1. Time Out
When you’re experiencing stress or anxiety, sometimes you need to take a step back. You can try doing yoga, listening to music or getting a massage. Meditating and relaxation techniques can also help ease your mind. When you step away from the problem, it's easier to clear your head.
2. Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine
While they may seem like an easy, instant fix, they can actually aggravate your anxiety or stress levels, and possibly trigger panic attacks. This does not mean that you need to cut the two out altogether. Rather, limit your daily intake to reduce unwanted stress and aggravation.
3. Get More Sleep
A lack of sleep will have a negative affect even when you are in the best of health, but it is even worse when you're stressed and anxious. In fact, you need more rest and sleep when you’re stressed so make sure not to cut back on shuteye.
4. Deep Breaths
Avoid panicking by focusing on your breath. Inhale and exhale slowly. This is an instant relief to an overwhelming feeling.
5. Eat Well-Balanced Meals
When you’re stressed and anxious you might want to turn to processed snack foods for an instant boost. Alternatively, you may be too anxious to eat and might opt to skip meals. But, for health reasons, it’s important not to do this. Eat whole meals with healthy balanced food choices and keep energy-boosting snacks at hand too.
6. Dedicate Time to Exercise
Keeping your body active makes you feel good and helps maintain your overall health, which, in turn, can help you fight stress. Fitting exercise into your daily life does not have to take up large chunks of your time. You can break it down into 3 to 5 sessions of 30 minutes per week. You can try things like walking, dancing, biking or even jogging.
7. Do Your Best
A lot of the time we’re too focused on perfect goals that are hard to achieve, increasing our stress levels. Instead, reset the goal posts, try your best, and be proud of your redefined success.
8. Count to 10
Breathing deeply, counting to 10, or even 20 can be an instant relief. It sounds childish but counting forces you to focus on your breath, and the numbers can briefly distract your rushed or anxious mind.
Accept that you are not God and cannot control everything. It’s important to put your stress into perspective. Consider some other times where you felt stressed and weigh up how relative it is. Have you or others you know had it worse before?
10. Positive Attitude Required
When facing adversity, stress, or anxiety it’s vital to maintain a positive attitude. Not everyone is a natural optimist, but choosing to focus on the positives can help drive away, or at least replace, negative thoughts, enabling you to get on with the task at hand.
11. Talk it Out
It’s hard to bear stress alone. Talking to somebody, will help offload the stressful emotions. Friends and family can often give you perspective. Seek support on online forums or join a stress support group. For some, seeking a professional who is trained to properly listen is a better option.
12. Get Involved
Getting actively involved with your community allows you to have a break from everyday stress and lend your skills to a worthy cause. It can also help you create a support network of friends.
13. Pinpoint Triggers
Becoming aware of anxiety triggers can really help you figure out the best way to cope and decide if it can be avoided. It might be work, family, a place or person. Write down the times you feel stressed and see if you can identify a pattern.
14. Laughter is the Best Medicine
Another way to keep your anxiety at bay is with a healthy dose of laughter. Welcome humor into your life in whichever way you can.