9 WAYS TO BE LESS STRESSED
This is our in-depth guide to being less stressed. Whilst we understand a certain amount of stress is normal and necessary for everyday living, it’s not ‘natural’ to live in a state of permanent anxiety. If you live from day to day managing mood swings, worrying about everything from the mortgage to work to the kids and the state of the world, then try some of our tips for instant zen.
1) LIVE IN THE NOW
Time is a concept that man invented to manage the day. It’s not a real ‘thing’ that we can harness or change. In simple terms, we only ever have ‘now’. As you read this, ‘time’ has moved on, and the moment changed, and the few seconds that have elapsed since you started this, have gone forever. Having a great attitude to living in the now, is the first step to being less stressed in life.
By learning to live in the now, we understand that we cannot change the past – it’s gone. And we can’t live in the ‘future’ because it hasn’t happened. When we ground ourselves absolutely in the moment, it helps us to take responsibility for our actions. It allows us to think clearer about what we are doing at that moment. Try reading The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle for a greater understanding of how you can adjust from a place of anxiety or depression, through to contentment.
2) STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS
We all do it, but it’s hardly ever healthy. It may be that you covet your neighbour’s car. Or you wish you were more popular like John in the office. Or perhaps life would be better if you were a bit better looking. Or why is it that Susie is always so happy – what’s she got that you haven’t? A bit of healthy comparison is fine, but if it’s eating away at you – maybe it’s time to look deeper at the root of your unhappiness. So stop judging yourself by how your measure others, and be less stressed in life.
3) GET THINGS OUT OF YOUR MIND AND ONTO PAPER
It’s time to start loving lists. How many times a day do you circle around the same thoughts? For example. “I must get some dog food. And whilst I’m at the shops I’ll pop into the chemist and get that prescription. Oh – I need to ring Dave about our meeting on Monday too. And I must sort out the internet subscription as well. Oh yes – I need to put Daisy’s swim club on the calendar in the kitchen. And ring mum and see how dad is….”
Sounds familiar? And you won’t just think about these things once – they’ll pop randomly in and out of your thoughts until they’re done. Why not try running a ‘dual list system?’
Have a master list with everything you need to do – just write it all on there as you think about it. And then have a ‘day list’ when you write down what to do that day. Cross it off the master list, and put it on the day list. The master list will always be full, as there are always things to do, but it will change as you deal with the chores. And each day, you can start afresh knowing you’ve got the time-sensitive issues covered. This will also help you to sleep, sleep is so important for health. Read our guide to sleep here.
4) LEARN TO SAY NO
It’s a really powerful word. If you constantly say yes – you’ll train people to come back for more. Anything from offering lifts in the car, to attending parties you don’t want to go to…. It’s all about learning to refuse and not feeling bad about it.
And you don’t have to go into detail either. A flat ‘no’ will probably offend, but here are a few ways to turn down queries and invites, without feeling bad. Just say what you have to say, and don’t go into more detail – people don’t need to know any more!
“Oh thank you for asking. But I’m really busy right now.”
“Thank you, but I’m not much of a party-goer/theatre lover, so I’ll say no. Cheers anyway.”
“Cheers for that, but I’m saving for my next holiday, so not coming out right now.”
Etc…. saying no is a great way to be less stressed!
5) IT’S A BASIC – EAT WELL!
If you bought a beautiful new car, you’d look after it wouldn’t you? And we’re assuming that means putting the right fuel into the engine? Now transfer this analogy to your body. Is it because our bodies are free, that we don’t treat them with the respect they deserve? Have a serious look at what you are ‘feeding’ yourself. Just because you’re eating it, doesn’t mean it’s edible…… And how can we expect to run to our full potential when we’re putting sub-standard products into ourselves?
Pro Gains meal delivery service is all about correcting your food imbalances, nourishing you with a balanced meal of high-quality ingredients designed to keep you in great condition. Just choose your protein and the accompanying carbs and vegetables – and they’ll be delivered to your door fresh, twice a week. Our meal prep helps EVERYONE be less stressed, when it comes to cooking and deciding what is healthy.
6) BEAT DEPRESSION WITH ACTION
Feeling low? Then do something for someone else. When depression takes over, it can render us useless. We can’t concentrate on anything but our own problems. However, by making ourselves useful to others, it can re-balance how we see our place in society. We become useful and needed. This can, in turn lift the spirits and self-esteem. Not to mention the fact we are providing practical help to people. There are thousands of voluntary organisations looking for people to lend a hand. Check out volunteernow.co.uk
7) TAKE A BREAK
The world will not cease to turn if you take a holiday from work. Even a day away from your routine will work wonders. Do something spontaneous and unexpected. Phone an old friend you haven’t seen for ages – go for a day out and a good chat. Take a spa break. Get the cycle out of the garage and explore a local beauty spot. Have a spa day or an indulgent afternoon tea. Just change your routine and do it!
8) PUT YOUR FINANCES IN ORDER
You have choices about how you spend and whether you save. You have choices about where you shop and what you spend your money on.
If your finances are causing you stress, then spend a day or two de-cluttering. Look around for better deals on insurance and energy. Change your credit cards if they’re charging you too much (or better still – make a resolution to clear them and not buy things unless you can afford them).
Pay off debts, call in money owed and don’t lend unless you can afford to lose it. Buy in bulk for savings, or look at charity shops (there’s a HUGE choice of clothing and homewares available). Check bank statements, set up direct debits where needed, and cancel things you don’t need. It’s all about being in control.
9) DE-CLUTTER YOUR SURROUNDINGS
There’s nothing like a camping holiday to make you realise how little you actually need in life! Aside from a roof over our heads, somewhere comfortable to sleep and food to eat, we don’t ‘need’ much else. All the paraphernalia we surround ourselves with has been ‘sold’ to us by clever advertising. Who needs hundreds of DVDs stacked up the wall? Or children’s toys taking over an entire room. What is the purpose of having 50 pairs of shoes, or 10 white t-shirts?
When we really start to look, the amount of things we gather in our lives is nothing short of ridiculous. When people suffer a life-changing event that robs them of their home and possessions (like a fire), they often talk (once the shock has worn off) of about feeling cleansed. Whilst we’re not suggesting you torch your home, de-cluttering is a fantastic way to clear your surroundings and your mind. Give stuff away to charity that you don’t need, or hold a car boot sale and sell it off. That way, you’ll be cleansing your home and boosting your finances.
Whatever your choices, being less stressed in your life is vital to improve its quality. After all – nobody ever lay on their deathbed and wished they’d spent more days worrying at the office!