Replace that uneasy, anxious & overwhelmed feeling with a calm, cool & collected demeanor.
Did you know that 33% of U.S. adults feel that they are living with extreme stress? When considering job pressure, money troubles, poor nutrition, sleep deprivation and media overload, it’s no wonder that Americans are stressed out.
An even more troubling statistic: only 1 in 3 U.S. adults are actually happy.
It’s time to make a change.
“It’s not stress that kills us; it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye
There are some situations where it might be a healthy decision to pursue a new career or relationship, but for the most part, it’s time to take ownership of how we react to stress which, in turn, may positively influence your happiness. So, how can you cope with stress in a positive way? Try these three tips to cope with the hustle-and-bustle of everyday life:
1. Make rest-time a priority
While a lack of sleep may not seem like a direct cause of stress, it does impact your stress levels. You’re not helping anyone by running yourself ragged. It’s important to know how sleep contributes to your health and productivity – meaning a lack of sleep is nothing to brag about. So, listen to your body. Take a breather when you need one and get your sleep schedule on track.
If you struggle with energy-levels, hold yourself back from grabbing the next cup of coffee. It can interfere with a restful night’s sleep and the better you sleep, the more alert and energized you’ll feel the next day, leading to increased productivity. Regardless of your caffeine intake, the American Sleep Association recommends that adults get at least eight hours of sleep time each night. Some adults may only require 6 to 7 hours, while others require 9 to 10. Find what works for you and make that your normal amount of sleep.
2. Focus on exercise and nutrition
Well-balanced and consistent meals can help sustain your energy levels throughout the day, allowing you to be more productive. Maintaining nutrition can also help prevent you from binging on unhealthy snacks later in the day, leading to the stress of feeling guilty.
According to Harvard Men’s Health Watch, adequate exercise throughout the day can reduce the amount of adrenaline and cortisol created by your body, lowering your stress levels. Try incorporating small workouts into your day and make time for exercise. Forbes provides a good starting point with these 10 exercises to try at your desk.
3. Make your stress your friend
Psychologist, Kelly McGonigal, recommends transforming your stress from a problem to a challenge. According to McConigal’s findings, people who develop a healthy mindset about stress suffer fewer negative health effects from stressful life events. You might even learn a little bit about yourself and what’s important to you from this response.
So, how do you transform your stress into a challenge? Start by breaking the problems down piece by piece. Engage the problems and solve them one-by-one. Prioritizing the most important obstacles and tackling them first may leave you feeling a sense of accomplishment. Before you know it, you’ll see your to-do list shrinking and your stress levels lowering.
Stress can be, well, stressful. But, with the right mindset, you can develop a healthy reaction to anything that has you overwhelmed.
Don’t let your stress get the best of you – try these three tips the next time you’re feeling the pressure.
How do you handle stress? We’d love to know – comment below to share!
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Katrina has a serious love for strong coffee, great adventures and snuggles with her bulldog. When she isn’t researching interior design inspiration, you can find her testing a new restaurant or Instagramming her life away.