If you're like me, you get stressed a whole hell of a lot. It's really easy to get overwhelmed when you're juggling multiple jobs, friend groups, activities and hobbies on a day to day basis, while still trying to get a decent amount of sleep and not let your body soften to gelatine-like levels.
I am stressed by nature, meaning that very small, insignificant things will stress me out, basically every day i.e. someone cutting in front of me at the drive-thru will send me into a mental frenzy for at least 15-minutes. And which you might not be as anxious as I am, I think we can all agree that stress is bullshit and no one likes to have an uncomfortable amount of pressure on them.
My boyfriend is maybe the least stressed human being I know. Rarely does this guy break a sweat, which is both admirable and intimidating. If anything, he's helped me learn to give less sh*ts and try to minimize my stress in some of these, easy ways.
1. Get a good long sleep
Sleep can heal pretty much anything - so obviously, stress is included. This might mean going to bed earlier for some of you, as many people out there work a 9-5, but getting those extra hours is totally worth it. Sleep is necessary for your body to function in tons of ways, like solidifying your memories or regenerating skin cells.
Sleep deprivation can cause depression, mood swings, and impaired judgment. Even just an extra 60 to 90 minutes of some good R&R could make a big difference.
2. Make regular time for friends and family
You wouldn't think you need a reminder for this but if you're an introvert like me, you can go days, if not weeks, without hanging out with friends because you just don't feel like leaving the house. I'm telling you though, a study at Queen's University just revealed that spending time with loved ones can alleviate stress, because you're sharing your burdens with others. Just make sure you're hanging out with friends that don't stress you out (we all have them, it's just counterintuitive.)
3. Don't bring your work home with you
I know, I know. It's just an e-mail or you HAVE to get back to this co-worker. Except it's after 5 and you've been stressing out all day. Drop this. For the sake of your sanity. Set up out of office replies and establish boundaries. Studies show that bringing your work home gives you zero emotional and psychological favours.
Mindfulness can take a lot of people by surprise, but it's literally just being present in that moment. Catching yourself, acknowledging your own presence and thoughts. Practicing mindfulness, yoga or even breathing patterns can actually change the map of your brain, meaning that the areas spent on processing stress and anxiety actually shrink, making you physically less likely to worry. You can try meditating for a deeper mental release - I like to watch guided meditation videos when I'm super stressed - and I almost always feel better.
Truly, a good sweat sesh can help you feel better than almost any icecream tub or chocolate bar (except maybe Hershey's Cookies & Cream bc that shit's b o m b). Ever since I discovered that exercise is one of the top recommended treatments for anxiety and stress disorders, I've been finding peace in the weight room ever since. If you can't get happy or chill, trick your brain with endorphins. Added bonus? Your tired muscles will help clock that nice, long sleep.
6. Read - just not receipts
According to the University of Sussex, just 6 minutes of reading a day can greatly reduce stress levels. Reading takes you out of your head and can transport you somewhere where you actually want to be. Turn off your tech for a little bit and pick up that paperback bb.
It should surprise no one that actually going outdoors can do such great things for your mood. As humans, we're meant to be out and about in the world - not curling up over our monitors. Nature can do amazing things for your immune system, mood and can even help alleviate pain.
So try and calm down with a couple of these, you'll be cool as hell in no time.