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10 Ways You Can Relieve Stress Today
Stress can come from many sources, from big projects to schoolwork to finances to relationships. Many people feel pulled between their work, school, families, and friendships, all of which can contribute to an individual’s stress levels.
If you’re looking to relieve stress, you’re in luck: here are 10 ways you can relieve stress today.
What causes stress?
Stress is the body’s response to a challenge or demand. This response puts the body in a state of high alert.1
Some causes of stress can include:
- Strained relationships
- Job expectations
- Financial instability
- Worry or fear
- Feeling like you aren’t in control
- Feeling pressured
- Getting married or divorced
- The death of a loved one
- Emotional problems (such as anxiety and depression)
- Illnesses or diseases
- Traumatic events
How to Relieve Stress Today
Meditating has been proven to relieve the flight or fight response caused by stress. Meditation can help relax the mind, which will flip off this response and calm the body down.1
There are many different meditation techniques including guided imagery, deep breathing, mindfulness meditation, and yoga meditation. You can study different meditation techniques and find what works best for you and your meditation goals. Additionally, there are many apps and websites that offer free or purchasable meditation sessions.
Sometimes, you may get wrapped up too much in your obligations that you forget to take time for yourself. Taking time each day to enjoy a current or new hobby is one way you can begin relieving stress in your life.
A study cited by The Australian Government Department of Health found that creative hobbies such as writing, songwriting, art, and music lead to an increase in emotional well-being that lasts into the next day. That means taking time to use your creativity and enjoy different hobbies can improve your mindset over time to be more positive.2
Spend Time with Family and Friends
Oftentimes, stress can make you feel like you’re being pulled in multiple different directions. There are many different tasks you have to complete throughout the day related to work, school, and family, and sometimes people will forgo spending time with their loved ones as a way to meet their obligations.
Make sure that you put aside some time for your loved ones. Have a family movie night, go out to dinner together, or plan to spend a day at the park to give yourself a break while also making time for those you love.
Eating a healthy diet can help you feel less stressed each day. Certain foods are proven to boost your body’s serotonin levels, which is a chemical that can regulate your mood and reduce anxiety and depression. Some foods, according to WebMD, that raise the body’s serotonin levels include whole-grain products, oranges, spinach, fatty fish, pistachios, and avocados.3
Healthy eating can give your body energy each day, which can help you feel less hungry and more energized. This can help you focus on your tasks, which can reduce your stress levels.
Getting up and moving is another way you can relieve stress. When you exercise, your body produces endorphins that can help you feel better. Exercise has also been proven to reduce the effects of the flight or fight state.4
When you start an exercise routine, find an activity that works within your schedule and physical limitations. Yoga, tai chi, and aerobic exercises are all great options that can help calm your mind and reduce stress levels.
Stop Drinking Alcohol
People who drink alcohol are more likely to be stressed than those who don’t. Alcohol increases the amount of cortisol, a hormone that affects the body’s reward system and rewires the brain’s perception of normal. Over time, someone who drinks alcohol will need more to satisfy the brain’s reward system.5
While sipping on a glass of alcohol may appear to reduce your stress, over time it can create a reliance on alcohol to feel better. Try to use other relaxation methods to avoid getting into a drinking habit.
Manage Your Time
If you feel as though the sheer amount of daily obligations you have each day causes stress, work on finding ways to manage your time. This could be rearranging your schedule to better allow yourself to complete the tasks, such as running errands after work instead of planning to do them on the weekend to save yourself trips.
You should also learn to say “no” to extra obligations and tasks if you are busy. While it may be challenging to say no to someone, especially if it’s a family member or close friend, remember that you need to balance your schedule realistically.
Talk to Others
If you’re stressed, opening up and talking to others about it can be one way to help find a solution. For example, if you feel stressed due to projects at work, talk to your boss about ways to better manage these tasks.
If you need and are able to, you can also hire a counselor to help you work through your problems. A therapist may be able to help you find ways to better understand your stress while giving you tips to build healthy relationships.
Find your Triggers
Sometimes, you may need help identifying the source of stress. Is it a person? A place? Or maybe it’s a big event, such as a wedding.
Knowing what causes your stress can help you identify steps to reducing it. You can find ways to eliminate or lessen your interactions with the stress trigger in your life.
Get Enough Sleep
A lack of sleep can worsen your stress levels because you feel less able to perform your tasks when you aren’t well-rested. Getting enough sleep can help give you energy and feel better able to tackle your obligations.
Try to sleep at the same time each night, and avoid doing activities such as exercising or drinking caffeine in the evening that can throw off your sleep cycle.
Work to Relieve Stress Today!
While stress is inevitable, try taking a small step to reduce the amount of stress in your life today. Seeking out different strategies can help you find what works best and allow you to relieve your stress levels over time.
Saber Healthcare is an organization that provides services to more than 115 buildings across the states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, Indiana, Delaware, and Florida. To learn more about our company and the services we provide, click here.
Saber Healthcare is an organization dedicated to providing consultant services to long-term care providers. This article is for informational purposes and is not meant to be seen as professional advice. Please consult with a medical expert before relying on the information provided.
- “How to Manage Stress and Relax More.” Saber Healthcare Group. 2 December 2020. Accessed 27 May 2022. Link: https://www.saberhealth.com/news/blog/manage-stress
- “Purposeful activity – hobbies.” Australian Department Government of Health. 11 July 2019. Accessed 27 May 2022. Link: https://www.headtohealth.gov.au/meaningful-life/purposeful-activity/hobbies#:~:text=Research%20shows%20that%20people%20with,skills%20and%20relationships%20with%20others.
- Zelman, Kathleen. “Foods that Help Tame Stress.” Nourish, WebMD. 16 November 2021. Accessed 27 May 2022. Link: https://www.webmd.com/diet/ss/slideshow-diet-for-stress-management
- “Exercise and stress: Get moving to manage stress.” Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER). 18 August 2020. Accessed 17 May 2022. Link: https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/exercise-and-stress/art-20044469#:~:text=Exercise%20in%20almost%20any%20form,fit%20it%20into%20your%20routine.
- T, Buddy. Block, Daniel B, ed. “The Link Between Stress and Alcohol.” DotDash Media, VeryWellMind. 25 June 2021. Accessed 27 May 2022. Link: https://www.verywellmind.com/the-link-between-stress-and-alcohol-67239#:~:text=Alcohol%20causes%20higher%20amounts%20of,how%20it%20responds%20to%20stress.