17 November 2020

How to Cope With Stress

Stress kills. Yes, you heard it right. When you go through prolonged stress, this not only corrodes your mental health but may also lead to heart disease and diabetes.

Our mental health services are in crisis as we wad through today’s life pressures that are at an all-time high – from social media stress to unpaid leaves and job insecurities. Today, over 57% of people in the UK who feel stressed report getting depression. What’s more, 61% of stress victims develop anxiety. However, perhaps the most critical stat on stress is one that estimates about 32% of stress sufferers tend to have suicidal thoughts and 16% actually end up inflicting self-harm.

That said, whilst stress can be devastating, the good news is you can do something in managing and taking back control of your mental wellbeing. Let’s look at 5 tips you can use to cope with stress.

5 Tips for coping with stress

You can experience either positive stress or negative stress. With positive stress, we get anxious in unfamiliar but exciting situations such as wedding arrangements.

On the other hand, negative stress is the common and notorious one. It includes work stress, bills, school assignments, death, accidents, and overdue loans.

The steps below will enable you to handle and manage any form of stress successfully.

1. Note down what stresses you

Managing stress begins with being able to pinpoint your stress causers accurately. You can write down in a diary whenever you start feeling stressed and note what you did that calmed you down. Besides, always analyze your attitudes, excuses and habits to understand your stressors fully.

2. Practice to avoid, alter and accept your stressors

Easier said than done, but avoiding any individuals and situations that stress you out goes a long way to reducing your stress levels. Learn to say No. If you cannot avoid, then alter the stress by changing your way of communicating or operating in your daily routines. On the other hand, stress caused by the death of a loved one cannot be avoided; the best thing you can do is accept the situation.

3. Regular exercising

As you may already know, our bodies release endorphins when we exercise –this feel-good hormone can help alleviate stress levels. Exercising also distracts us from our stressful routines. The good thing about exercising to relieve stress is that it doesn’t have to be rigorous or gym-based. You can practice simple rhythmic exercises such as dancing to music, walking your dog or cycling to a grocery and they will be as effective.

4. Communicate more

Well, sharing is caring, and a problem shared is a problem halved. I am sure you’ve heard these popular phrases. You should apply them rightly whenever you’re feeling stressed. Face to face communication helps cascade hormones responsible for countering the flight or fight stress symptom. Moreover, communicating relieves anxiety and depression, especially when done regularly with friends and family.

5. Manage your time

Most of the youth are stressed because of time constraints. Try to gauge how frequently time plays part in your stressful situations, and you’ll understand why it's important to manage your time better. Better time management involves;

  • Prioritizing tasks
  • Breakdown and segregate projects
  • Delegate duties

Final comments

While stress is unavoidable in our day-to-day lives, these 5 tips should help you better deal with it. Remember to maintain a healthy lifestyle by avoiding excess sugar, excessive drinking of alcohol, smoking and caffeine to avoid negative stress. We all deserve a shot at a happy and fruitful life.

You may also like: Stress and Weight Loss: What’s its Impact?

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