Given the current state of affairs, stress levels are at an all-time high, if they weren’t already.
It’s quite hard to understand the great misfortunes that are happening around the world. For many of us, we’re worried about the future of our jobs, scared we won’t be able to pay for rent next month, find it difficult to balance taking care of our kids and doing household chores, and of course, worried about getting sick. The list seems endless at this point.
When stress becomes too high, you may start to think about some of the easy ways to relieve stress. You may drink more alcohol to calm yourself, indulge too much in recreational drugs, or sleep-in all day on your days off. Either way, these aren’t the best solutions to handle stress.
It’s good to adopt healthy ways to handle stress when you’re an adult facing this pandemic. It may seem challenging, but you owe it to your wellbeing to try. Here are five recommendations you can get started with today.
If you’ve taken a look outside your house, you may have noticed there have been far more increases in people exercising. As one of the few outdoor activities still encouraged, exercising is a great way to relieve some stress. One of the key benefits of exercise is it increases the production of endorphins, the “feel-good“ chemicals your brain releases and act as your body’s natural painkillers.
The amount and what type of exercise you’ll want to do will vary person-to-person, but sometimes a light jog or a long walk will do the trick. If you’d prefer to stay inside, there are also workouts you can do from home.
Avoid pushing yourself too far and too fast, especially if you’ve been sedentary for a long time. Overexerting yourself can lead to minor or serious injuries and muscle fatigue. If you feel some soreness, take a rest and apply kinesiology tape to the site of the pain to relieve the ache. Exercise can help reduce stress, but too much of it will only lead to body pain, so make sure to pace yourself.
You may feel the need to keep moving forward, all the while thinking if you slow down or take a break, you’ll lose valuable time or won’t do as great a job on whatever task you’re working on.
Our brains aren’t machines, and we do need time to recharge and relax. If we keep going moving full force at something, we run the risk of burnout and even more stress, so taking a 15-minute is recommended. It lets your mind rest a bit and can also help with figuring out different angles to overcome your current task.
Talk about your stress
It’s important more than ever to have someone to talk to about the problems you’re facing. We’re at a time where many people are facing similar challenges, and being able to talk with others about what you’re going through is helpful. It could be a friend, a family member, or even a coworker. Talking with others allows new insight and perspective on the challenge we are facing and may even help with figuring out a solution.
While you should adhere to the best social distancing practices, there are many ways you can talk to someone else without being there in person, such as using a video chat program or directly calling them on the phone.
Laughter is said to be a great way to relieve stress and for a good reason. Laughter can increase your body’s production on endorphins, boost your immune system, and relax your body.
While the current situation we are in is no laughing matter, it doesn’t hurt to find something you can laugh at. It could be a funny joke, a silly social media post, or a funny movie or sitcom.
Listen to music
This is a pretty easy one to do and can be done during many routine activities like washing the dishes or cooking. Research shows that depending on the type of music you’re listening to, your mood can be elevated, your anxiety can decrease, and your concentration can increase.
Finding music isn’t too hard, either. Many apps and programs like Spotify or Pandora host music, and all you need is an internet connection. If you’re not looking to spend any money, you can use free radio services or even find your favorite music video on YouTube.
While the times we are facing are difficult, they won’t last forever. However, the effects of stress can be long-lasting, so you should prioritize finding healthy ways to relax and relieve stress.