We all experience some stress daily – the fight or flight response, the adrenaline rush that may come when a situation needs to be handled. For instance, that feeling of tension and urgency when a deadline comes too close for comfort. When the to-do list seems endlessly long, all the urgent tasks must be handled. When the people of your term project group run into issues, you must resolve them. This pressure may motivate you to get the ball rolling and cross off all the items on your to-do list. In fact, this appears to be the driving force behind the hustle culture mindset, which preaches using stress as fuel to push yourself to new heights and achieve success. However, more often than not, we take too much stress for a prolonged period, resulting in behavior that is anything but productive.
Lately, you have been procrastinating, constantly feeling drained or exhausted, or not motivated to get things done. In that case, chances are you are suffering from burnout – a consequence of stress. But don’t fret! We have just the right fix for you. Below, we have rounded up a list of things you can do to refresh yourself after a stressful day.
Let’s consider an example of an imaginary person called Sarah. Sarah is a student enrolled in an online FNP program. Alongside her degree, she is also looking after her children and her household and doing a part-time job to finance her education. Sarah has a lot going on all at once. Someone like Sarah, who is trying to perform all these responsibilities properly, is likely to experience high-stress levels for long periods. One of the proven ways to de-stress is meditation. It is done by focusing your mental attention and awareness solely on one object or thought and blocking everything else out. This allows you to clear your mind and focus on the present.
Thegoodbody.com mentions that practicing meditation has been shown to improve memory, help reduce stress and help reduce depression relapse by 12%. Start by meditating for 5 minutes, then build up on that. There are various techniques available online, as well as applications to help you with your meditation journey. Find one that works for you, and watch how it does wonder to refresh you at the end of the day.
Write down what’s on your mind
Often stress occurs because of the way we react to a situation. A good way to handle this would be to jot down your thoughts in a journal. Not only does this allow you to get things off your shoulders, but it also allows you to reflect on your thought process and perception, giving you greater self-awareness. You could even make a gratitude journal to refocus your perspective on all the good that has happened to you. This is especially beneficial if you are prone to negative thoughts. The blog Hostee suggests that journaling can help boost your immune function and help you cope with depression better. Set aside a few minutes in a day. Have a little journal where you can spill your thoughts at a designated time every day. You could help yourself with journal prompts. Once you are done writing, you’ll notice you feel much lighter and fresh.
Get outside more
Removing yourself from the environment that is causing you stress can be very refreshing. You might feel even more revitalized if you take a walk outside in the fresh air, go for a hike in nature and soak in some vitamin D. You could also go out and socialize with your friends and family.
Go to dinner with your loved ones, catch up with what’s happening in their lives, or perhaps go out with your friends after work to enjoy. This quality time, whether with yourself and nature or with the people closest to you, will help take your mind off things that stress you out and allow you some much-needed relaxation and joy.
In today’s world, it is essential to take care of yourself, so you can perform optimally. Prioritizing yourself after a hectic day is especially important as it is one of the best ways to unwind and relax. Various popular ways to practice self-care include aromatherapy through essential oils and scented candles. Taking bubble baths and spending time doing your hobbies, such as reading your favorite book, etc., also help. Eating a healthy diet is quite an integral part of self-care. Make sure you eat a well-rounded, nourishing diet with essential proteins and leafy greens. This way, you keep your body healthy and happy and give it the fuel and strength to combat prolonged stress exposure.
It is equally important for you to move your body too. According to Mayo Clinic reports, exercise directly fights off stress. Exercise is essential to keeping your mind and body in good shape, as the movement releases feel-good chemicals in your body. This makes you feel much fresher and more uplifted after a workout session. It also gives you an outlet to expel the pent-up stress and negative energy, hence making you feel much lighter and happier afterward.
If needed, do not hesitate to go see a therapist. This is perhaps the most important form of self-care – acknowledging that you need help and seeking professional help. Speaking to a therapist will not only help prevent stress from adversely impacting your well-being, but they could also offer you some valuable tricks on managing stress better. So, you will be able to relax and de-stress more.
Stress is a tool that allows us to get things done. For some, it serves as a motivator, a fuel that drives them to success. However, more often than not, we celebrate stress way too much, overlooking its damages as a result.
Uncontrolled, prolonged stress can adversely affect your well-being, leading to anxiety, depression, and severe physiological ailments such as high blood pressure. Therefore, you must prioritize de-stressing after a hectic day and take whatever measures you deem suitable to come out of the fight or flight mode. This way, you will not only allow yourself to slow down and enjoy, but you will also give your body the time to restore and repair itself so it can handle the pressures of life better. As a result, allowing you to lead a long, happy and healthy life.