At one point in time I accidentally thought that my phone was my coffee and put it in the microwave. You must be wondering if my phone survived. Sadly, my phone did not survive, but the good news is that I quickly realized I was microwaving my phone. You got that right – I was definitely stressed at that point in time. Life can be very stressful and everyone experiences stress to a certain level. More importantly, people experience stress differently. Regardless of the level of stress you are experiencing, I am here to tell you that you can stop stressing immediately! In this blog post I will give you ideas and techniques for reducing your stress!
Step 1: Journal
Honestly, there are times when I am stressed where I even forget what I am stressed about to begin with. For me, journaling has been a crucial part of routine and a major step in helping reduce my stress levels. For those of you who have never journaled before – you can choose to journal on your phone or in a notebook. I often hear people tell me that they don’t know what to journal about and that they wouldn’t even be able to fill a page in their notebook. Within the next few weeks they are journaling endlessly.
So, how can you start journaling? Firstly, decide if you would like to journal on your phone in the “notes” section or if you would like to write in a notebook. Next, figure out where in your daily schedule you can add time to journal. After this, decide the amount of time you would like to journal. Many people do not want to journal because they think that they need to dedicate hours upon hours to journaling. This is a misconception, because if you really want to work on this habit you can even start journaling 5 minutes a day! Lastly, you must be wondering – what do I even journal about? I will not provide you with the questions that you should be answering while journaling as this is completely your decision! I usually do not journal to a specific question. Rather, I just start writing everything that is on mind. I find that when I journal without having specific questions to answer, I am better able to understand how I am feeling as I am able to get everything on paper!
Step 2: Gratitude
Gratitude is the most important part of my morning routine. Usually, I am more stressed when I have fully strayed away from incorporating gratitude into my routine. What is gratitude? Gratitude is simple and genuine thankfulness for everything in your life, and more importantly for life itself in the present moment! Gratitude helps you realize everything that is great in your life. Sometimes, we are so caught up in our busy routines that we only see everything through a pessimistic lens. However, there is always so much optimism around us at all times…that is only if we wish to see it that way!
Step 3: Yoga/Exercise
For me, yoga and exercise are both equally as important. I start my day with yoga, and then I go to the gym! Yoga and exercise helps me be even more present. The more aligned you are with the present moment the less likely you are to stress over what you are going to wear to the weekend family event. Yoga and exercise help the mind focus on the movement happening in the present moment. For example, when I am exercising my bicep muscle I am more likely to focus on the my form and the exercise itself. At the same time, you reap the benefits of yoga and exercise in the long-term.
Step 4: Talk to Friends and Family
Talking to your friends and family at times of stress is perhaps one of the most helpful ways to overcome stress. You also don’t have to talk to them about your stress, instead you can use this time to just catch up with each other and have a regular conversation. Often times, when you talk to someone it helps divert your mind from the stress and you even forget what you were stressed about to begin with! Take out 5 to 10 minutes to talk to a friend of family member daily or weekly – you will see that this will help in reducing your stress levels!
Everyone experiences stress in their life! It is important to recognize when you are stressed and to understand the reason for the stress. Most times our habit of overthinking leads to unnecessary stress. The good news is that there are different ways in which you can reduce your stress. Some of the ways are: Journaling, Yoga and Exercise, and talking to Family and Friends. The commonality between these three stress reducing options is that they allow you to be more present! You will start seeing real change when you take back the power from the stress itself.