How have you been feeling lately? Are you stressed out?
Unfortunately, stress is part of life. But that doesn’t mean you should just ignore the effects it has on your body and mind.
Here, you’ll find some suggestions that may help you manage your stress. Don’t forget to check out the vocabulary list at the end if you need some help!
Regular exercise is an excellent way to reduce your overall stress and anxiety. When you do physical activity, your brain releases substances that boost your mood.
If you can, try doing any form of exercise 30 minutes per day, five days a week. Short on time? Even a 10-minute walk can help!
2. Do breathing exercises
Taking deep breaths is a fantastic way to decrease anxious feelings. Try belly breathing next time your stress is rising:
1. Sit or lie down comfortably.
2. Place a hand on your belly, under your ribs. The other hand should be on your chest.
3. Inhale deeply through your nose; let your belly push your hand outward. Make sure your chest isn’t moving.
4. Purse your lips (as though you’re going to whistle), and exhale. Use the hand on your belly to help you push all the air out.
5. Do this combination between 3 and 10 times.
3. Talk it out
If you have someone you trust, try talking to them about how you feel. Talking can decrease tension as you vent your thoughts and feelings. The person you speak to can help you make sense of your problem, look at the issue from a new perspective, and help you find solutions (if there are any). Most importantly, you’ll likely realize that you’re not alone!
4. Write it down
If you don’t have anyone to talk to (or you just don’t feel like talking), try writing in a journal. This can be a very effective stress reduction technique. Much like talking to a friend, journaling will help reduce your stress by releasing your negative thoughts and clearing your mind. It can also help with problem-solving: Write down your issues along with any goals or plans that you can think of. Seeing everything in front of you can help you identify possible solutions.
5. Limit your time online
Be mindful about going online!
The internet is full of ever-changing news and facts about the problems in the world—we receive more information than we can handle. It’s essential to give your mind a break from the continuous negativity.
You should also limit when you go online. Think about it: If you look at your phone to check for pandemic news first thing in the morning, it’s going to affect the mood of your entire day.
One more thing: Always ensure you’re getting your information from reliable news sources!
6. Eat well
For many of us, stress leads to eating unhealthy foods that contain a lot of fat, salt, or sugar. While it may seem like those foods will make you feel better immediately, they’re much worse in the long run. They’ll leave you tired, irritable, anxious, and just blah.
Instead, try to eat a balanced diet (on a regular schedule, if possible) consisting of healthy fats, lean proteins, and colourful fruits and vegetables. And don’t forget to drink water!
Be kind to yourself
When you have a lot of stressors in your life, it can be hard to carry on with your daily activities. Try to take care of yourself—in whatever way works best for you—to manage your stress and get through the day.
- Stress (noun): Mental worry caused by problems in life, work, etc.
- Manage (verb): To keep something under control
- Reduce (verb): Decrease; make smaller in size, number, or amount
- Anxiety (noun): A feeling of fear or nervousness
- Substance (noun): A specific kind of material
- Boost (verb): To increase in amount
- Anxious (adjective): Afraid or nervous
- Belly (noun): Stomach
- Ribs (noun): The curved bones of the chest that connect to the spine
- Chest (noun): The front part of your body between your neck and stomach
- Inhale (verb): To breathe in
- Purse (verb): To form your lips into a tight circle or line
- Exhale (verb): To breathe out
- Perspective (noun): A way of thinking about and understanding something
- Tension (noun): A feeling of nervousness that makes you unable to relax
- Vent (verb): To express an emotion
- Journal (noun): A book in which you write down your personal experiences and thoughts
- Mindful (adjective): Aware of something
- Continuous (adjective): Continuing without stopping
- Pandemic (noun): A situation in which a disease spreads quickly among many people
- Mood (noun): The way someone feels
- Reliable (adjective): Able to be trusted
- Irritable (adjective): Becoming angry or annoyed easily
- Blah (adjective): Without energy
- Stressor (noun): Something that makes you worried or anxious
- Carry on (phrasal verb): To continue doing something