Stress happens to all of us. Work, school, health, family and relationships are just some of the many causes of stress. Sometimes it’s only short-term, like when you’re trying to get that assignment done on time, and sometimes it can be long lasting and very overwhelming.
Although in some cases stress works positively on the body – as it puts us in a fight-or-flight mode which can help ensure we meet those crucial deadlines at work or school – when it is long lasting it can detrimental to both your mental and physical health. So if, and when, you’re feeling overwhelmed by the stresses in your life or if you want to avoid stressing out; these are our top five suggestions to help you feel less stressed:
1.Drink Plenty of Water
Water is crucial for the proper functioning of all of the organs in the body, so when you’re dehydrated your body can’t work at its best and therefore you are increasing the stress it is under. Dehydration also causes an increase in cortisol levels, which is a stress hormone. So by staying hydrated you can avoid adding extra and unnecessary stress such as dehydration to yourself and your body.
2.Ensure You’re Eating a Balanced Diet
I’m sure we can all admit to turning to our comfort foods when we’ve been overwhelmed by stress. But eating nutritious, clean, whole foods can help to regulate hormone levels, including the stress hormones. Of course we are not encouraging dieting or even cutting things out of your diet, and having a treat every now and then is most definitely okay, but making sure you’re eating a balanced and nutrient-filled diet will help reduce the effects that stress has on your body and well-being.
3.Get Enough Sleep
Sleep is so important for the functioning of the human body and mind. It allows your body to recover and ensure all of your body systems and organs are working at their optimum levels. Avoiding using technology before bedtime, dimming the lights and partaking in relaxing activities before going to bed such as reading or meditating are great ways to improve your quality of sleep.
Finding some time everyday to exercise is so important in helping to reduce stress. It gives you the chance to shift your focus to something other than the things that are overwhelming you, and the release of endorphins into the body can improve your mood and create positive feelings within your body. It doesn’t have to be anything too strenuous, even just a 30 minute walk on your lunch break to get you out in the fresh air and up and moving will help to combat stress.
5.Get a Massage! Of course!!
Making sure you have some time out for yourself is essential to help you to relax and distance yourself from all the things that are making you stress. Massage is a great way to allow your body and mind to relax, and relieve any muscle tension or tightness that may be caused when dealing with constant and long-lasting stress.