Ways to Manage Your Stress
We live in a high stakes and high stress society. Unfortunately, stress is one of the leading causes of both mental and physical illness. Here’s how stress can impact your mental health – and some ways you can manage it.
Everyone gets stressed sometimes. It’s a normal response to the demands of life. And not all stress is toxic. Some stress can actually be good. This is called eustress. Eustress can help you meet deadlines or motivate you to arrive on time for important events. Eustress is temporary. Chronic stress, however, is long-term and can be toxic. When a person’s stress load becomes overwhelming, they become at risk for mental and physical health issues.
High levels of stress can activate our body’s “fight or flight” response. Although this is a useful response that activates to protect us, a chronically activated “fight or flight” response can lead to nervous system dysregulation. It can cause many problems, like depression, sleep difficulties, substance use, and physical health problems such as heart disease, digestive issues, and more.
ways to manage your stress
Things That Cause Stress
Stress is a normal response to the demands placed on us by life. Sometimes people don’t have enough tools or coping skills to deal with the demands, resulting in stress levels that can be toxic. These are some of the most common sources of stress:
- Work issues
- Physical environment
- Situational stressors, such as illness or finances
- Life transitions, such as a new job, a baby, or moving
It’s not necessarily the event itself that causes the stress, but how your body and nervous system respond. That’s why some people can go through serious situations and be seemingly unbothered, while others can become frazzled by even the smallest inconveniences.
Managing Stress In a Healthy Way
Taking action to manage your stress is an important part of being able to lower or reduce your stress. A regular self-care routine can be helpful. Here are some ways to manage stress you can try:
- Limit caffeine consumption
- Get regular physical activity
- Spend time with family and friends
- Schedule leisure time for doing things you enjoy such as reading or other hobbies
- Take out time for self care and pampering
- Learn stress management skills such as meditation or deep breathing
- Learn how to delegate tasks so you aren’t so overwhelmed
- Keep a good sense of humor
- Maintain good sleep hygiene
- Attend support groups or a stress management program
- Use tools such as prayer, dhikr, and reading Quran to help you manage stress
Learning good coping skills can help you prevent stress from becoming chronic. This can help you limit its toxicity on your health. You should seek professional help if your stress is impacting your ability to function in your day to day life.
What are some of your favorite stress management strategies? Tell us about it in the comments. Be sure to follow us on Instagram at @tuesdayinlove.