How To Manage Unwanted Stress
Have you ever had those days where you just feel so completely stressed out for no reason? You cannot really explain it - but something just triggered you and you get inside your head. You feel yourself getting tensed up or even maybe a little irritable, trying to take some effort in practicing your breathing and taking inhales and exhales as a way to relax. It isn't working though and you continue to feel this annoying urge or restlessness and stress placed on your shoulders. In all honesty, it sucks. I will admit, time-and-time again there are still plenty of says where I feel this way, even on my best days, something just comes along and triggers these feelings. While I usually am really good about knowing what upsets me or gets me going, I sometimes fall short in truly analyzing how to deal with unwanted stress. The good news is - I am learning. And the other good news is that I wanted to share with you so far what I have come across. Without further ado, I present my little mini-guide on how to deal with unwanted stress, because let's face it - we all of those days:
Learn About Some Unnecessary Causes of Stress:
I am someone who, at one point of time, had the bad habit of over-analyzing everything and playing events over and over again trying to understand how I could have done it differently - well, more perfectly (even if perfect doesn't exist). Especially when it comes to stress situations, I was someone who always wanted to readdress the issue and relive it in a way to completely understand it. All that this is doing, however, is causing unnecessary stress. In thinking about the specific event, I am actually causing my body and mind more stress by trying to bring myself back into that moment. And while this is a come habit among other people, coming to terms with that fact and working on ways to fix that problem as certainly helped. These are also other causes of unnecessary or unwanted stress:
- Worst-Case Scenario Thinking - Focusing on the negative of a situation, such as whether or not a date will go right or wrong, can actually cause us to project further negative thoughts in the future. This way of thinking only worsens the situation, depleting our confidence and causing a ton of self-doubt that may cause more of an impact than if one went into the situation headstrong and determined.
- Procrastination - People procrastinate for a number of reasons, but many put off an event or situation because they are too overwhelmed or scared about approaching it. This only creates more stress or frustration when the time actually comes. It is suggested that one takes smaller pieces of the whole event or situation at a time, allowing ease to navigate the situation.
- Being Late - Some people may often get afraid of going somewhere or committing yes to something that is out of their control, only creating additional stress or triggers because of it. It is important to not beat yourself up when you are late, but rather focusing on the positives of the situations, such as the event, the time you get to spend with people, or even just for being present in the moment.
- Lurking On Social Media - There are times that social media often gets the best of us, getting more and more self-conscious by influencers that we see in designer clothing, on fancy vacations, or whatever else. It is important to realize that comparing ourselves to them is only causing unnecessary stress. It crucial to know that fake-ness behind their reality while also maintaining your own positivity for your life and your health.
Understand How Stress Effects Your Health
When it comes to health, it is important to know how it effects your body - from the physical effects to even the emotional. This is crucial as it can help you understand your triggers and how your body easily adapts to stress. In become aware of these effects, you can easily address the issues and hopefully manage your anxiety or feelings. Here is how stress effects your body:
- Brain Effects -
- Memory Problems
- Inability to Concentrate
- Poor Judgment
- Seeing the Negative
- Constant Worrying
- Anxious Thoughts
- Mood Effects -
- Easily Agitated
- Feelings of Overwhelm
- Depression or General Unhappiness
- Physical Effects -
- Aches and Pains
- Frequent Illness
- Diarrhea or Constipation
- Nausea or Dizziness
- Behavioral Effects -
- Changes In Eating Habits
- Changes In Sleeping Habits
- Isolation From Others
- Nervous Habits
- Use of Alcohol or Cigarettes to Relax
How To Manage Stress
When it comes to stress, there are many different ways to handle it. For some, it could simply be practicing some self-care, while others may take other approaches like deep-breathing or even acupuncture. Here are some ways to deal with stress that I have found work for me:
- Diaphragmatic Breathing : take a slow, long breath, letting the diaphragm expand the belly on the inhale, and then exhale completely before repeating the process.
- One Minute PMR : PMR stands for Progressive Muscle Relaxation - which involves clinching one group of muscles while your practice breathing.
- Inhale and wrinkle the forehead. Hold for 5 seconds. Exhale and release.
- Inhale, close your eyes tightly, and scrunch your cheeks. Hold for 5 seconds. Exhale and release.
- Inhale, clench your jaw, and stretch mouth to a grin. Hold for 5 seconds. Exhale and release.
- Inhale and squeeze your lips together. Hold for 5 seconds. Exhale and release.
- Inhale and puff the air into your cheeks. Hold for 5 seconds. Exhale and release.
- Repeat a few times, if necessary.
- Relaxation Response : Are time-paced exercises help to relieve stress. Here are some of our favorites -
- Swim laps in a pool.
- Practice Aromatherapy.
- Go for a walk or run in the woods or the park.
- Take a bike ride.
- Brush your pet.
- Do a series of yoga sun salutations.
- Create art.
- Play a musical instrument.
- Sing a song or dance.
- Create free-time to relax.
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