Scientists across the world are keen to find out more about our bodies and minds. They want to understand exactly how we work and are put together, and they are discovering more and more every day. One of the subjects that they study regularly is stress. It is important to know why it occurs, what it does, and how it affects our health, not just physically but mentally too.
We know that leaving stress to build up untreated and ignored is bad for us. It can cause type II diabetes, obesity, heart problems, ulcers, high blood pressure, stroke, depression, anxiety, and studies show that it can even be the cause behind some forms of cancer. Therefore it is important not to ignore the symptoms of stress when you feel them, and to avoid it where possible. Here are some of the ways it can be done.
Before we can avoid stress and make a conscious effort to bypass it, we need to know how it feels and what causes it – every individual is different in this regard. Knowing what makes you feel stressed is an important element. Once you know, you can more easily avoid those situations that make you feel uneasy and concerned.
Once you have worked out what causes your stress levels to rise and what ‘triggers’ you to feel more stressed, you should try to avoid the situation, place, or person behind it. This won’t always be possible, of course, and if this is the case then you will need to meet the issue head-on, but, to make life easier and happier, avoidance is probably one of the best things you can do; your stress levels will reduce, and you will enjoy your life much more.
If you don’t like the idea of avoiding the things that make you stressed, or if you can’t avoid them because they are part of your everyday life (perhaps someone you work with, for example), then you must try to solve the problem at hand, thus reducing your stress levels.
Think about what it is that is causing you the most stress. What could be done to remove that element of stress from your life? Are you being asked to do too much at work? Then start to look for another job, or speak to your employer about the problem; they may not have realized that you were under so much pressure. Do you need to pay for a repair but don’t have the savings? Look into getting a short term loan on this helpful page, and get the problem sorted out. After this, look into how you can save money in the future.
Whatever the issue, there will be a solution. Some will be easy, and some will be harder, but they will all be worth tackling if you want to reduce stress.
Relaxation is a great way to reduce your stress levels. If you have had a hard day and you are feeling tense, ensuring that you spend enough time relaxing will help your stress hormones (cortisol) reduce, and you will feel better for it. You might:
- Take a warm bath
- Listen to music
- Watch TV
- Play sports
- Be creative
- Go for a walk
- Have a massage
- Do yoga
Plus there are many more relaxation techniques you can try. Depending on the time you have and what you enjoy doing, there will be something available that makes things easier for you and makes you feel much more at peace. When you relax, your muscles untense and your mind clears, and you may even be able to come up with a good solution to your problems.
Better Time Management
Something that can often create stress, or at least add to already high-stress levels making them unbearable is bad time management. We’re all extremely busy, and more and more work and requests from friends and family become piled up on us during the day so that by the time we would typically stop everything and try to relax or even go to sleep, our minds are reeling.
Better time management would help to deal with this situation. Look at all the tasks you need to do and make a list that works in order of priority. The most urgent and important tasks should go at the top, and the ones that can wait for another day if they have to should be at the bottom. Work in order even if the urgent and important tasks are boring or difficult. Once they are done, you will be free to work on the rest, and by the end of the day, you will have done everything you needed to, and feel accomplished too.
Making time to have fun, either by yourself or with friends and family, is crucial if you want to reduce your stress levels. Firstly, planning something exciting, whether it’s a day out to the seaside or a trip to the theatre or just a day at home with the kids watching DVDs, will give you something to look forward to. This can be a big step in reducing stress because you will always have this event in your mind and it can be something that helps you forget your troubles and just keep working towards getting there.
You’ll be far more able to deal with the less pleasant aspects of your life when there is something exciting up ahead, shining like a beacon.
Look After Your Physical Health
Your health, or rather, health problems, can cause added stress, and ironically that stress can then make your health problems worse. Remember also that stress is always going to be easier to deal with if you are in good health. Therefore, looking after your physical health should be a priority when it comes to reducing stress as well.
When you are fit and well you will have more self-confidence, and that will help to lower stress levels – you know you are doing well in life and therefore have less to be stressed about, for example.