How to manage stress

bike and sea

Does everything you hear about sound stressful?  Sometimes this can just feel too overwhelming so here are ten ideas to incorporate into your days and give you a bit of a boost.

1/ Be active - exercise won't make your stress disappear, but it will reduce some of the emotional intensity that you're feeling,

clearing your thoughts and letting you deal with your problems more calmly. Find what you enjoy, dancing around the kitchen, a gentle walk, a more vigerous jog, the more you enjoy it the more you'll want to do it. Classes in yoga, pilates, dance etc either in person or streamed can be great to get you going too.

2/ Make time for you - recognising you deserve and need time and space for yourself. That massage or Reflexology appointment you've been meaning to book is perfect If your not able to leave home finding a comfy spot and trying self-massage can be a good substitute to help sooth your nervous system and ease pain.

3/ Focus on Breathing – focusing on your breath or changing the way you breathe can make a big difference to your stress levels, breathing techniques can calm your body and your brain in just a few minutes. Slowing down your breath and taking 10 deep breaths really does help, focusing on the in breath and the out breath helps bring you back into the moment.

4/ Create Artwork - getting in touch with your creative side may have been easy for you as a child, however it’s never too late to find something you enjoy again. Adult colouring books have risen in popularity, knitting can be medative and you may be surprised as your hidden talents emerge. 

5/ Gratitude - helps you recognize all the things you have to be thankful for. Whether you're grateful for a sunny day or the bus arrving on time thinking about the good things you have in life really is beneficial for your mental health.  

6/ Connect with people - if we manage to find ways of connecting with friends and family they can help often help us see things in a different way and they can often help as a stress buffer. 

7/ Devote time to helping others - when you feel down, do some good. volunteering can make us feel happier, as well as reducing lonliness and giving sense of purpose. Helping others can often help distract us from our own problems and help us appreciate what we do have.

8/ Enjoy nature - enviroments can have an impact on our stress levels and nature heals. If you can't get out or it feels like you live in a concrete jungle looking at nature scenes or watching nature programs can improve your mood.

9/ Singing - in a choir or in the shower, singing has been shown to be joyful, uplifting and good for your health. It generates a sense of positive mood, happiness and enjoyment, such positive feelings also counteract feelings of stress or anxiety and help to distract people from internal negative thoughts and feelings.

10/ Avoid information overload - In times of crisis, over-consumption of the news and social media can have a real detrimental effect on good mental health. Adding some Positive news can only be beneficial.