Stress management begins by knowing about the causes that lead to various stresses in your life. As easy as it may sound, when it comes to putting it to practice, things get way more difficult. The thoughts, behaviors and feelings that induce stress in a person's body as well as the mind cannot be overlooked. It is true that most of you must be worried about completing the work before its deadline. Procrastination often leads to stress and when this is more than the actual stress that the work demands, it can have a harmful effect on your life as well.

6 Stress Management Techniques

The Ultimate Technique for Stress Management: Starting a Stress Journal

Maintain a record of all the 'instances when you feel stressed' is one if the highly used stress management technique. As you do this, it will be easier for you to connect the dots and see a common pattern developing out of it. You can do the following:

  • Write down the cause of stress. In case of dilemma, try guessing it.
  • Both emotional and physical feelings attached to the stress.
  • Your responsiveness to the stressful events.
  • The methods you employed to revive and feel better in such situations.

Think of all the ways you would adopt to cope with or manage all the stress that you are facing in your daily life. The journal that you have maintained can help you in identifying the cause of stress. Keep a tap on the measures that you are taking and speculate whether they are unhealthy or healthy and unproductive or helpful at all times. Regrettably, many people often adopt ways that make stressful situations even worse to cope in the late stages.

Unhealthy Ways of Coping with Stress:

The following strategies may help in reducing stress temporarily, but they will eventually cause more harm in the future:

  • Procrastinating
  • Overeating or under eating
  • Drinking
  • Zoning out for a long time by watching television
  • Staying aloof from various activities, family and friends.
  • Avoidance of problems by engaging yourself in some work for every minute of the day
  • Hypersomnia or sleeping a lot
  • Smoking
  • Using pills or drugs to relax
  • Forcing your stressful situations on other by outbursts, lashing out and physical violence as well.

It is time for you to switch to healthier means if the current strategies are not promoting a healthier way of living and are not granting you an emotional or physical wellbeing. There are innumerable ways to cope and manage the stress, but they all require some necessary alterations. It will be helpful for you to choose the right way of coping with stress, if you pay attention to the four A's: avoidance, alteration, adaptation, or acceptance.

#1: Getting Rid of Unnecessary Stress is One of the Best Technique to Manage Stress

One of the best stress management techniques is to keep clear of all the stress that is unnecessary. All stress cannot be avoided and it is not healthy to stay away from a situation that needs your attention. You may be surprised to see the number of stressors that you can actually eliminate from your daily life.

  • Learn to use the word no. In personal or professional life, taking more load than that you can handle will often lead to stressful situations.
  • Avoid being in a stressful company of people. If someone is causing you unnecessary stress, it would be smarter move to limit the time you spend with them.
  • Learn to take control of the situation. If any instance makes you feel anxious, get away from the situation. Be it television or any external condition, find an alternative way to set your mind away from it.
  • Avoid topics that trigger you. If you get upset on political or religious views, delete them from your conversation list. Repetitive arguments with people on similar topics can lead to stress.
  • Strip down your schedule. Manage your daily tasks and all the things that have to be completed in a day. Drop the tasks that do not need attention along with the ones that are more important for you to carry out. This will help you in managing stress.

#2: Looking for New Ways to Alter Situations is a Good Stress Management Technique

Another technique for managing stress is to modify the situation. If you are unable to avoid any stressful event, try to change or modify it. Figure out new ways to alter the problems and this will eventually help you in coping up with the stress.

  • Do not bottle up your feelings. Express them instead. If someone or something is bothering you, try to speak openly about it without any verbal hurting. If you do not speak about the feelings, the feeling of antipathy will eventually build.
  • Compromise willingly. When you are willing to see some behavioral changes in a person, be willing to do the same. This way, you will find a middle ground that can be happily shared by two people without any bitterness.
  • Be more self-confident. Never be a backseater in your own life. Deal with the problems sportingly and find the necessary means to prevent them in the future.
  • Follow time management. When you allot proper time for all the tasks that you have to perform, you can stay focused. While this is being done, make sure to not override yourself or this will eventually lead to stress.

#3: Changing Your Attitude Towards the Stressors is a Great Stress Management Technique

Become accustomed to the stressor. If you cannot alter the stressor, change yourself. You can alter your attitude and expectations to manage stressful events. This is an adaptive stress management technique, where you adapt to the situation by changing your attitude towards the stressors and find positive ways to cope with them.

  • Re-frame the problems. Try to tackle the situations that are stressful with a positive attitude towards it. Rather than being angry at a smaller situation, look for ways to deal with it by re-framing its cause entirely.
  • Have a bigger picture in mind. Outlook the entire stressful event. Ask yourself how it is going to affect you and for how long it is going to last. When this is done, you will have an idea about how much energy you are wasting behind something that is less important.
  • Tune your principles. Perfectionism is the leading cause of stress. Avoid pushing yourself too farther to an extent where you can no longer handle it. Set smaller goals for you to accomplish and learn that there is no harm in being ordinary.
  • Pay attention on the positive aspects. When stress brings you down, focus on things and diverts your mind on all the good things that are worth appreciating. Though simple, this can help you in coping with all the stress that you are facing.

#4: "Letting Go" Helps you in Reducing Stress and is an Excellent Stress Management Technique

One of the most mentioned stress management techniques is letting go of the things and situations which are beyond your control and here acceptance is the key. Try to accept the instances that you cannot change. You cannot avoid all stressful situations like the death of a beloved, grave illness or a recession for that matter. At such times, it is better to accept the truth and move forward. As these cannot be changed or brought back, it is better to rail through the situation rather than fighting for its change.

  • Never attempt to control the unmanageable. Many things are way beyond our control- mainly the behavior of others. Rather than breaking your head behind them, focus on the options that you can use for avoiding any reaction with such people's behavior.
  • Look for an upliftment. Our mistakes often make us stronger for avoiding them in the future. When you face massive challenges, look at them as an opportunity for growth. If your poor preferences lead you to such situation, try to learn from the mistakes that you have made.
  • Speak about your feelings. Schedule an appointment with a therapist or speak to your friend. The act of expression through conversation can be extremely therapeutic even if there is no other alternative left to tackle stressful situations. Opening up to trustworthy people is not a sign of cowardness and you can easily confide in them. This will help in strengthening the bond and help in tackling such stressful events as well.
  • Confide in the act of forgiveness. Accept the fact that this world is imperfect and you will have to forgive people that come your way or hurt you. By freeing your mind, you can fill in some positive energy and let go of stressful events that are unnecessary.

#5: Relaxing Is One of the Powerful Techniques Used In Stress Management

Relaxing is one of the powerful techniques used in stress management. Take some out of your schedule for relaxation and fun. Nurture yourself for taking away the stress from your life and gaining a positive attitude towards life. If you make some time for fun and frolic, all the stressors will be handled in the best way. Never get caught up in the rush of life so that you avoid taking care of all the needs that are necessary for leading a healthy life. Nurturing is a necessity and not comfort.

  • Find some time for relaxation. Include specific time for relaxation and rest in your schedule. Do not allow other responsibilities to intrude. This is your time and this is all you have got to set your body into a positive motion.
  • Connect with your fellow mates. Spend some time with people that make you happy. This will help in enhancing your quality of life and fill positivity around you. The negative stress effects will be eventually eliminated.
  • Indulge in activities that you love the most. Spend some leisure time by indulging in activities that make you feel happy. This can be as simple as stargazing or playing a piano and working on remodeling your bike.
  • Preserve your sense of humor. Laughing is a stress eliminator. Find ways to laugh at yourself in a healthy way. When in need, indulge in watching some comedy sitcoms that will help you in laughing for a long time.

#6: Maintaining a Healthy Life Style is the Ultimate Technique for Stress Management

One Technique by which you can manage stress properly is by follow a healthy lifestyle. You can strengthen your physical health by resisting the stressful events that come along.

  • Exercise on a regular basis. The effects of stress can be reduced by regular exercising. When you are active at all times, stress can also be prevented. All the pent-up stress can be released with aerobic exercises that last for at least 30 minutes, thrice a week.
  • Consume a healthy diet. It can be easier to cope with stress if you have a healthy body. Begin your day by eating a healthy breakfast, so that you stay energized for an entire day. A nutritious and balanced diet can help in keeping your mind clear from all stressors.
  • Reduce sugar and caffeine intake. High levels of caffeine and sugar breaks can often crash your mood and make you feel low. By reducing the consumption of sugary snacks, chocolate, coffee and soft drinks, you will be able to feel relaxed and it will promote a sound sleep as well.
  • Avoid drugs, alcohol and cigarettes. Self-medication with drugs or alcohol may only grant you temporary relief from stress. Do not avoid the situations, but learn to deal with the issues in a healthy way by clearing your mind.
  • Get a sound sleep. Enough sleep fuels your mind and this may often help in keeping the stress level at minimum.

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Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD, FFARCSI

Last Modified On: May 16, 2016

Pain Assist Inc.

Pramod Kerkar
  Note: Information provided is not a substitute for physician, hospital or any form of medical care. Examination and Investigation is necessary for correct diagnosis.

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