Stress Management (Photo: webmink)By Susan Owen-Thursfield
Most people probably know by now that high levels of unmanaged stress can lead to very serious physical symptoms and illnesses. But did you know that excessive stress can also cause damaging changes in your behaviors too, such as stress eating or self harming?
These are just two ways in which people try to stop feeling overwhelmed as stress takes a toll on their lives. But there are many others. Here are my five best tips to stop stress from ruining your life.
Tip #1 Take Small Steps
Question: How do you eat an elephant? Answer: One bite at a time!
Just like the joke, if you are faced with an enormous task that seems just too hard to do, break it down into little achievable steps and tackle them one at a time. It's easier to accomplish small goals and doing so will give you a great sense of achievement.
And as you finish each small step, you will be moving closer and closer towards your overall goal. One day you will wake up and realize you've actually done the enormous task and how good will that feel?
Tip #2 Be Kind To Yourself
Have you ever heard the saying, "the grass is always greener on the other side"? What this means is that everyone always looks to be better off than you (in whatever way you're thinking about) when see from your perspective, and "falling short" is one way to pile the stress on.
So to manage your stress levels in these situations, simply stop comparing yourself to everyone you meet. That way you can never come off worse. And if you don't allow yourself to feel inferior to everyone you meet, you will soon find your confidence starting to soar.
Tip #3 Get a Furry Friend
Stroking a furry animal has been shown to have such beneficial effects on your stress levels and heart health that hospitals allow them in to help patients manage their stress, And research has shown that during a play session with a dog, the owner's and dog's serotonin levels rose and stress levels fell significantly.
Pets can give your mood a much needed lift but if you are allergic to fur, don't worry. Any pet, even a goldfish can be a great boost after a hard day. Just make sure you repay your pet's loyalty by looking after it properly.
Tip #4 Laugh More
Laughter is great stress relief. It helps the body to clear the stress hormones and helps to release serotonin. But even if you don't feel like laughing, faking it still works because it still releases "feel good" endorphins.
One of the best ways to fake a laugh is to stand with your legs apart, inhale and stretch your arms up over your head. Now bend down to place your hands on the ground. As you do so, exhale, letting out a great big "Ha, Ha, Ha, Ha, Ha" sound. Return your arms over your head and repeat. I guarantee you'll soon be laughing for real.
Tip #5 Do Some Spring Cleaning
Having too much clutter in your living spaces is depressing for most people. So when you are suffering with too much stress, one of the easiest ways to make yourself feel better is to declutter some part of your home (But see Tip#1).
Choose one small area to tackle first, such as your kitchen work surfaces, your desk top, T-shirt drawer or anything that is easy to spot. Focus on it and tidy, clean or throw out things as needed until you have a spacious and relaxing environment where you can relax and unwind and think clearly.
Remember, most daily stresses are temporary. All stress passes in time but you can go a long way to reducing it on a daily basis if you put these stress busting tips into action.
For more practical tips on how to improve your life, click here to download your free ebook or check out my stress relief blog and leave a comment.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Susan_Owen-Thursfield