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Monday, 17 September 2018

How To Lower Stress And Pressure Levels - Stress Busting Tips

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I definitely used to be the queen of stressing out, letting the pressure get to me and just getting myself into a tizz. I feel like it's quite a common thing to do, to overthink everything, make stress where stress shouldn't exist and get ourselves worked up, and worried over well, things that don't actually need to be stressed over. Equally though, I get myself stressed about things that are worth stressing over but that's another story. I guess what I'm trying to say is (and this is easier said than done) we only live once and we shouldn't sweat the small stuff. As humans though, it's definitely in our nature to sweat the small stuff and luckily, I've come up with some ways to lower stress levels. Stress can have really serious impacts on your health and it isn't good to be stressed and worried, I promised myself I'd really try and do the things I can within my control to lower my stress/pressure at the start of this year and thought I'd share my best ways for lowering stress and pressure on today's post with some easy stress busting tips. 
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Mind over matter: I think first things first, try and be logical about your stress. It's totally okay to feel stressed and you wouldn't be human if you didn't feel stressed but often, I find myself getting stressed about things out of my control or things not worth stressing over. Have a little pep talk with yourself and look at the problem you are facing/the thing causing you stress: can you do anything to fix it? Will it matter in a months time? Is it really that big of a deal/the end of the world? I know it might feel like the end of the world at that moment, but sometimes you have to step away from a problem to see how big or small it really is. Read: how to turn negatives into positives. 

Workout: Love or hate it, working out really does have the power to combat stress and pressure. I have walked into the gym feeling incredibly stressed, with the weight of my world on my shoulders and left feeling like a new woman. Getting there is the hardest bit but getting that stress and adrenaline out on a punch bag or a treadmill helps. I started doing Blaze classes this year at David Lloyd and cannot recommend them enough if you're a stressed person, punching the punch bag gives me serious happy endorphins and relieves me of any stress. It's a great thing to do after a stressful day or, even in my lunch break if I'm feeling a bit 'meh'. If you don't have a gym to hand, go on a walk, fresh air is so good for cleansing the mind! There is so much evidence that shows exercise releases endorphins so take those endorphins. Rumour has it, eating chocolate also releases endorphins so you could also try that too haha... Read: 8 easy ways to motivate yourself to workout. 

Sleep: I find I'm way more stressed/on edge if I haven't had enough sleep. Work on going to bed earlier or letting yourself get up later if you've had a late night. My mood is lower and I get stressed way easier when I'm tired. Read: 4 tips for a better nights sleep. 
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Pre-book: This is a weird one but something that helps put me in control of something that has the ability to stress me out. I commute a lot and I get really stressed out if I have a 3 hour journey on a train with no reserved seat, the thought of having to dash down the station with my suitcase and fight for a seat makes me anxious and fills me with dread. Now? I pre-book my seat (at least 48 hours in advance usually) and it means I can do my commute with no worries, I stroll into the train station and get on with my commute. I guess this is just me looking at something that causes me unnecessary, silly stress and figuring out an easy way I can handle it. I know not having a seat for a few hours is not the end of the world but it saves me a lot of unnecessary sweat and anxiousness haha. Read: 13 ways I've been living a happier life. 

Power hour: If you read my top tips for freelancers blog post, you may recall me talking about the power hour! A power hour instantly makes me more productive. I basically sit with a huge to-do list, which makes me stressed but then rather than smashing it out, I scroll on my phone, or look at dog memes or figure out what CHEESE I AM... anything apart from doing my work. I find that firstly, locking my phone in a different room works wonders and I actually get work done that way. Secondly, giving myself a POWER HOUR to do certain tasks, eg, only one hour of emails and then I'll get on with creating content or only one hour of tidying my room means I work way more efficiently at said task. Try it, it's a race against the time meaning you get more done, quicker and thus, banish some stress because your to-do list is shorter!!! Read: how to be really productive. 

To do list: Whilst to do lists can be fantastic and I am a little in love with them, they can also cause unnecessary stress. I find that prioritising my to do list is key, so every morning I will go over my to-do list and ensure it's succinct and in the order of the stuff I need to do. I make it into a 'priority list' and I find this keeps my mind on the important tasks. Read: to do list tips. 

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Write stuff down before bed, get it off your mind: I was listening to a podcast and it talked about how important getting stuff off your mind before bed is. They suggested 'word vomiting' your thoughts, ideas, things you need to do, into a notebook, your phone or whatever you use before you go to sleep. This means your mind isn't going to be in overdrive whilst you are trying to sleep and you're not stressing before bed or during those important slumber hours. I always go over my to-do list right before bed and 'reset' it for the next day. I feel accomplished and organised for the day ahead then. 

A problem shared: You know what they say, a problem shared is a problem halved. If you're feeling stressed, try and talk it out with someone either on your team, a friend, a family member or even someone in a similar situation to you. They may be able to help you or offer some insight. 

Out of office: I find putting my out of office on if I'm out for a day of meetings really helps to minimise the pressure. I put so much pressure on myself to respond immediately to things and by having that out of office on, I know the pressure has been lifted. It's a little thing but it really helps me, knowing people aren't mad at me haha! 

So there we have it, some of my top tips to help you lower stress and pressure levels, whether the pressure is at work, school or in general life, I hope some of these tips may help to de-stress you going forward! Remember, there are SO many things in life that cause stress/pressure and we simply cannot control them, so try and eliminate any unnecessary stress by handling the things you can control! 

Do you have any tips for handling stress and pressure levels?

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Lots of love, Em x

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