We all face stress in our lives from time to time, and it can sometimes be a positive force – for example, for keeping you safe from danger or helping you to complete work by an important deadline. But in other contexts, stress may be less than helpful.
This is why, here at Counselling Central, we thought we would list just some of the healthiest ways to lessen the stress that you may feel in your day-to-day life.
Taking control of the problem
However much stress you may be under and whatever its origin, there are always steps that you can take to lessen or resolve it.
A passive attitude that you can’t do anything about the problem will only make your stress worse, whereas taking control of a situation is empowering and enables you to find a solution that suits you rather than someone else.
Avoiding unhealthy behaviours
Developing healthy ways to deal with the stresses in our lives is crucial. But all too often, many people – especially men – turn to unhealthy stress relievers such as drinking too much, smoking or procrastinating. Others may zone out in front of the computer or try to fill their days with as much activity as possible to try to avoid having to confront whatever they find stressful.
The problem with these methods for dealing with stress is that while they may provide some temporary relief, they do not tackle the cause of the stress and often simply introduce new problems.
Accepting what you can’t change
While this may seem to contradict an earlier tip in this article, it’s true that there may be certain difficult situations – for example, a terminal illness in the family or the loss of a job due to redundancy – that you are unable to do much to change.
However, you can still control the stress that you feel in relation to such situations by accepting the things that you genuinely can’t change, while concentrating on the things over which you do have control, such as looking for a new job.
Creating and strengthening social connections
Calling upon your social network of relatives, friends and colleagues is one of the most powerful and healthy things that you can do to relieve stress. Simply calling a friend and discussing a problem with them can ease your worries and give you a different perspective on a troubling situation.
The stronger the relationships that you build with others, the better the position you will be in to cope with all of the stresses that life can bring. So, you should be sure to reach out to work colleagues, schedule regular meetings with current friends and take every opportunity that you can to meet new people, such as by joining a club or taking a class.
Adopting a healthy lifestyle
While exercise and a healthy diet may not tackle the cause of your stress, it can certainly ensure that your body is better able to handle it.
From reducing your consumption of caffeine and sugar to avoiding alcohol, cigarettes and drugs and getting enough sleep, there are many changes that you can make to your lifestyle to better equip you in your management of stress.
The above are not the only healthy and effective ways to deal with stress, with others including taking the time to help other people, making time for fun and relaxation and simply adopting a more positive attitude to life in general.
If you are struggling to cope with stress and would appreciate additional help, please feel free to contact Counselling Central about the therapy services that we can provide.