10 Habits That Cause Stress & How To Treat Them?

We tend to experience stress on a diurnal basis for a multitude of reasons. Stress is an ongoing process ranging from minor issues to grave bereavements. Some forms of stress have a positive effect on us. Most of other forms of stress that tend to have a negative impact on us are distressful. We have all gone through those days of palpitations, panic attacks, anxiety, nervous breakdown etc.

10 Habits That Cause Stress & How To Treat Them?

we have listed below 10 habits that cause stress and how to treat them.

#1. Overindulgence in Caffeine: Coffee is a necessary evil of our lives. Caffeine is so important that we don’t realise its adverse effects. Habitual drinkers cannot let go of coffee and that is completely understandable. Most of us work late into the night banking heavily on the caffeine to give us its kick. However, we could easily cut down on the caffeine content. Too much of caffeine intake tends to over stimulate our nerves and makes us prone to more stress. One should try and keep the caffeine content at the minimum level. Excessive caffeine intake is one habit that causes stress. There are healthier ways of making coffee too. Adding a little bit of cinnamon to your coffee, could help ease out the matter. Cinnamon can control the blood sugar level in the body and help in controlling your stress levels too.

#2. Too Much Ranting & Raving: Stress forms a recurrent pattern in our lives. Due to this phenomenon, we burst out more often than not. We reach such stress levels where we cannot help but vent out. Sometimes sitting down with a friend and letting it all out might helps us. However, the venting should be in small amounts. If we are constantly venting about the problems in our life, then that will affect our thought process too. People who are extremely stressed tend to go overboard about it and this habit of over venting yourself causes more stress. People hold on to grudges and can’t let go of problems or stresses in life. The best remedy to this problem is to rant about it a bit. This exercise will help reduce the stress level to the extent that it doesn’t bother you anymore. Letting it out to a medical counsellor also works. Friends, family may not be always available or in a position to listen to your problems. In this case, professional help should be availed. Professional help in the form of psychologists and psychiatrists is available at an arm’s reach.

#3. Obsessing Over Things That Cannot Be Changed: Stressful people have the habit of ranting about things that are unchangeable. They tend to obsess about these things and it all goes to vain. For example people might crib about their work life a lot. However, job change may not be the most viable option on the cards. In this case, one must look forward to the next best option that would improve their quality of living and accept it. It is pointless fretting over things that cannot be changed. This habit of obsessing about things, which are not in our control, causes a lot of stress. However, nobody should suffer at any given point. Hence avoid thinking or obsessing about aspects of your life that cannot be altered. Try to look out for other means that can release your stress and help you feel better. Catching up with your friend at a coffee shop, after a hard day’s work might be your next best option. There are other means of combating unhappy professional life too. One could indulge in yoga on a diurnal basis. Yoga is one of the simplest and cheapest stress buster therapies. Try and incorporate this health regime into your daily routine. It can successfully revitalise the body as well as the mind. Other than this accepting what you cannot change is a sure shot way to beat stress.

#4. Eating Unhealthy Food: People tend to binge eat when they are overtly stressed out. Life is a struggle of diurnal activities. Hustling through life is a cumbersome task. At times the solution to a problem may seem bleak. During these crisis hours, one feels like smoking a cigarette or gulping down a can of beer. This might be successful in creating an environment of temporary bliss. However, its ill-effects can be felt both physically and mentally. Over eating junk food during these stressful moments may shoot up the cholesterol or obesity level. The temptation to nibble on a snack is evident during these times. Our temptations should be kept under check if stress is to be treated. There are certain food items that reduce bodily anxiety and stress. Most of the food that we eat during stress is rich in fatty components, making it indigestible thus causing more stress on our body. One should consume a diet rich in nutrients that help to soothe the body and relieve stress. Foods such as avocados are rich in vitamins and folic acid and also ensure effective functioning of the nervous system and regulate blood sugar level too. Almonds, broccoli and salmon fish can also be eaten during anxiety or when you are feeling stressed to relieve stress.

#5. Not Getting Enough Sleep: Not getting enough sleep is a common habit which causes stress. Sleep deprivation can easily make a person very cranky and sluggish and more prone to stress. One may not put his best foot forward when sleep deprived. This may lead to stress or it could work the other way round too. However, there are certain tips that one can practice to ensure a healthy sleep cycle. First find out the cause of your lack of sleep. Allergies may lead to itching, sneezing and other discomforts. This may lead to restless nights. Hence try and combat these allergies on a priority basis. One may use a pest control once a month to keep out the pests. See a doctor if the problem worsens. Medication will help ease the problem, but one should look out for natural remedies too. Drink lots of water throughout the day to keep the body hydrated. It will release the toxins from the body. If water comes across like a boring liquid, then opt for fruit juice to hydrate the body. Almond smoothies are best suited to get a good night’s sleep and beat that stress.

#6. Overanalysing & Overthinking: When people are stressed out they tend to analyse too many things unnecessarily. Such people tend to spend hours thinking about the conversations they have just had. They tend to overanalyse and over think the words spoken in the conversation. Things that could have been kept out of the conversation and things that could have offended others. All this leads to massive amount of stress. These minute details tend to have a massive impact on the overtly stressed out mind. Such people keep on going back to the conversation to see if they have spoken something offensive or unruly. These habits are deadly and cause a lot of stress. People who contemplate too much only pile up their stress. No matter what we say, such people cannot let go of these habits. The best way to tackle this habit that causes stress is by remaining positive. Nobody gives a damn about what has been said or done as they are busy sorting out their own lives. One needs to feel awesome about oneself and chuck these thoughts. One should remember that all these self-destructive thoughts are all in your head. We harbour such thoughts and fall prey to stress arising as a result of it. People who are overtly contemplative by nature should practice meditation. Meditation is the best way to treat stress caused by this habit of overthinking. Meditation helps you to calm down and ingrain a certain amount of positivity in your life.

#7. Going Overboard With Schedules: We get only 24 hours in the day. Hence one can work only as much is possible within the given time frame. Some part of the day is allotted for sleeping, eating and other activities. However, the maximum part of our time is invested in the work life. Moreover, in that time frame one can only work as much as 8-10 hours. Life doesn’t work according to our whims and fancies. Some days the work load is greater than the other days. If we try to pack in more work than we can handle it will lead to stress and anxiety attacks. This habit of trying to cram as much as possible or trying to get a lot of things done in a single day causes unduly stress. This is not a healthy and sane way of dealing with work pressure. To treat this type of stress causing, every worker should fix a target for himself in the given day and work accordingly within the permissible limits. One could pace up in the context of a given task, instead of biting into more than they can manage. It is humanly impossible to finish all tasks within a given day or two. Tasks must be chalked out in a way that there is room for breathing. One should plant their schedules a day before and try not to over-cram them

#8. Trying to Manage Everything: Most of the hyperactive people are of the opinion that they can complete a task on their own. They don’t like delegating work to others and this bait causes a lot of stress. In the aforementioned case, they’ll have to keep a tab on the work of the others too. This augments their stress level and hence they choose to bear the burden all by themselves. They are unable to meet deadlines because they go overboard with work. This is not a very healthy way of working. It drains the person both physically and mentally. This work load is capable of driving a person insane. One must try out alternate means of stress and work management. Moreover taking help from friends is a healthy alternative. This would reduce the work pressure and ensure the work being completed on time. Task division of work according to one’s ability is an essential ingredient of work life. If one can allocate work properly then the job gets done easily and stress kept at bay. It is important to realise the fact that one cannot do everything on their own and that’s where team work comes into action. Team work generates success and boasts the self-esteem of an individual and also keeps the stress away.

#9. Focusing on the Negatives: People who tend to worry a lot tend to focus more on the negative aspects of life and succumb to more stress. We need to fathom the fact that the bad things are temporary. They are certain fragments of life that goes away with time. The negative aspects should be ignored as they are not permanent. The negative aspects should be looked upon as a stepping stone to success. You can beat this stress causing habit of focusing on the negatives by shifting your focus the positives. The positive aspects of life should be emphasized. Happy relationships should be treasured and nourished in life. Do things that make you happy. Take a trip to your favourite destination if you want. Take some time out for yourself. Indulge in writing, pen down your thoughts and activities. Don’t overload yourself with work. Develop a habit of saying no when you cannot do a certain thing instead of biting into it. We can also take a break from technology for a week and see how that changes life for the better.

#10. Rushing Through Life: People who tend to get anxious frequently, pretty much lose their peace of mind. Madly rushing through your day is a habit which guarantees stress. People are so caught up in their anxieties that they lose out on the little pleasures of everyday life. We over-indulge in work to such an extent, that we forget to enjoy the fruits of our labour. Take some time out of your busy schedule to enjoy the truest essence of life. People who stress out a lot undergo periods of panic attacks, nervous breakdowns and other palm sweating activities. They are always striving hard to keep up with the competition around them. These individuals are cranky and have frequent outbursts. They are simply too hard on themselves. At times it’s important to slow down the pace of life to know what it actually entails. Leave all work aside and take out your favourite book to read, sipping a cup of warm coffee. Listen to your favourite playlist on loop and feel good about the aura that it creates. Don’t get entangled in the loose string of profit and losses. Try and look forward to what life has in store for you. The best way for treating this habit is taking a deep breath, looking around you, and admiring and appreciating the little things in life.

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:May 15, 2018

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