November is just a few weeks away and with the weather changing and flu season arriving, you might be feeling a little stressed out. This year has added a lot to the everyday stress that we already face, so it might be wise to point out that the first week of November is actually National Stress Awareness Month. This week is going to provide lots of great resources for you to help handle your stress while also reaching out to others to help with their own stress. These ten tips will help you to learn more about stress and how you can maintain it without forcing you to spend a lot of money.
1. Recognize Stress
During National Stress Awareness Month, you might take the time out of your day to recognize stress. Stress actually affects people in many different ways, so you will have to learn more about your body so you can learn what triggers you and how your body copes with stress. Stress can present itself in many different ways. For instance, some people might feel fatigued, while others battle with restlessness. You may even feel both. Some people will have physical symptoms like heartburn or stomach pains, while other people will deal with panic attacks and racing thoughts. There are symptoms online that you can look at, but your best option is to talk to your doctor to get on the right track.
2. Listen to Music
If you’re looking for a great way to reduce the stress in your life then listening to music is a wonderful option. In fact, music has even been proven to reduce stress in most people, so you can feel happy knowing that science backs your favorite songs. Of course, not all music works for everyone, so you will have to toy around to see what works for you. You might also consider moving around to the music as this will actually help you combat stress even more. Feel free to blast the music every now and then too. It will help you unwind while allowing your body and mind to move through stress. This is one of the cheapest ways to help your mental health and it might even make you feel happier.
3. Reach Out
When you’re feeling stressed out, it is important not to distance yourself from the world. This might seem really hard in today’s day and age, but there are ways around the restrictions that covid-19 has brought to the world. Rather than keep to yourself, make a date to call someone or video chat. If you have friends willing to do this weekly then you can easily add it to your routine to help you vent, laugh, and get rid of your stress. Of course, for some people, a simple text is all that is needed to keep up to date we those we love Humans do need social interaction, and when we don’t get it we are at risk for depression and other mental and physical illnesses. So, if you’re feeling stressed or you are at risk for stress or depression then reach out. There is always someone to talk to, they might just be in an unexpected place.
4. Get Outside
Fresh air can work wonders on your stress levels. Getting outside can help you to blow off some steam while making your overall health skyrocket. If you’re getting outside, try to exercise as well as this will help you relieve even more stress. Of course, you still shouldn’t go into packed areas and you should bring a mask with you just in case you spot other people. Other than that, you should be good to talk around your neighborhood, give your pets a walk, play ball in an empty park, and so on. As long as you keep your distance and don’t let others pet your dog, you should be set just to have some fun. You might find that this is one of the best ways to get rid of your stress and it can be one of the cheapest, too.
5. Breathing Exercises
It might not seem like it but breathing deep is one of the best ways to handle stress in a pinch. A lot of the time, when we are stressed out, we tend to take shallow breaths that don’t work as well to nourish our bodies. Taking a short breath will allow you to bring oxygen throughout the body, which can help you to relax. If you’re having trouble keeping this in mind, then you might turn to exercises like yoga or meditation to help you out. However, there are other breathing exercises you can try if these don’t work out for you or you need something in a pinch. The internet is rich with resources here, so browse around and find what is right for you. If covid-19 is something you’re stressing over then these exercises will actually help to strengthen your lungs which can help you fight the illness if you do catch it.
6. Try to Maintain Normalcy
Right now, most people’s stress levels are going to be elevated. That doesn’t mean you have to give in and put your life on hold. Sure, you shouldn’t be going on leisurely shopping trips and concerts might be a bit out of the question, but you can live your life as closely as possible as you used to. For instance, if you used to wake up at 5 am for work, then continue to do so. Go about the same routine of getting ready and preparing for your day. This means you should do the same if you have kids that are doing distant learning. If you have scheduled meal times, keep to them. Let your schedule flow as if you were going through the motions of living life in the world we used to know. It will take away from the spontaneous nature of life, which can help eliminate the extra stress.
7. Take Breaks
Even before things got weird earlier in the year, a lot of us actually failed to take breaks as often as we should. You should take frequent ten-minute breaks to help your mind and body unwind from everything that you are working on. For starters, you can take a few minutes to jog around the block, do some yoga moves, or even just make a cup of tea. Even if you feel like you don’t need a break, you should still take one. Your body will thank you for it and it can help prevent too much stress from building up, which can cause burn out. These breaks are especially important if you’re working from home as this environment isn’t as structured as an office.
8. Treat Your Self
Living in a world where we’re stuck at home all of the time can be stressful. You’re less likely to visit a restaurant or bar to blow off steam with friends. Many recreational facilities are closed. Plus, shopping isn’t the wisest of ideas. However, you should remember that you should treat yourself every now and then. Consider gabbing a new plant for your home office, getting yourself a new book, or even ordering dinner out. The small things in life can help you to feel better about life, which can help release some of the built-up stress that you might have.
9. Online Counseling
If you’re really struggling with stress then you might want to consider signing up for online counseling. This is something you will have to pay for but you will be surprised by how helpful it can be. Online counseling gives you the freedom to stay home where it is safe, while still allowing you to talk out your feelings. Of course, you should also make sure the counseling is what you’re looking for. There are many different types of counseling to sign up for, so make sure you’re getting exactly what you need. You might also ask around for recommendations, so you know you’re getting a counselor that is reliable.
10. Be an Ally
Stress Awareness Week is more than just learning about your own stress and finding ways to combat it. During this week, you should research ways that you can become an ally for those that also suffer from stress. Sometimes, you might just need to reach out to a friend, while other times you might have to work a little harder to help a friend find the help that they need. You can also spread information on the stress that will allow other people to get the help that they need.
Stress Awareness Week might be a bit more important this year with everything that is going on. These quick tips will help you make the most out of the week, so you can truly work to ease your stress while also helping out others.