Studies have shown that we are the most stressed generation. Ever. Great!
Despite being Generation Stress we are also the most innovative generation, the most connected generation, the most informed generation and the most aware of our social and cultural impact. If we could just manage that pesky stress, we could be the ones to make some serious universal impact.
So, in the vein of New Year, New You, how about some tips on reducing stress for good, so you can focus on the good stuff?
When you feel it's all got a bit much, get on your jacket and go for a walk. Even if it's just for five minutes. The fresh air, rain or sunshine can help to draw the senses away from stress in an office/home environment and allow you to reset and focus. Try and keep away from your phone and take long deep breaths, observing your surroundings. Walk around and look people in the eye (remember when we actually used to do that!). You'll go back to your office feeling lighter, taller and relaxed.
This is common advice for stress relief, and that’s because it works! Exercising helps relieve the stress buildup, it gives you some quiet time to contemplate and relax, and just as importantly, it makes you more fit. But it doesn't have to mean pumping iron, running a marathon. Simply walking more, taking the stairs, stretching at your deskor taking a yoga class can give you space to unwind and energise your body!
Eating healthily goes hand-in-hand with exercise as a stress prevention method, of course. Regularly eating heavy, greasy and processed foods can affect mood, energy and thus contribute to stress levels immediately.
Create more open periods of time in your life. It’s not completely necessary to schedule every minute of our lives to be 'busy' all day long. We often think we are being unproductive by doing 'nothing' but sometimes we need downtime to relax, rejuvenate and reset. Learn to prioritise tasks, including meetings you really don't have to go to. You will love having an open schedule. Yoga, anyone?
Put systems in place to minimize stress. As with all areas of life, it helps to plan ahead to help prevent things going wrong. In the workspace having a manageable system and relaxing space in which to work from will help keep your stress free.
Keep your desk orderly, keep a to-do list handy, and be proactive about starting challenging projects early. But remember to step away too! Use your lunch break to take that de-stressing walk or meditate and reflecting on the things you're grateful for.
Just small changes every day can help to alleviate day to day stressors and make your life a little more manageable. SO you can get on with saving the world, right?
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