In general, coping with stress includes a fair amount of patience. Whatever it is that's causing your stress probably didn't appear in a single day, and you definitely won't be able to get it to all go away in one day either. But it can be mitigated and chipped away at by practicing coping strategies, no matter the source of your stress.
It's easy to feel overwhelmed, especially with everything going on in the world today. Some of the most common types of stress nowadays include environmental stress, emotional stress, and work stress. But no matter the cause, if you don't confront your stress it can lead to both mental and physical health problems later on down the road, affecting everything from heart health to eventual mental burnout.
Stress can look different for everyone, appearing as anything from anxiety, panic attacks, and nervous laughter to headaches and an inability to get anything done. It can create physical symptoms, emotional distress, and even lead to constant brain fog. The important thing, aside from identifying the stressor or stressors in your life, is learning how to properly cope with stress. To give you a head start, we've identified a variety of strategies for coping with stress.
7 Tips and Strategies for Coping with Stress
Coping with stress can include any combination of quick relaxation techniques, meditative practices, creative outlets, exercise, and a healthy support system. And supplementing your coping strategies with CBD and ashwagandha can also help decrease your stress levels and regulate your mood. Because why rely on one method alone when you can stack the cards in your favor instead?
Like we mentioned above, not every technique works for everyone, and that's OK. Whether one of our tips below helps or you find an alternative method that works for you, the important thing is that you identify and practice what you need to do to better your mental health.
Listen to Your Favorite Music
Find the tunes that relax you and turn them up, have a dance party of one, and shake your arms and legs to release the tension bunching up your muscles. Although listening to your favorite music can be a great way to cope with stress all on its own, dancing has been shown to relieve stress and help boost your health.
Not only that, but raising your heart rate and shaking out your limbs by dancing around for just a few minutes can provide the same kind of feeling as going for a run or taking a walk outside. Which is especially good for those days when your stress is keeping you feeling down and unmotivated, making it hard to get yourself outside.
Regular exercise of any kind increases your endorphins, a.k.a. your brain's feel-good motivators, and reduces your stress levels by calming your body's natural fight-or-flight response. Plus, it exhausts your body, and your mind by extension. Which can sometimes be all you need to break the chains that stress holds on you, allowing your mind to relax.
Try Deep Breathing Exercises
While some breathing exercises can take time to master, others can be as simple as a five-minute breathing meditation practice. Some quick breathing exercises include 4-7-8 breathing, belly breathing, and box breathing, all of which are designed to keep your mind focused on your breath count and the flow of air through your lungs. Breathing exercises can be a great skill to learn for coping with stress throughout the day, but they can also help improve your mood and regulate your heart rate.
Practice Mindfulness as Often as You Can
Mindfulness is a relatively new term for those who don't regularly practice meditation techniques. In short, it is the act of being present in the current moment while remaining aware (without judgment) of how your thoughts, feelings, and environment interact. And it can be hard to achieve without practice, which is why it is often accompanied by meditation.
That being said, mindfulness can also be as simple as focusing on exactly what you're eating or drinking, focusing on the flavors and how they make you feel while letting everything else drift away. And it can help you discover things you might have otherwise overlooked if you let your stress rule your mind. Mindfulness allows you to purposely set aside some time to just be where you are, without tuning into the endless loop of thoughts in your head.
Use (All) Your Vacation Days
Use. Your. Vacation. Days.
It really is as simple as that. If you have time that you can take off that isn't assigned to any holidays or pre-scheduled trips, then take a day or two when you can. Take a Friday off and have a long weekend if you need it. It's the very least you can do for your stress, and can actually help you stave off burnout. So take an impromptu vacation or stay-cation when you feel the stress piling up. Take a relaxing bath and read a good book. Your job will survive without you.
Regularly Practice Coping Skills at Home
It can feel silly to practice deep breathing, meditation, and other strategies for coping with stress at home, but you'll undoubtedly feel more comfortable using them in public and at work if you do. And like safety drills, it's always better to practice everything you need to know before there's an actual emergency. If you do, you might just find yourself falling back on some of those skills for coping with stress without even realizing it.
Find a Healthy Support System and Lean on Them
Last but certainly not least, you need a support system to lean on. Whether that be your friends, partner, or family, no one should ever struggle alone. Working toward a state of better mental health and dealing with common stressors isn't easy - we know that. But it can be so much harder than it has to be if you try to do it alone.
In general, coping with stress includes a lot of practice and a lot of patience. But it's worth it to strive for better mental health, a brighter mood, and a happier outlook on life. For more information on how to cope with everyday stress, keep an eye on our frequently updated blog. Looking to stay up to date on the latest supplement news and cbdMD's upcoming special offers? Connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, or chat with someone live today!