5 Stress Busting Tips to Get You Through the Week

August 21, 2017

10:50 am

Ask anyone on the street if they are stressed about something, the answer will most likely be yes.

According to a survey by the American Psychology Association (APA), millennials are stressing more than ever, and they listed money and job as the top two sources of stress.

As stress levels begin to rise, one could begin to experience negative physical or emotional symptoms. Headaches, irritability, increased anxiety, lack of motivation, inability to sleep or change in sex drive are common signs of stress beginning to take a toll on one’s health.

“The longer the stress lasts, the worse it is for both your mind and body. You might feel fatigued, unable to concentrate or irritable for no good reason, for example. But chronic stress causes wear and tear on your body, too,” according to the APA.

While you may not be able to avoid all the stress you deal with on a daily basis, doing something to relieve your current level of stress is a step in the right direction. Here are some stress busting tips to get you through the week.

Just Breathe

People underestimate the power of the breath and pausing for a moment to calm the mind.

Researchers have found that deep breathing exercises can reduce one’s anxiety and blood pressure, help relax one’s muscles and mind, and manage symptoms of stress.

Meditation apps such as Calm and Breathe (paid apps) will lead you through breathing exercises to help you give your stressful mind a break.

Walk Outside

Getting up out of your chair and grabbing some sunshine and fresh air can not only give your body a break from the hustle but help reset your mind.

According to Livestrong, getting outside can help “clear your lungs and enables you to take deeper, longer breaths of air — which increases the amount of oxygen that’s transported to your body’s cells. Increased oxygen in your body translates to greater energy and clarity of mind.”

Start today and set up an appointment for yourself to go outside. Better yet, grab some coworkers and take a quick walk around the block on a break.

Get Rid of the Drama

Office gossip, unhappy people hanging at the lunch table, and clicks are all red flags that drama could creep into your workday.

While it might be hard to avoid these conversations, it’s better for your professional life to not get wrapped up in the latest noise that could distract your work, or worse, end up becoming the topic of conversation.

In the Harvard Business Review, author Victor Lipman suggests to try three things to avoid office gossip: vote with your feet and walk away, change the focus back to work instead of the topic at hand or add a positive perspective to the conversation.

You can also begin to establish your personal space at work, as well as setting boundaries about conversation topics and not allow people to just interrupt you at your desk with their daily grumble. Don’t worry, those people will find someone else to talk with about their drama.

Get Offline

If you find yourself getting emotionally charged after reading a social media post, news story or the latest Trump tweet, and it’s starting to affect your productivity or workflow, it might be time to limit your intake of the Internet and just focus on work.

According to psychologists, consistent exposure to negative news could influence one’s mood and levels of pessimism.

British psychologist Dr. Graham Davey told the Huffington Post, “Negative news can significantly change an individual’s mood — especially if there is a tendency in the news broadcasts to emphasize suffering and also the emotional components of the story.”

Go Be a kid

While you might think heading for the swing set in the nearby park would childish, psychotherapist Hilda Burke said this kind of adult play might be exactly the medicine we need to relieve stress and help boost our creativity.

“Our inner child is spontaneous and fun-loving and, it means that none of us really want to grow up. Our childish persona wants to take risks and have adventures. It’s important that we tap into that side of ourselves, otherwise we’d never be creative,” Burke said in an article by Metro UK.

Seed bar brand 9Nine in London recently opened up a pop up adult playground filled with see saws, swings, and all, to help adults let out their inner child and improve their wellbeing.

Instead of watching the next episode on Netflix, it might be time to bust out that LEGO set with the kids or take in a round of goofy golf to release some stress.

Read more on tips to maintaining a healthy mind at TechCo

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Tishin is a technology journalist and correspondent. She has written for TechCrunch, Demand Studios and Fitness, and has regular network segments on local Phoenix affiliate stations. She holds a Master's degree in Clinical and Sport psychology, and has covered many areas of technology ranging from 3D printing and game development to neurotech and funding for over 15 years.

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