How To Stop Stressing: 7 Tips To Find Balance And Relax
Do you feel like stress is pressing in on every side? Do you struggle to relax and find balance in your life? If so, you may be struggling with stress and anxiety. If you aren’t proactive in addressing these issues, they can have a negative impact on each area of your life. Learning how to stop stressing can be the key that you need to find balance in your life.
Signs Of Stress And Anxiety In Your Life
Stress can impact you on multiple levels—including your mental and physical health. To reduce stress, you need to first understand how to spot when it’s happening.
Signs of stress and anxiety can include:
Change in sleeping
Change in appetite
Headaches or dizziness
Clenching or grinding teeth
Aches and pains throughout your body
These are not symptoms that you want to deal with regularly in your life. And, if left unchecked, you may find that they are leading to larger health concerns such as depression, heart disease, diabetes, and more.
If you have identified these symptoms in you or a loved one, you may benefit from taking the time to explore a path forward with a licensed therapist. A telehealth professional through BetterHelp can offer guidance while being flexible and accessible from the comfort of your own home. Online therapy has been shown to be effective at treating a variety of conditions while delivering comparable results as in-person care for most conditions.
Understanding The Natural Stress Response
Some of the physical responses that we have when we feel stress coming on are part of the fight-or-flight response. This can be an essential reaction to have if you are in a life-threatening situation. And it is a response that many credit with the survival of the human race throughout history. For example, if you come face-to-face with a wild animal, your fight-or-flight reaction could be what leads to you staying alive.
However, most of us are not coming face-to-face with wild animals that are trying to kill us regularly. Instead, we’re facing daily stresses such as financial burden, overwhelming schedules, coworkers that try to take the credit for the work that we do, and notifications dinging on our phones regularly. These situations are not life-threatening. So instead of our fight-or-flight response kicking into gear and saving us, the stress can continue to build, causing us long-term physical and mental health challenges.
This is why it’s important that we learn how to reduce stress and anxiety in our life.
Stress Management Tips For Finding Balance
The following strategies can help you learn how to manage your stress and anxiety in your life.
Learn How To Identify What’s Causing The Stress
Many different things can be causing you stress in life. Some large life changes may be easy to identify as the cause of added stress. This could be things like getting a promotion at work, becoming a new parent, or going through financial trouble.
But your stress may be coming from things outside of the situations that you’re in. It could be from a lack of knowing how to handle your emotions or struggling with time management skills. While you can learn stress management techniques to use when you feel stressed, learning how to identify the trigger can help you work on addressing the root cause of it.
Some people struggle with stress because they feel like they’re not accomplishing the things that they want to in life. They struggle with feeling like they’re not good enough, which leads them to feel like they always need to be trying to accomplish more. This can lead to a lack of balance in life as you’re always striving to get something done and not taking the time that you need to focus on yourself-care.
Learning how to recognize the success that you have daily can go a long way in building your confidence, which can help you avoid falling into the pattern of taking on too much. You’re not likely to look for approval from others when you have healthy self-esteem, so you can take a realistic look at what you want to accomplish and what you want to do. This can help you to relax and live a more balanced life.
While goal setting, exercise, deep breathing, prioritization, and meditation are key techniques to handle stress, if you’re still struggling with finding balance in your life and you find that stress and anxiety are overwhelming you, you may want to talk with a therapist. Don't be afraid of feeling like a burden when you ask for help.
While some people have the belief that therapy is only for people that have diagnosable mental health disorders, that’s simply not true. Licensed therapists like those at BetterHelp can help individuals with many different life challenges, including anxiety and stress. Your therapist can help you learn how to identify the stress triggers that are in your life. And they can work with you to help you learn critical coping strategies to overcome stress and find the balance that you’re looking for.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What Are 5 Ways To Relieve Stress?
Here are five ways to relieve stress:
Spending time with others—social support is shown to increase resilience to stress
Outdoor activities—even just 20-30 minutes of time outdoors can lower cortisol levels
There are a number of different health benefits associated with yoga, including stress relief and the potential for lower blood pressure
Progressive muscle relaxation—various studies have shown that progressive muscle relaxation lowers stress hormones and reduces mental stress
Breathing exercises—deep breathing and breathing exercises can help decrease anxiety, lower cortisol levels, and promote psychological relaxation.
Breathing exercises are a convenient tool to turn to because you can use them anywhere, and there's a range of different breathing exercises to try
If you're feeling stressed, there are a number of other techniques you can utilize, too. Physical activity, "me time," a break from stressful situations, positive affirmations, planning for high-stress days or events so that you know what to expect or do to cope, creative activities, and hobbies all may be beneficial.
Some people find that watching TV that is familiar to them, (e.g., a favorite television show) is restorative and offers a sense of control. There are things you can do in your everyday life, too, to support your overall well-being and self-care. Practicing sleep hygiene and working to get enough sleep the best you can, for example, is crucial for health and wellness. Make sure to speak with someone who can provide individualized medical advice if your stress is ongoing or if you experienced symptoms of stress that are a cause for concern.
How Do I Know If I'm Too Stressed?
There are a number of potential signs of stress to look out for. If you're feeling stressed, you might feel overwhelmed and be more prone to negative thoughts, trouble sleeping, feelings of anxiety, feelings of depression or changes in mood, and other symptoms. The chances are that if you feel as though your stress levels are too high, you're correct. Perhaps, there's a stressful situation that you don't know what to do about, can't do anything about, or that you can't stop thinking about. If you feel as though this might be true for you, there are things you can do. Talk with a medical or mental health professional, such as a doctor or therapist, if you need help with stress and stress management. Therapy can help people reduce and manage stress, improve mood and quality of life, lower levels of depression and anxiety, if applicable, find coping skills, and work through or deal with stress and stressful situations.
How Can I Relax My Mind?
Breathing exercises, yoga, mindfulness meditation, and time in an outdoor or natural setting may all be helpful ways to relax the mind. It can also be advantageous to spend time with friends. In addition to yoga, other forms of physical activity, such as a walk, can be helpful. If—on a regular basis—you find it hard to relax, experience feelings of overwhelm or a loss of control, or feel like you can't get out of your head, it may be beneficial to talk with a therapist. They can help you find what works when it comes to managing stress levels, give you a safe space to discuss the topics or events that might be on your mind, and find tools that help you, as a unique individual, cope.
What Are 5 Emotional Signs Of Stress?
Five emotional signs of stress can include irritability, feeling overwhelmed or a loss of control, feelings of depression, feelings of anxiety, and isolation or loneliness. When we experience stress, our nervous system responds with what's often called the fight-or-flight response. Prolonged stress can lead to serious consequences (including—but not limited to—high blood pressure, an increased risk of heart disease, and an increased risk of anxiety and depression symptoms), therefore managing stress levels is vital. The good news is that taking control of stress is possible.
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