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While the first Wednesday in November each year is National Stress Awareness Day, the world is a pretty stressful place a lot of the time and it is different for us all.
You might feel irritable and impatient, nervous or depressed. There can be knots in your stomach, a sense of dread and the inability to see the good in life. Panic attacks, sleepless nights, loss of libido and feeling sick, dizzy or fainting are all ways stress can be experienced.
If we are to thrive, we need to find our own ways of coping with whatever our busy lives throw at us, so we have some ideas we hope might help.
Know your triggers
A buzz word, maybe, but it’s really good to try to access your triggers, where possible. Stress can come from many things, be that work, kids, family, friends or other people on social media! If you can identify what causes your stress, this will help you to tackle it and get things under control. Start to keep a diary of when you feel stressed, look at who or what sets it off and if a pattern emerges look at the changes you can make so things settle down.
Look at your lifestyle
Exercise is often on the bottom of our to do list, but it is a great way to manage stress. Increasing your heart rate, eating a nutritious diet, drinking lots of water and getting plenty of sleep are really important if you want to keep stress levels down. Just as you track your stress, look at how good you feel after a run or a swim, and how your skin improves when you swap chocolate and coffee for fruit and veg.
Pick your battles
There can be many things in life that are stressful – from a big bill, unfair boss to an angry customer, but if you react to them all you are going to be ill. Choose which things you are going to actually direct energy at and try to resolve, but the rest can be put behind you because they aren’t worth it.
Let it go
Stamp your feet, shout out loud, cry or jump up and down or do some boxing! No, we aren’t talking about toddler tantrums, but letting out your stress and steam in a more physical way. If you are feeling cross and out of control, it might just help to yell about it and get that stress out of your system.
Turning off your phone, not checking your emails and powering down your laptop can all help put a lid on stress. You don’t need to be ‘on it’ 24/7, and no one expects you to work late every night, and if they do, maybe you need to look at how much work is impacting your life and stress levels.
This is talked about a lot, but mindfulness is where you have an awareness of the present moment and you pay attention to thoughts, feelings and sensations in the here and now. Mindfulness is really good for healthy mental wellbeing, so if you feel stressed, take a moment and reflect. If your mind gets busy, mindfulness can help to slow it down.
Kick the bad stuff
Smoking, drinking and binge-eating are ways many people cope with stress, but none of those toxic habits will do you any favours. Giving up cigarettes, cutting down takeaways and going to the gym rather than the pub will help you to feel better in the long run.
If things are getting out of hand, chat to your GP – you won’t be the only one.
Team Pure Beauty