Stress Awareness

April 16 is National Stress Awareness Day

We live in stressful times. It’s almost impossible to live without any stress at all.

Stressed?

3 Simple Actions That Lower Your Stress Level

If the hustle, bustle, and challenges of everyday life are making your stress levels inch up each day, you must find a way to break free! Holding onto the stresses of yesterday will simply add to the tension of today and tomorrow. Soon the amount of pressure you carry around inside you from this stress may become unbearable.

You work hard to provide a good life for your family, but stress can prevent you from enjoying that life. Don’t allow stress and worries to rob you of the happiness you deserve!

Follow these easy strategies to help you banish daily worries and stress:

  1. Ask for help. If you’re constantly running on empty, your mind, body, and soul will suffer the repercussions of your tenacity. There’s no shame in asking for a helping hand. Sometimes, you’ll be able lean on a spouse, coworker, or friend, but other times you may have to hire help.
  • If your mounting responsibilities are barely allowing you the necessary time to eat and sleep, you may have too much on your plate. Streamline your responsibilities by creating a time-effective plan for crossing the items off of your to-do list in less time.
  • Most people are delighted to be needed and will be more than willing to help you. If housework is the culprit of your stress, divide the tasks equally amongst the family members in your household.
  1. Set aside time for yourself. What do you enjoy doing? Knitting, relaxing in a bubble bath, drawing, lounging in bed watching reruns of the Golden Girls? Indulge yourself in your favorite lazy activity a few times each week.
  •  Carve out a few hours each weekend to indulge in your favorite lazy activity. Choose at least one weeknight to relax after work. Sitting in a candlelit bubble bath while listening to your favorite CD and reading a magazine is an effective treatment for washing the day’s stresses away.
  • Refrain from feeling selfish for taking time for yourself. You may be a busy professional, a spouse, a parent and have a home to maintain all at the same time; however, taking two hours now to de-stress will save you from going into overdrive and possibly stressing out your loved ones later.
  1. Socialize! Making time for socializing with friends and family is a vital aspect of managing your stress levels. Friends and family make you laugh and provides you with a shoulder to lean on. This, in itself, will deplete your stress levels exponentially.
  • If possible, designate one day per week (like Sundays) to spend time with extended family and friends, even if it is just over Zoom or the telephone. You could host a neighborhood barbeque in your backyard, host a Sport Sunday gathering, or simply have coffee with your closest pals once the pandemic is over.
  • Living far away from friends and family can truly dampen your ability to socialize. Although currently you may be under restrictions due to the pandemic, you may still be able to meet friends at church, at the park with your kids.  When you are able to be out and about again, check out the community meeting site, MeetUp.com to find a group of likeminded folks.
  • When hosting events in your home, avoid fretting about the details. This will counteract your efforts to de-stress! Have a simple plan, such as using paper plates, napkins and plastic utensils for easy cleanup. Perhaps you can order pizza rather than cooking.

Stress seems like a normal part of life, but it doesn’t have to be that way if you’re willing to put your sanity first. Most of the time there’s a simple fix to the challenges that are causing you stress. Simply readjust the way you perceive the issues and how you address them. Both beauty and stress are in the eye of the beholder!

With a bit of creative thinking and time management, there are ways to find peace in your daily chaos. When you turn off the outside chaos, it gives you a chance to revel in all that is good and right with your world. And when you do this, you emerge with renewed energy and a fresh new attitude!

Be happy

Reduce your stress by following these tips to enjoy more peace in your life:

1. Read a good book. If you’re one of many who enjoy reading, this may be just what you need. You can spend some time immersed in a different place or time, which will help you regain your calm. If you have a hard time focusing for long periods of time, try an audio book instead.

2. Listen to uplifting music. Music has always had wonderful and mysterious powers. It’s used to calm children, the elderly, and even animals during times of stress and angst. Play music that appeals to you. Dance, sing along, or just sit back and listen to its beautiful melody.

3. Reflect and meditate. Focus on everything that’s good and right with your life. Think of those you love and what you hope for them in the future. Think about your own future as well and what you hope to achieve in your lifetime.

* Close your eyes, sit in a comfortable chair, or lie down on your bed. Block out all sources of stress and think only positive thoughts.

4. Enjoy some family time. Spending time with those you love is often a great stress reliever. Choose a fun activity that you can all enjoy. You may want to play a board game or pop some popcorn and watch a movie together.

* It really doesn’t matter what you do as long as you can have some fun and relax together.

5. Get some assistance from the experts. Many noted authors have written invaluable books on the topics of de-stressing and de-cluttering your life. You can even purchase these books in an audio format and listen to them during your commute.

* When you’re stuck in traffic, rather than getting upset, why not turn this time into a way to de-stress?

6. Slow down. Take your time, stop and smell the roses, and listen to the birds chirp. Everything you need so desperately to accomplish will still be there waiting for you five minutes later. It’s a beautiful world out there! Do everything you can to make sure you enjoy every minute of it.

About Fran Watson

Work from home Career Counsellor helping people with resumes, cover letters and interview tips. Recently published an e-book on Resumes and Cover Letters That Work (www.franwatson.ca). Member of Toastmasters and life-long learner.
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