Ways To Relieve Stress In 10 Minutes Or Less
Below, youll find a list of simple and quick ways to relieve stress. These are particularly helpful for acute stress and arent intended to be the solution to chronic or intense stress.
Natural Remedies For Anxiety And Stress
Natural remedies are generally safe to use alongside more conventional medical therapies.
However, alterations to the diet and some natural supplements can change the way antianxiety medications work, so it is essential to consult a doctor before trying these solutions. The doctor may also be able to recommend other natural remedies.
Tip : Connect To Others
There is nothing more calming than spending quality time with another human being who makes you feel safe and understood. In fact, face-to-face interaction triggers a cascade of hormones that counteracts the bodys defensive fight-or-flight response. Its natures natural stress reliever . So make it a point to connect regularlyand in personwith family and friends.
Keep in mind that the people you talk to dont have to be able to fix your stress. They simply need to be good listeners. And try not to let worries about looking weak or being a burden keep you from opening up. The people who care about you will be flattered by your trust. It will only strengthen your bond.
Of course, its not always realistic to have a pal close by to lean on when you feel overwhelmed by stress, but by building and maintaining a network of close friends you can improve your resiliency to lifes stressors.
Tips for building relationships
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The Right Supplement Might Help Quell Stress And Anxiety
Most of us live with a low-simmering level of stress from trying to juggle work and family responsibilities to navigating sudden problems, such as a job loss or health scare. And now, we are all experiencing added stress from the anxiety and unknowns of living in the age of COVID-19. A May 2020 survey by the American Psychological Association found not surprisingly that stress about work and the economy has increased over the past year, especially among parents.
Elevated stress hormones, especially cortisol, can increase inflammation, reduce immunity, and raise the risk for high blood pressure, stroke, and heart attack. In fact, according to the National Institute of Mental Health, chronic stress can negatively impact every aspect of your health and contribute to a wide range of problems that include:
Stress is a problem we clearly need to address, but what can we do? The good news is that there are numerous strategies that have been shown to be effective for relieving stress, including eating a healthy diet, getting plenty of sleep, exercising regularly, talking to friends or a mental health professional, and engaging in relaxation techniques and meditation, just to name a few.
When Does Stress Become Chronic
Stress that lasts for weeks or months indicate chronic stress.
Chronic stress can impact your overall health. One risk is high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. For example, studies have shown that chronic stress is associated with a hypertension . Furthermore, some risks can snowball into others: Hypertension, for example, can raise your risk for other health problems, such as heart attack or stroke.
Similarly, the hormone cortisolwhich gets released during chronic stressmay also lead to cravings of sweets and fats. As we all know, unhealthy eating can also raise your risk for obesity or other chronic diseases.
But the consequences of chronic stress dont stop with the physical effects. Stress can affect your emotional or mental health toonot just making you more prone to nervous or anxious feelings, but also more depressed. Recently, the American Medical Association acknowledged how anxiety and depression can be connected, as well as how the isolation of COVID-19 may exacerbate problems.
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Snag 15 Minutes To Yourself Every Single Day
When youre dealing with coworkers, friends, a partner, and kids all day, every day, it can be helpful for your stress to just take a few minutes to yourself each day. Set aside 15 to 20 minutes of me-time every day, the AHA suggests, and do whatever you want. You can simply sit in your car and breathe deeply or listen to music before you go inside for the night or spend that time on your porch with a cup of coffee in the morninganything that helps you relax.
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.
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A Jigsaw Puzzle For A Hands
The best thing about a puzzle is that it makes you feel like youre being productive and making progress on something, while finding joy as you add each individual piece. Plus, you can make it as short- or long-term of a project as you wantas long as you start it on an otherwise seldom-used table or use a portable surface specifically for the hobby. Snag a jigsaw puzzle from Ravensburger, which offers an enormous variety of vibrant, scenic puzzles with a wide range of pieces, to work on whenever you want to loosen up.
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Perform An Act Of Kindness
Acts of kindness can help boost confidence, optimism, and happiness while reducing stress. In fact, studies show that people who volunteer are overall healthier and happier than those who dont. If you have a lot of time, consider volunteering in organizing a community event. Truth be told, you dont need to devote hours of time to a volunteer opportunity to enjoy these benefits, though. Simply look for opportunities throughout the day to perform a random act of kindness like the ideas listed here.
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What Can Prolonged Stress Lead To
Stress is a natural reaction to many situations in life, such as work, family, relationships and money problems.
We mentioned earlier on that a moderate amount of stress can help us perform better in challenging situations,34 but too much or prolonged stress can lead to physical problems. This can include lower immunity levels,35 digestive and intestinal difficulties, e.g. irritable bowel syndrome ,36 or mental health problems such as depression.3 This means it is important to manage your stress and keep it at a healthy level to prevent long-term damage to your body and mind.
Exercise For At Least 20 Minutes Every Day
Exercise is an amazing stress-reliever. It can lower your blood pressure, improve your sleep, and give you more energy, according to the American Heart Association.
But you don’t need to go all-out in high-intensity training every day to get the benefits: Even a 20-minute walk, run, swim or dance session in the midst of a stressful time can give an immediate effect that can last for several hours, says the American Psychological Association . So hit the gym for 30 minutes to work off your stress, or try a new fitness class.
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Simple Ways To Relieve Stress And Anxiety
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Stress and anxiety are common experiences for most people. In fact, 70% of adults in the United States say they feel stress or anxiety daily.
Here are 16 simple ways to relieve stress and anxiety.
Exercise is one of the most important things you can do to combat stress.
It might seem contradictory, but putting physical stress on your body through exercise can relieve mental stress.
The benefits are strongest when you exercise regularly. People who exercise regularly are less likely to experience anxiety than those who dont exercise .
There are a few reasons behind this:
- Stress hormones: Exercise lowers your bodys stress hormones such as cortisol in the long run. It also helps release endorphins, which are chemicals that improve your mood and act as natural painkillers.
- Sleep: Exercise can also improve your sleep quality, which can be negatively affected by stress and anxiety.
- Confidence: When you exercise regularly, you may feel more competent and confident in your body, which in turn promotes mental wellbeing.
- Try to find an exercise routine or activity you enjoy, such as walking, dancing, rock climbing or yoga.
Activities such as walking or jogging that involve repetitive movements of large muscle groups can be particularly stress relieving.
Appetite Changes And Weight Gain
Changes in appetite are common during times of stress.
When you feel stressed out, you may find yourself with no appetite at all or overeating without noticing.
One small 2006 study of 272 female college students found that 81 percent reported that they experienced changes in appetite when they were stressed out, with 62 percent stating they had an increase in appetite .
Changes in appetite may also cause fluctuations in weight during stressful periods. For example, a study involving 1,355 people in the United States found that stress was associated with weight gain in adults already living with extra weight .
A third study from 2017 found that individuals with higher cortisol and insulin levels and higher levels of chronic stress were more likely to gain weight in the future . However, the study was limited in the scope of research in that participants were predominantly white females.
While these studies show an association between stress and changes in appetite or weight, more studies are needed to understand other possible factors are involved and how stress impacts different people.
Procrastination As A Mental Health Symptom
The source of procrastination sometimes runs a little deeper than a difficulty regulating emotions.
If you live with anxiety, for example, you might spend a lot of time worrying about what specific tasks involve or feeling nervous about what could go wrong. These kinds of fears can absolutely lead to delay.
The link between anxiety conditions and perfectionism can also play a part in procrastination. When you dont believe you can do something perfectly, you might feel anxious about doing it at all and continually put it off instead.
Depression, which often wears away at energy and self-worth, can also involve procrastination. You might neglect certain responsibilities because you cant muster up the motivation to complete them, or because you doubt yourself and your skills.
Procrastination can also result from
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.
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An App For Guided Meditation
Meditation is a helpful skill to learn if you often experience racing thoughts or restlessness. Not sure where to start? The Headspace app, our favorite meditation app, offers a library of themed courses, daily meditations, sleep sounds, and bedtime exercises to get you into the practiceand it’s free to try.
A Kit That Teaches You A Soothing Craft
Its no mystery that crafting projects have a calming effect. Needlecrafts especially offer an artistic outlet as well as a rhythmic movement pattern, and they result in the creation of something beautiful you can treasure and be proud of. If youve never tried one, we suggest learning to knit, crochet, or do needlepoint with kits from We Are Knitters. You can choose from dozens of stylish hats, scarves, sweaters, and more, filtering among four skill levels. Next time youre stressed, plop down with your kit, which includes detailed instructions and all the materials you need.
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Stress And Anxiety Relief: 10 Strategies That Can Help
Stress and anxiety are a normal part of life. Sometimes they can even be a good thing. They can inspire you to take action and do your best when it really matters.
The problem is when feelings of stress and anxiety get out of control. Then these feelings cannot only impair your performancethey can also make you sick. Chronic stress can have a number of serious health consequences including decreased immunity, decreased longevity, and a higher risk for anxiety disorders.
Stress is a response to a potential threat, while anxiety is the reaction to that stress. Unfortunately, both are incredibly common among U.S. adults and evidence suggests that recent world events have made the problem worse for many people. Nearly 8 in 10 adults report increased stress levels as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
While you cant avoid all of the stress in your life, there are stress and anxiety relief strategies that can help you cope more effectively. This article discusses some self-help techniques that can help you get a handle on stress and anxiety. It also covers when to consider talking to a professional.
Cut Out Things That Add To Your Stress
Sometimes, the best way to reduce your stress is to cut something out of your life. Get rid of the things that are adding to your stress so you can experience more peace.
Watching the news, being constantly connected to your digital devices, drinking alcohol, and consuming too much caffeine are just a few of the things that may add more stress to your life. Making some changes to your daily habits could be instrumental in helping you feel better.
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Snuggle Kiss Or Hug Someone You Love
A strong support network is a great way to beat stress during a rough time. One study shows that social support is a hugely effective stress management mechanism with students learning to cope with stress. Another study showed that frequent hugs from a partner can lower blood pressure. Kick-start that support by cuddling up with someone you love. Knowing someone is there is often enough to help you manage your stress more effectively.
Festivals Fairs & Special Events
Every city, state, and country has festivals, fairs, and special events. Find one youre interested in. If you time your wedding right, your honeymoon can be a trip to one of these festivals. Burning Man, SXSW, Bonnaroo, the Renaissance Fair, regional harvest festivals, Mardi Gras, New Years Eve in Times Square, a movie premiere, or whatever youre into. If you plan your honeymoon at the right time in the right place, the possibilities are endless.
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Accept The Things You Can’t Change
Changing a difficult situation isn’t always possible. Try to concentrate on the things you do have control over.
“If your company is going under and is making redundancies, for example, there’s nothing you can do about it,” says Professor Cooper.
“In a situation like that, you need to focus on the things that you can control, such as looking for a new job.”
Quick Ways To Reduce Stress
Taking care of your long-term mental and physical health is an important part of stress management. However, there isnt always time to take a nap, hike a fourteener, or read a novel. Thus, here are 25 ways to reduce stress in five minutes or less. From eating chocolate to meditating, there is a quick stress-relieving tactic for everyone.
1. BreatheSlow, deep breaths can help lower blood pressure and heart rate. Try pranayama breathing, a yogic method that involves breathing through one nostril at a time to relieve anxiety. The technique is supposed to work the same way as acupuncture, balancing the mind and body.
2. Listen to Music No matter what the song, sometimes belting out the lyrics to a favorite tune makes everything seem all right. If youre in a public place, just listening to music can be a quick fix for a bad mood. Classical music can be especially relaxing right before bedtime.
3. Take a Quick Walk When youre feeling overwhelmed or having trouble concentrating, go for a quick stroll around the block. Youll get the benefits of alone time, physical activity, and a few minutes to gather your thoughts.
4. Find the Sun If its a sunny day, head outside for an easy way to lift your spirits. Bright light can be an effective treatment for people who suffer from depression, and can even cheer up otherwise healthy people.
8. Rub Your Feet Over a Golf Ball You can get an impromptu, relaxing foot massage by rubbing your feet back and forth over a golf ball.
12. Be Alone
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