Everyone has some form of stress in their life: work, school, etc., and that doesn’t always mean that it’s not a good stress. Good stresses lead to a productive day or some way to get you moving, motivated. Bad stress, also known as distress, prevents you from participating in your everyday life and can have detrimental effects on your health. I’ve had a helluva year, chock full of good stress and bad stress. While I wouldn’t say I’ve found the key to life, I’ve definitely found some methods from keeping bad stress from building up.
- I know, I’ve spoken about it before and while not everyone can find their zen, meditation is a really great way to let go of some stress. You don’t have to play mystical music in the background, or sit on top of mountain to meditate. You can be sitting on the floor of your apartment in silence. When was the last time you did that? Nowadays, it’s all about the go-go-go, never stopping to breathe, or think. Taking sometime to yourself just to think in pure silence and hear yourself can really clear your mind.
- You’re going to hate me. I know I’ve written a whole article praising yoga, but here I am, about to do it again.
- As cliche as it sounds, it’s the best advice I can give. You know when you’ve been running for a while and you honestly are out of shape, then that cramp in your side hits. It’s your body reminding you to breathe because if you’re like me, you’ll forgot that sometime you need to breathe. Taking just a few seconds to breathe deeply when you’re feeling stressed out can really bring you a senses of calming as that oxygen hits those neurons.
- I’m probably the least organized person I know (my roommate can attest to this). My room is always cluttered (on a good day) and on a bad day, my clothes cover the floor. While I’ve been getting better at staying on top of it, sometimes there will be a lot of bad days. And when I’m stressed out, coming home to see my room a mess makes my stress increase by about 110%. Cleaning my room and doing some organization, whether it’s in my room or my inbox is actually a really good way to relax. And then I can see my floor.
- This is one of the most simple ways to chill out. I hated running, I played field hockey in high school and the eight miles we used to run still scar me. Still, once I got to college, I started running again. Something about choosing when to inflict pain on my body was liberating. I started enjoying running more, and I’m not saying that I run every morning but whenever I need to blow off some steam, I run a few miles, and after, my mind is clear and I feel energized (and I didn’t even need to drink a pot of coffee for it to work.