What are some lifestyle changes for stress that work?
Everyone knows that changes will be needed to cope with stress. Below are some practical tips that you can use starting today. Some tips may be easier to do than others.
Don't be discouraged by the list.
Pick one that you believe you could follow through. Being able to make even one minor change is an excellent start.
Once you gain the confidence in yourself, select a second lifestyle change. By following this simple step-by-step approach, eventually you will see significant changes and more importantly, less stress.
Quit smoking. Smoking does give temporary relief at the price of damage to the body permanently at a later time. This may be the most difficult thing to give up especially when you are under stress. Put this down as a long-term goal.
Don't use alcohol to cope. It simply masks the problems (by numbing your brain) and will lead to more serious problems down the road.
Avoid using prescription sedatives when possible. Ultimately, you'll need to get to the root of the problem or it will continue to be there.
Attitude is everything. Although not easy, it is essential that you work towards developing a positive attitude towards life's challenges.
Recognize that many things in life you have no control over. Focus on those that you have some control over. Find out things that triggers anxiety so that you are better prepared when it happens again.
Establish or re-establish relationships with friends and family members.
Mild, moderate or vigorous exercise allows you to "release" the stress and actually makes your body more able to cope.
Make a list of things you need to do (if that's what stressing you out). Prioritize them and work on them one at a time. Realize that you can not get to all the tasks at once.
Listen to music if you enjoy it. Music therapy has been shown to be able to modify a person's emotion and mood and can help with reducing stress.
Relaxation exercises. Set aside 10-20 minutes daily or every other day. Sit comfortably, close your eyes imagine relaxing all the muscles in your body. Breathe through your nose and become aware of your breathing. Have background music playing if you desire it.
Updated: June 20,2010