Stress Management: How to Cope with Stress

It may seem that there’s nothing you can do about your stress level. The bills aren’t going to stop coming, there will never be more hours in the day for all your errands, and your career or family responsibilities will always be demanding. But you have a lot more control than you might think. In fact, the simple realization that you’re in control of your life is the foundation of stress management.

Here are a few ways in which you can cope with stress :

Identify Unhealthy Coping Mechanism

  • Social withdrawal
  • Oversleeping
  • Overeating sweet or fatty foods
  • Mindlessly watching the TV without caring what you watch
  • Using medication to relax you
  • Smoking
  • Drinking too much alcohol
  • Taking out stress on others (e.g. in arguments or furious outbursts)

Be Physically Active

  • Dance to your favorite song
  • Walk to the store instead of driving
  • Walk your dog, or borrow someone else’s for half an hour
  • Take the stairs every time there’s an option
  • Find an exercise buddy, and go to classes together

Build and Maintain Relationships

  • Ask a colleague to lunch
  • Call, text or email an old friend to catch up
  • Invite your exercise buddy for a walk and a chat
  • Schedule weekly meetups with at least one friend
  • Get to know new people by signing up for an evening class or joining a club
  • Consider volunteer work, which not only counteracts loneliness but also allows you to give back to the world in a way that’s profoundly satisfying.

Change Your Attitude

  • Think positive thoughts and say positive things
  • Stop overthinking every single thing
  • Set “worry periods” only allow yourself to stress out for a short period of time a day instead of the whole day long
  • Deliberately reframe life’s challenges – ask yourself what opportunities they might present
  • Make a gratitude list – what are you thankful for?
  • Engage in active problem solving
  • Find lessons
  • Put your problems into perspective – will you really care about the present difficulty in a month, or a year?
  • Avoid perfectionism. Set yourself realistic, practical goals

Develop a “Stress Relief” Toolkit

  • Walk in a naturally beautiful setting
  • Meditate
  • Interact with an animal
  • Book yourself a massage
  • Watch a comedy
  • Contact one of your best friends
  • Keep a journal
  • Make a cup of herbal tea
  • Have a hot bath with relaxing essential oils
  • Read a good book

You can control your stress levels with relaxation techniques that evoke the body’s relaxation response, a state of restfulness that is the opposite of the stress response. Regularly practicing these techniques will build your physical and emotional resilience, heal your body, and boost your overall feelings of joy and equanimity.

71 Comments Add yours

  1. emefasage says:

    Dancing 😅I do that a lot. It works so well. I totally agree. I’ve got minimal stress in my live cos I love to read too.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Garima says:

      Ah I like dancing too. The scientific reason for why dance has the ability to act as a stress reliever stems from the idea that when the body feels good, the mind does too. Any type of physical activity releases the neurotransmitter, endorphins, which serve to alleviate stress. Thank you for stopping by today. Glad you liked my post.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. emefasage says:

        I’m dancing as I’m reading now 😂

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Garima says:

        Hahahhahahha 2 in 1 👍🏼👍🏼👍🏼

        Liked by 1 person

  2. emefasage says:

    Reading aloud to yourself is even better.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Garima says:

      It’s soothing. It helps in focusing which is a great stress buster.

      Like

  3. This is so true. Simple things within our proximity, yet we fail to take up. I follow few of things mentioned, however walking with a dog, volunteering, regular meet ups, dancing is something I need to take it up.

    Thanks for writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Thanks great Manohar. I am glad you are taking steps to reduce stress everyday. Stress management is all about taking charge: of your lifestyle, thoughts, emotions, and the way you deal with problems. No matter how stressful your life seems, there are steps you can take to relieve the pressure and regain control.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Vihani says:

    Very well written ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Thank you Vihani. I am glad you liked it. Effective stress management, helps you break the hold stress has on your life, so you can be happier, healthier, and more productive. The ultimate goal is a balanced life, with time for work, relationships, relaxation, and fun and the resilience to hold up under pressure and meet challenges head on.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Garima says:

      Thank you for stopping by today. Glad to see you.

      Like

  5. i knew i had stress/depression, when i started falling asleep without even feeling of it..its pretty weird, no matter howmuch i sleep its never enough also i feel shaky all the time when i am stressing much, but thank you for this article..well written!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Thank you for sharing with us. You are brave to embrace your truth which is so awesome. Focus on self care. Self-care is a crucial part of your overall wellbeing and can influence many other aspects of your life. Whatever you choose to do, proceed with purpose and intent on bettering yourself in the process.

      Like

      1. i’ll sure try to,thank you so much❤

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Garima says:

        Most welcome. Take care and always remember that you are loved.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. inhiscare753 says:

    This post is quite informative. Great topic, thank you sharing some valid and insightful points. 🤗

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Thank you. I am glad you liked it. Each day, try to relax with a stress reduction technique. There are many tried and tested ways to reduce stress so try a few and see what works best for you. For example, try self-hypnosis which is very easy and can be done anywhere, even at your desk or in the car. One very simple technique is to focus on a word or phrase that has a positive meaning to you. Words such as “calm” “love” and “peace” work well, or you could think of a self-affirming mantra such as “I deserve calm in my life” or “Grant me serenity”.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. inhiscare753 says:

        You are indeed welcome. These are wonderful stress relieving techniques. Release, Let it go and flow down the stream. Refreshing waters burst forth. Thanks for sharing.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Garima says:

        You are most welcome. My biggest learning in life so far has been “nothing is blank and white. Everything is grey and grey is okay”

        Liked by 1 person

      3. inhiscare753 says:

        Yes, I definitely agree.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. edas07 says:

    You’re such a talented writer- very good advice!! I wish I could write as well as you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      It will come with practice. Just keep on writing 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. dadswithsons says:

    Hello, I am curious to know how you get the black background on the words like this?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Black background?

      Like

      1. dadswithsons says:

        Yes. I have selected the black background on my editor but it doesn’t seem to change. Can you see if it’s black?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Garima says:

        I can’t 😦

        Like

  9. Kim Petitt says:

    These are all great tips!
    Everyone deals with stress and the pressures and pitfalls of life tend to hit us most when we are overtired, sick and when we are out of our comfort zone. When our circumstances spin out of control, we feel stressed. As a Christian I believe that God is sovereign and is in control of our lives. I believe as I prioritize Him first (Matthew 6:33) He will give me everything I need.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Faith is very powerful. Take care.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Kim Petitt says:

        Indeed! God bless!!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. iamsomdeb says:

    Thanks for the nice tips. Thankfully I have a great bunch of friends who help me overlook stress. Have a nice day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      You are blessed to have great friends. Many materialistic things can act as a stress buster but friends form the pillar of it. They can be the best stress-busters, to relieve us of all our worries. A small chat with a close friend, a coffee date, a small hangout with them during the worst phases of our lives can prove to be the best medicine for our stressed life.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. iamsomdeb says:

    True that 👍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Glad you agree. Thank you for stopping by today.

      Like

  12. rolerrol says:

    This is so good. Thanks for sharing ways I can deal with stress.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      I am glad you liked my post. We all need to be more aware of stressors. Factors of the environment that trigger this reaction are called stressors. Examples include noises, aggressive behavior, a speeding car, scary moments in movies, or even going out on a first date. The more stressors we experience, the more stressed we tend to feel.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. I used to be very stressed at work and that carried over to home life. I found that simplifying my life…..cutting out anything unnecessary, helped. I asked myself does this activity – job or whatever make me happy? If not I made whatever changes were necessary. Also, if you have the space to do it, dig a vegetable garden and grow your own food. 1. It’s very soothing to renew our relationship with the soil, 2. You know exactly what has gone into making your food – no pesticides etc., and 3. It can help to reduce your living expenses. My wife and I now live of only one part time wage. We have so much time to relax and unwind – no stress.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Hi, gardening is soothing indeed. Planting a beautiful garden can be a great way to relieve stress. Whether you have a small patio to decorate or a vast amount of space to tend, the act of making your particular stretch of nature into a haven can be a stress reliever in itself, and the garden that you create can bring you even more peace. Thank you for stopping by my blog today.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. And thank you for stopping by my blog…and liking my poem. Much appreciated.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. Shell Vera says:

    Nice suggestions! I’m big on journaling when I feel stressed. I’ll record my thoughts and feelings, as well as what I’ve eaten.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Hi Shell, journaling is my favourite too. I do it everyday. Writing reduces stress as it helps individuals process their thoughts and emotions.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Liked, enjoyed reading; Toolkit is great, simple and effective…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Thank you Shyamal. I am glad you liked it. Thank you for stopping by my blog today.

      Like

  16. Michelle says:

    Wonderful tips. Thank you!

    Like

  17. Jamar Reed says:

    Yes, yes, and yes. I love it! Awesome tips. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Haha thank you Jamar. I am glad you liked them. Managing stress is all about taking charge: taking charge of your thoughts, your emotions, your schedule, your environment, and the way you deal with problems. The ultimate goal is a balanced life, with time for work, relationships, relaxation, and fun – plus the resilience to hold up under pressure and meet challenges head on. Thank you for stopping by my blog.

      Like

      1. Jamar Reed says:

        Thank you for posting it. Looking forward to reading more of your content 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Garima says:

        Will keep them coming 🙂

        Like

  18. BellaDour says:

    Helpful article. Love the list of practical tips. Journaling, dancing and interacting with people via meetups and evening class helps me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Hi Bella, journaling helps for sure. Journaling helps control your symptoms and improve your mood by: Helping you prioritize problems, fears, and concerns. Tracking any symptoms day-to-day so that you can recognize triggers and learn ways to better control them. Thank you for stopping by my blog today.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Susan says:

    Breathing from the tummy works well for me, and remembering to – when I’m stressed my breathing can be high up in the chest.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Hi Susan, Deep breathing is one of the best ways to lower stress in the body. This is because when you breathe deeply, it sends a message to your brain to calm down and relax. Breathing exercises are a good way to relax, reduce tension, and relieve stress. Thank you for stopping by my blog today and sharing your experience.

      Like

  20. Gottfried says:

    Relaxation techniques, here we go!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Ah yes. One way is to invoke the “relaxation response,” through a technique first developed in the 1970s at Harvard Medical School by cardiologist Dr. Herbert Benson, editor of the Harvard Medical School Special Health Report Stress Management: Approaches for preventing and reducing stress. The relaxation response is the opposite of the stress response. It’s a state of profound rest that can be elicited in many ways. With regular practice, you create a well of calm to dip into as the need arises. Thank you for stopping by today.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Gottfried says:

    Thank you for your tips Garima. It was a pleasure.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      I am glad you liked them. The first step towards managing your stress levels better is to be cognizant of the various stimuli that that stress you. These could be situations, environments, people or expectation. This initial part of managing stress is of extreme importance since there are different things that stress different people. Some people can work well under pressure and a structured and less challenging environment may cause them frustration. And then there are others who prefer to work in a company that has a process orientation. There could also be certain people who criticize you whenever you meet them and so an impending meeting could also be the cause of stress.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. Hi Garima,

    Great post. I would bold the ‘meditate’ dot point. Cheers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Cheers to you too 🙂

      Like

  23. Kim Petitt says:

    It is so important to manage stress.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      It is indeed. Review your lifestyle
      Could you be taking on too much?
      Are there things you are doing which could be handed over to someone else? Can you do things in a more leisurely way? To act on the answer to these questions, you may need to prioritise things you are trying to achieve and re-organise your life This will help to release pressure that can come from trying to do everything at once.

      Like

      1. Kim Petitt says:

        Thank you so much for the tips!

        Liked by 1 person

  24. Anshika Shukla says:

    That was such a nice post . I indeed try reading a book or listening to music and also exercise when it all gets tooo overwhelming.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      That is great Anshika. Another great way of de stressing us exercising. Stressful situations increase the level of stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol in your body. These are the “fight or flight” hormones that evolution has hard-wired into our brains and which are designed to protect us from immediate bodily harm when we are under threat. However, stress in the modern age is rarely remedied by a fight or flight response, and so physical exercise can be used as a surrogate to metabolize the excessive stress hormones and restore your body and mind to a calmer, more relaxed state. When you feel stressed and tense, go for a brisk walk in fresh air. Try to incorporate some physical activity into your daily routine on a regular basis, either before or after work, or at lunchtime. Regular physical activity will also improve the quality of your sleep.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Anshika Shukla says:

        I just took walks casually when too stressed , never knew science was involved in these small actions

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Garima says:

        Science of simple things hahaha

        Like

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