ways.
Healthy ways to handle lifes stressors.
Stressful experiences are a normal part of life, and the is a survival mechanism that primes us to respond to threats. Some stress is positive: Imagine standing in front of a crowd to give a speech and hitting it out of the park. Stressful? Certainly. But also challenging and satisfying.
But when a stressor is negative and cant be fought off or avoided such as layoffs at work or a loved ones medical crisis or when the experience of stress becomes , our biological responses to stress can impair our physical and mental health.
Fortunately, there are many evidence-based tools to help combat the negative effects of stress in healthy ways. They recommend that you:
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Reframe Your Thinking About Stress Itself
Stress responses, including faster heart rate and breathing, evolved to improve our performance in stressful situations. Reminding yourself of stresss evolutionary value may improve your performance and paradoxically reduce feelings of stress, in that youre not adding stress about stress to the stress the original trigger aroused.
Symptoms Of Chronic Stress
You can witness both mental as well as physical symptoms in chronic stress. When the stress becomes chronic, it can intervene and disrupt your healthy lifestyle.
In order to find out how to relieve long term stress, its of utmost importance to look for the symptoms of chronic stress.
Mentioned below are some of the symptoms that people are likely to get when their stress becomes chronic.
So, mentioned above was the list of health complications that indicates that your stress is chronic.
Along with that, stress can also cause long-term effects on your physical health.
Lets get to know more about it in the next section.
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Turn On Some Ariana Grande
Many people use music as a means of dealing with emotionsthey listen when they’re sad, when they’re angry, or when they want to get energizedso it makes sense to use music as a way to chill the eff out.
While some will claim that certain types of music are better than others for stress relief, its most important that youre specifically listening to music in order to relax, according to a 2015 study from the journal Psychoneuroendocrinology. Think about it: If youre turning on the radio because you are deliberately attempting to tone down your stress, youre likely paying more attention and really trying to de-stress. Do it with intention.
How Can We Handle Stress In Healthy Ways
Stress serves an important purpose it enables us to respond quickly to threats and avoid danger. But lengthy exposure to stress may lead to mental health difficulties like anxiety and depression, or increased physical health problems.
A large body of research suggests that increased stress levels interfere with your ability to deal with physical illness, says Dr. Borland. While no one can avoid all stress, you can work to handle it in healthy ways that increase your potential to recover.
1. Eat and drink to optimize your health
Some people try to reduce stress by drinking alcohol or eating too much. These actions may seem to help in the moment, but actually may add to stress in the long run. Caffeine also can compound the effects of stress. While consuming a healthy, balanced diet can help combat stress.
2. Exercise regularly
In addition to having physical health benefits, exercise has been shown to be a powerful stress reliever. Consider noncompetitive aerobic exercise, strengthening with weights or movement activities like yoga or Tai Chi, and set reasonable goals for yourself. Aerobic exercise has been shown to release endorphins natural substances that help you feel better and maintain a positive attitude.
3. Stop using tobacco and nicotine products
4. Study and practice relaxation techniques
5. Reduce triggers of stress
6. Examine your values and live by them
7. Assert yourself
8. Set realistic goals and expectations
9. Sell yourself to yourself
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Tense And Relax Your Muscles
One of Dr. Saltz’s favorite de-stressing techniques actually involves tensing your muscles, holding them in that tense position for 5 to 10 seconds, and then releasing, creating an almost-instant feeling of relaxation. This is known as progressive muscle relaxation, and you can work different groups of muscles all over your body, per MedlinePlus. “This practice reduces stress through the mind-body connectionwhen we’re feeling very stressed, we tense up our bodies,” Dr. Saltz said. “And when we tense up our bodies, it reinforces the message to your mind to be stressed. It’s a signal of physiological arousal. Doing what you can to relax your body helps relax your mind.”
Focus On What You Can Control
“Engaging in present-focused awareness and what is happening right now is effective for managing strong emotions,” Chapman says.
He recommends using a meditation app like Headspace to get you in that self-focused mindsetthen move forward with your day with the awareness that you can only control what you do .
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Make Sleep Your Priority
Most of the psychological issues spring from an inadequate amount of sleep. A night of proper sleep is an integral part of being optimally healthy.
So, try sleeping for 7 to 8 hours to make your body ready to tolerate stress.
Interestingly, weight gain does make you snore which as a result disrupts your good nights sleep. So, for a night of better sleep, it is also recommended to keep a check on your weight.
How Can Work Stress Affect Well
Long-term exposure to work-related stressors like these can affect mental health. Research links burnout with symptoms of anxiety and depression. In some cases, this sets the stage for serious mental health problems. Indeed, one study shows younger people who routinely face heavy workloads and extreme time pressure on the job are more likely to experience major depressive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.
High levels of stress at work and outside of it can affect physical health, too. Repeated activation of the fight-or-flight response can disrupt bodily systems and increase susceptibility to disease. For example, repeated release of the stress hormone cortisol can disturb the immune system, and raise the likelihood of developing autoimmune disorders, cardiovascular disease, and Alzheimers disease. Chronic stress can also affect health by interfering with healthy behaviors, such as exercise, balanced eating, and sleep.
Work stress can also harm companies or organizations. Burnout reduces job productivity and boosts absenteeism and job turnover, and also leads to conflict between coworkers, causing stress to spread within a workplace.
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Do Some Deep Breathing
Dr. Saltz is a fan of the sweet spot between meditation and full-blown physical exercise, which are deep-breathing exercises, and the psycho-physiological effects deep breathing has on relieving stress. Simply breathing in, holding, and releasing to counts of five can do wonders in slowing your heart rate and hitting a virtual reset button on whatever activity was causing you stress, Dr. Saltz said. The best part about this tactic is that it can be done pretty much anywhere.
If you’re looking for other ways to decrease your level of stress, the American Heart Association and the National Institute of Mental Health both offer stress management strategies you could potentially use as well.
Practice Good Time Management
Perhaps youre stressed because you feel like you always have an overwhelming amount of tasks to deal with, whether at home or at work.
Could it be time to go back to the drawing board and reassess how youre managing your time? You may not notice it, but it could be poor time management thats leading to you feeling so overwhelmed.
Proper time management and properly sorting your tasks out could help you get a better hold on what needs to be done, giving you more time for rest, relaxation and the other fun things that you deserve to help take the edge off.
Here are some time management tips that you can start applying in your daily life:
- Prioritise tasks based on importance and urgency
- Set a time limit for tasks
- Use a to-do list
- Dont multitask
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Quick Stress Relief On The Go
In traffic. Play music or listen to an audiobook. Take a different route to see something new. Do neck-rolls at stoplights. Sing in the car to stay awake and happy.
Public transportation. Take a break from reading, cell conversations, and music to tune into the sights and sounds around you. Try noticing something new, even if youre on the same old bus ride.
Running errands. Wear a special perfume or lotion so you can enjoy it while you rush from place to place. Carry a stress ball in your pocket. Take a mental snapshot or postcard at each destination.
Waiting in lines. Instead of worrying about time slipping away, focus on your breathing. People watch. Chat with the person ahead of you. Chew a stick of minty gum.