I am by no means an expert at stress. My doctorate in Clinical Psychology however has given me a better understanding of stress. My program also required 52 hours of personal therapy- which really helped me learn better coping mechanisms for stress. This post- ways to be less stressed- will be the beginning of many more posts about life and how to approach the challenges that may come from it.
All about Stress
If there is one thing I learned about stress, it is that it is really bad for you. The harmful chemicals your body releases when it is stressed changes the way your body functions affecting your immune system. Chronic stress creates changes that can have permanent effects. You may not be stressed at the moment, but if you experience chronic stress, your body is in constant reaction to this stress. Your body is always in a fight or flight mode and the physiological changes that occur can really damage your physical and mental health.
Ways to be less Stressed
- Mindfulness is a practice where you learn to focus your attention to your choice of focus, for a prolonged period of time. Meditation is a form of mindfulness. Mindfulness will help you learn to refocus your attention away from thoughts causing needless stress. I will talk more in depth about mindfulness in a different post because it is such a fascinating topic. Marc.UCLA has great resources such as guided meditations that will help you practice mindfulness.
Put things in Perspective
- This can be difficult to do but sometimes, putting things in perspective is one of the ways to be less stressed. Ask yourself the question, does stressing about it change the situation? Maybe you can come up with an approach to the problem instead of stressing. Or maybe you can put it aside until the actual situation occurs.
Talk to someone
- Whether it is a friend, a coworker, or mental health professional, talking to someone can help you with stress. I am a proponent of going to a therapist, whether once a week or once every two months. Talking to someone is a wonderful way to feel less stressed. Check with your insurance- and if therapy is covered or mostly covered, I highly recommend taking advantage of this.
- Self Care is one of the best ways to feel less stressed. It can mean doing something you enjoy like exercising, reading a book, getting a massage, or having dinner with a friend. Self care means you are taking care of your self, physically and emotionally.
There are many other ways to feel stressed, and they can all be effective. I can’t cover them all in one post, but the idea is to do something that is healthy and helpful in order to have a better way of life.
What do you do to help ease stress in your life?
♥ Lesley Kim
*** This post is my opinion and not meant to replace professional advice. Always seek proper and adequate professional help if you think you or someone you know need help.